The Office for Product Safety and Standards (The Office), part of BEIS

UK SBS DDaT18008 BEIS Quality Assurance Analyst for The Office’s Portfolio of Digital Services

Incomplete applications

17
Incomplete applications
16 SME, 1 large

Completed applications

33
Completed applications
32 SME, 1 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Monday 12 November 2018
Deadline for asking questions Monday 19 November 2018 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Monday 26 November 2018 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Overview
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Specialist role Quality assurance analyst
Summary of the work The Office has two services in Beta–PAR & MSPSDS both require a testing regime. PAR has end-to-end automated testing with functional tests written in cucumber and nightwatchjs and manual testing which need developing and iterating. MSPSDS will need an automated and manual testing regime to be developed and managed.
Latest start date Monday 14 January 2019
Expected contract length 10 months until 8th November 2019
Location London
Organisation the work is for The Office for Product Safety and Standards (The Office), part of BEIS
Maximum day rate £600 - £750
The budget range for this requirement is £127,200.00 – £159,000.00 excluding VAT.

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Early market engagement The Office has two services currently in Beta production - Primary Authority Register (PAR) and Market Surveillance and Product Safety Digital Service (MSPSDS).

For PAR we have implemented an end-to-end automated test regime with functional tests written in cucumber and nightwatchjs. These assert the expected outcome of each journey including unhappy paths. We also have manual testing scripts that we run on each major release to ensure there are no regressions or adverse impacts to real users.

MSPSDS has just entered the beta phase and has not yet established a mature testing regime as yet.
Who the specialist will work with This project is being led by The Office’s Digital and Technology team as well as subject matter experts. Specifically, The Office will provide:

• Service Manager(s)
• Product Owner(s)
• Delivery Manager(s)

In addition, there will be access to local business analyst, user research, content design and developer resources for each of the services in The Offices Digital service portfolio e.g. PAR, MSPSDS.

Subject matter experts will be available to help the supplier understand the policies and business processes that underpin the service.
What the specialist will work on As The Office develops services we release live code on a regular basis.

Our aim is to minimise the risk of code related service issues by applying a consistent and robust approach to Quality Assurance (QA) testing across all our services prior to live release using both automated and manual testing regimes.

We need a highly skilled QA Tester to work as part of our team and manage this across all our services.

They will work closely with service teams to agree, develop and implement effective automated and manual testing strategies appropriate to the service.

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, 1 Victoria Street London SW1H 0ET.

There is a possibility of travel to BEIS offices in Birmingham (BEIS will meet any additional travel costs incurred away from the London office for the purposes of user research or attendance at other BEIS sites).
Working arrangements The specialist will be located at 1 Victoria Street, London and adhere to BEIS normal working hours (09:00 - 17:00).

Suppliers must comply with the BEIS travel and subsistence policy.

There may be the occasional need to travel to offices in Birmingham.
Security clearance Security Check (SC) national security vetted personnel clearance required.

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Additional terms and conditions N/A

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
  • Demonstrate how you will apply your skills and expertise to the below points, and how they will ensure the successful delivery of this project:
  • Work as a QA Manager or Test Manager on agile application digital delivery projects – 12%
  • Work with services designed and built using the Government digital service standard – 12%
  • Deliver and execute test strategies/plans with measurable outcomes from unit testing through to operational acceptance/performance and automation testing – 12%
  • Coordinate testing across multiple services and suppliers to provide a comprehensive QA service – 12%
  • Work with The Office’s digital team to develop test scripts for UAT/manual testing – 12%
Nice-to-have skills and experience

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many specialists to evaluate 3
Cultural fit criteria
  • Demonstrate how you will ensure collaboration at all levels of the project and programme delivery between users, team members and management – 7%
  • Demonstrate how you will create/enhance a Quality Assurance culture across The Office’s portfolio of services – 7%
  • Demonstrate how you will coach, mentor and support the civil service Digital Apprentice to develop skills in automated testing regimes – 6%
Assessment methods
  • Work history
  • Interview
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

