Student Loans Company Limited

Assess Platform Development for 2018/19 Policy Implementation

Incomplete applications

10
Incomplete applications
5 SME, 5 large

Completed applications

7
Completed applications
3 SME, 4 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Monday 2 July 2018
Deadline for asking questions Monday 9 July 2018 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Monday 16 July 2018 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Overview
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work "SLC is looking to engage a professional Supplier to provide specialist application development and maintenance services for delivery of specific programme outcomes for the Student Loans Assessment Platform (Assess) to meet the current Policy Requirements for 2018-19. Supplier presentations planned 27th July 2018, Onboarding planned 3rd September 2018.
Latest start date Friday 31 August 2018
Expected contract length Up to 16 Months. Approx 8 months for the initial defined Statements of Work
Location Scotland
Organisation the work is for Student Loans Company Limited
Budget range Subject to Business Case and Cabinet Office Approval.

About the work

About the work
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Why the work is being done SLC's primary functions are to:
• Deliver financial support to eligible students pursuing higher education;
• Pay Higher Education Institutions public contribution towards tuition fees for England, Wales and Northern Ireland;
• Supply information needed by HMRC to ensure repayments are collected on time from those due to repay under the Income Contingent Repayment Loan Scheme;
• Manage direct collection of repayments for loans granted under former Mortgage Style Loan Scheme.
• Undertake specific tasks for individual Devolved Administrations e.g. payment of Education Maintenance Allowances.
• Undertake administration and payment of bursaries and scholarships to higher education institutions throughout UK.
Problem to be solved SLC is looking to engage a professional Supplier to provide specialist application development and maintenance services for delivery of specific programme outcomes for the Student Loans Assessment Platform (Assess) to meet the current Policy Requirements for 2018-19. Supplier presentations planned 27th July 2018, Onboarding planned 3rd September 2018.
Who the users are and what they need to do As an internal assessor within SLC I need to, on behalf of applicants, ascertain eligibility and entitlement for repayment, payment and lending capabilities, so that the appropriate processes and capabilities are in place in support of study.
Early market engagement No early market engagement has taken place with suppliers for this requirement.
Any work that’s already been done Inception phases for this development is currently underway. These have been supported by incumbent suppliers and the successful bidder will be expected to mobilise and complete the delivery phases.
Existing team The Supplier will provide a managed service in alignment with the scope of works and deliverables as agreed with SLC. The SLC team will agree in advance with the successful bidder priorities for the outcomes and backlog of features to be delivered as well as contract and project governance mechanisms , including Assurance and Acceptance of Supplier work and reporting format/frequency.
Current phase Discovery

Work setup

Work setup
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Address where the work will take place Glasgow (multiple sites), potentially Darlington and supplier sites.
Working arrangements The services to be delivered onsite within SLC premises and are anticipated to be 5 days per week (unless otherwise agreed with SLC). Travel and Accommodation expenses only will be paid (in alignment with SLC Travel and Expenses Policies) and only for sites that are not the nominated working location. SLC would also consider some of the supplier provision being provisioned from supplier offices.
Security clearance All Supplier resources must meet the Baseline Personnel Security Standard (BPSS/DS).

Additional information

Additional information
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Additional terms and conditions

Skills and experience

Buyers will use the essential and nice-to-have skills and experience to help them evaluate suppliers’ technical competence.