60%

Cultural fit

20%

Price

20%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Hi, if the candidate does not hold existing SC clearance, will the department apply for the SC clearance? The department will sponsor SC clearance for the successful bidder if required.
2. Is this role outside IR35 or inside IR35? The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
3. Is the specialist expected to be a QA Manager or Tester/analyst? The essence of this role is to ensure that our services have quality automated and manual testing processes in place. The role holder will have responsibility for both and quality assure our code releases so that they are fully tested before release into the live environment.
4. May I know the current constituent of the QA team? Does a QA team exist? We do not currently have a dedicated QA team or resource in place. We do have access to QA testers provided by suppliers who are helping us develop our services. Where that is the case we would expect the role holder to work with them to understand their automated and manual testing regimes. Our goal is that this role will reduce the current dependency on external suppliers to provide QA testing resources.
5. Will your requirement be required to posses Security Clearance, or are you willing to process security clearance for the right candidate? The department will sponsor SC clearance for the successful bidder if required.
6. Is this role outside of IR35?
Are you expecting an SME to potentially overhaul the current automation setup or are they expected to work with whats already been developed?
The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.

Regarding the current automation setup, we are open to suggestions and will act on recommendations from the successful applicant where appropriate.
7. Is this requirement only for a Java specialist or would you consider a C# specialist? The requirements are for a QA specialist. The services in place use Ruby on Rails and Drupal 8.
8. Can the authority please clarify the IR35 status of this role The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
9. Is there a incumbent currently in this position or is this a new position/requirement We do not currently have a dedicated QA team or resource in place. We do have access to QA testers provided by suppliers who are helping us develop our services. Where that is the case we would expect the role holder to work with them to understand their automated and manual testing regimes. Our goal is that this role will reduce the current dependency on external suppliers to provide QA testing resources.
10. will the position be considered inside or outside of the intermediaries legislation (IR35)? The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
11. Is there a current incumbent ? No, there is not an incumbent. We do not currently have a dedicated QA team or resource in place. We do have access to QA testers provided by suppliers who are helping us develop our services. Where that is the case we would expect the role holder to work with them to understand their automated and manual testing regimes. Our goal is that this role will reduce the current dependency on external suppliers to provide QA testing resources.
12. Essential skills focused on Test Manager role but you are expecting a test analyst with Automation and Manual. Are you looking some who got experience in manual, automation and Test Management Experience?
Could you please clarify.
The essence of this role is to ensure that our services have quality automated and manual testing processes in place. The role holder will have responsibility for both and quality assure our code releases so that they are fully tested before release into the live environment.
13. Is this role deemed to be inside or outside IR35? The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
14. Is this role Automation or Manual focused? There is mention of candidates working with Automation frameworks, however the responsibilities it mentions UAT/Manual Testing requirements. The essence of this role is to ensure that our services have quality automated and manual testing processes in place. The role holder will have responsibility for both and quality assure our code releases so that they are fully tested before release into the live environment.
15. Is this role a QA/Test Manager position? As there is mention of management responsibilities The successful candidate is expected to handle day-to-day QA activities as well as providing oversight across all OPSS services to align and develop our QA approach. There is no direct staff management duties associated with the role as it stands. However, we would expect the role holder to manage the relationship with any external suppliers QA testing resources to ensure alignment with our goals.
16. Is there any flexibility on the role title? E.G. Could it be changed to QA/Test Manager? No, there is no flexibility on the role title. The successful candidate is expected to handle day-to-day QA activities as well as providing oversight across all OPSS services to align and develop our QA approach. There is no direct staff management duties associated with the role as it stands. However, we would expect the role holder to manage the relationship with any external suppliers QA testing resources to ensure alignment with our goals.
17. How hands on is this role when concerning Testing? More focused on management, developing frameworks from scratch or Manual Testing? The successful candidate is expected to handle day-to-day QA activities as well as providing oversight across all OPSS services to align and develop our QA approach. There is no direct staff management duties associated with the role as it stands. However, we would expect the role holder to manage the relationship with any external suppliers QA testing resources to ensure alignment with our goals.
18. Please confirm BEIS's thoughts concerning the IR35 status of this role. The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
19. Please can you confirm if this role is inside/outside IR35? The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
20. Please can you confirm if there is an incumbent currently in the role? No, there isn't an incumbent. We do not currently have a dedicated QA team or resource in place. We do have access to QA testers provided by suppliers who are helping us develop our services. Where that is the case we would expect the role holder to work with them to understand their automated and manual testing regimes. Our goal is that this role will reduce the current dependency on external suppliers to provide QA testing resources.
21. Hi, would you support the candidate to get SC clearance or do you want candidate having existing SC clearance in place before he joins? The department will sponsor SC clearance for the successful bidder if required.
22. Hi, is this role outside IR35 or inside IR35? The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
23. This role reads a hybrid between a Test Manager and a Hands-On Automated Test Specialist. If this is correct, please confirm what percentage you expect in each of these two roles. This will need to be flexible to suit the needs of each of the services. Once existing process have been reviewed/revised the role will become more hands-on.
24. Is this assignment outside of IR35? The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
25. Please confirm if this role is inside or outside IR35 The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
26. Hi, is there any preference for SC cleared candidate or non SC cleared candidate? Will they both be treated at par during the evaluation stage or do you have preference for someone already having SC clearance? The department will sponsor SC clearance for the successful bidder if required. Evaluation will be undertaken on a like-for-like basis irregardless of whether or not a bidder has existing SC clearance.
27. The essential skills are like a test manager role – example "Work as a QA Manager / Test Manager on agile application digital delivery"
but "What the specialist will work on" says "We need a highly skilled QA Tester to work as part of our team and manage this across all our services. They will work closely with service teams to agree, develop and implement effective automated and manual testing strategies appropriate to the service."
So is this a Test manager or Test lead type of person who is hands on in manual/automation testing and exp in managing?
The successful candidate is expected to handle day-to-day QA activities as well as providing oversight across all OPSS services to align and develop our QA approach. There is no direct staff management duties associated with the role as it stands. However, we would expect the role holder to manage the relationship with any external suppliers QA testing resources to ensure alignment with our goals.
28. Are looking for someone that will be eligible to undergo SC clearance or someone with existing valid and transferable SC clearance? The department will sponsor SC clearance for the successful bidder if required. Evaluation will be undertaken on a like-for-like basis irregardless of whether or not a bidder has existing SC clearance.
29. Will the authority sponsor SC clearance if a suitable candidate does not currently hold SC? Yes, the department will sponsor SC clearance for the successful bidder if required.
30. Is this role outside IR35? The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
31. Is the role deemed to be within IR35 ? The IR35 status is unable to be determined at this time as it is possible for contractors who are both in and out of scope of the off payroll working rules to be engaged through DOS. The successful supplier / contracting authority will need to check the status in accordance with the HMRC online tool prior to contract commencement. A link to this tool can be found here https://www.tax.service.gov.uk/check-employment-status-for-tax/setup.
32. Can a supplier submit more than one application if they have more than one suitable candidate for the role ? No, suppliers can only submit one application per opportunity.
33. Is there an incumbent or is this a new role ? No, there is not an incumbent. We do not currently have a dedicated QA team or resource in place. We do have access to QA testers provided by suppliers who are helping us develop our services. Where that is the case we would expect the role holder to work with them to understand their automated and manual testing regimes. Our goal is that this role will reduce the current dependency on external suppliers to provide QA testing resources.
34. In the application form, the following is a question that needs a 100 word answer: "Demonstrate how you will apply your skills and expertise to the below points, and how they will ensure the successful delivery of this project:". I believe this is actually just the leading statement for the questions and shouldn't be a question that requires an answer in itself. Please clarify. Yes, we can confirm that it is a leading statement for the questions. Please do not provide a response to the leading statement as it is not a question that will be scored. Due to the word limit when posting criteria the question has been split into two parts.
35. Can you give an indication of when the evaluation for this specialist will be complete? We anticipate that the evaluation will be completed by Christmas, with the award announcement anticipated to take place week commencing Monday 7th January 2019. However this is subject to change.