Skills and experience
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Essential skills and experience
  • Digital application development and maintenance (ADM), analysis and design, code development and management, test and QA, ADM Service in complex public sector, policy driven environments at scale
  • Programme/project delivery & quality management, demand management, resource management, planning, change management, delivery performance management and governance in complex public sector, policy driven environments at scale
  • Examples of data management, data integration, data modelling, configuration management, source control, use of standards for development & test in complex public sector, policy driven environments at scale
  • Examples, demonstrating by resources numbers deployed and length of deployment, significant experience of Java development, Clojure development against an existing Clojure code base, JavaScript/ReactJS/Redux in complex environments at scale
  • Examples demonstrating significant experience of developing systems using RabbitMQ, RESTful APIs, MongoDB in complex environments at scale
  • Examples at scale of automated continuous Integration & deployment multiple times daily utilising GIT source repository, trunk based development with toggles, automated testing in continuous delivery at multiple levels.
  • Examples of driving forward development on an existing architecture to deliver Government Policy aims on systems heavily integrated into a complex legacy estate involving heterogeneous platforms at scale
  • Examples at scale of working in contemporary architectures including complex microservices also building service oriented and event based architectures
  • Examples at scale of delivering projects via agile methodology and managing significant backlogs across multiple Agile delivery teams, outcome based delivery as a supplier only delivery team
  • Examples at scale of working with other suppliers and client staff sometimes in mixed teams, also deliver while, at least partially, located at the Suppliers UK offices.
  • Suggest a resource profile for team of 20 resources incorporating the following, Iteration Manager, Business Analysts , Developers, Testers to support SLCs requirement
  • If shortlisted, would you be able to provide 20 appropriately skilled profiles who would be available to start work on 3rd September 2018?
  • Please state when you can commit to have a full compliment (assume 40 heads) of appropriately skilled resources onboarded mainly in SLC Glasgow offices (80%) and Darlington offices (20%).
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Provide examples of demonstrating innovation and give examples of innovation that relate to SLCs business need
  • Described coaching/training expertise that relate to SLC and be able to demonstrate where this has been undertaken for other organisations with measurable impact
  • Provide value add potential, demonstrate additional areas that the supplier can offer to SLC that would be of benefit to SLCs business

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
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How many suppliers to evaluate 3
Proposal criteria
  • Technical competence
  • Significant experience evidenced at scale
Cultural fit criteria
  • Describe how outcome based delivery of services will be managed. Give examples of previous such deliveries indicating the scale of such delivery as monetary value and the length of engagement
  • How do you ensure stability of resources delivering services. How long would resources be committed, what turnover SLA can you commit to? How would you compensate SLC if SLA breached?
  • Describe how you will partner with SLC to support training and mentoring of SLC staff ensuring SLC prepared to providing ongoing support and maintenance once the supplier service terminates
  • Describe your Account and Relationship management practices, and approach for delivering and managing this service
  • Is your organisation aligned to GDPR? You will be required to comply with SLC GDPR terms.
  • SLC use Agile delivery techniques. What delivery methodology do you use and how would you work with SLC.
Payment approach Time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Work history
  • Reference
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

60%

Cultural fit

20%

Price

20%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Are there any constraints (such as GDPR) that would exclude the use of Cloud Services, such as Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure etc. The system handles sensitive personal data plus UK government data. Any cloud service utilised in delivering this would have to comply with obligations under standard CCS framework contracts for Digital Outcomes.
2. Could we have a description of the technologies used and where they fit into the architecture (e.g. React and Redux at client side level, Java for server side exposed via Rest APIs, what is Clojure used for)? The Assessment Platform performs the assessment capability for Student Loans on application for a loan. The Assessment Platform is a micro-services Architecture, with over 30 highly available independent services. The technologies described in the advert are all utilised on the development of the micro services that constitute the assess platform and are are essential for the development of the platform. The successful supplier will be expected to have extensive experience in these technologies and fully understand them.
3. Could we have a high level architecture view of the applications and components currently used within the overall system? The Assessment Platform performs the assessment capability for Student Loans on application for a loan. The Assessment Platform is a micro-services Architecture, with over 30 highly available independent services. The technologies described in the advert are all utilised on the development of the micro services that constitute the assess platform and are are essential for the development of the platform. The successful supplier will be expected to have extensive experience in these technologies and fully understand them.
4. Is there an existing incumbent managing / delivering the current service? There is an incumbent supplier delivering the current service.
5. What is the intended procurement process after the 16th July? After the 16th July a shortlist will be determined from the suppliers that have submitted. The shortlisted suppliers will be request to provide a written submission and may be asked to attend a supplier presentation currently planned for the 27th July.
6. Will SLC be considering ‘off-shoring’ / ‘near shoring’ for the Development Services or do all teams need to be on-site at either Darlington or Glasgow? Initially supplier teams will be expected to be located at SLCs sites (mainly Glasgow but some in Darlington). Longer term SLC is keen to explore suppliers providing at least some of the delivery from supplier UK sites.