Start date: Monday 1 July 2019
Value: £58,500
Company size: SME
Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames and London Borough of Sutton

Making better use of our customer data and information

17 Incomplete applications

10 SME, 7 large

41 Completed applications

36 SME, 5 large

Important dates

Monday 31 December 2018
Deadline for asking questions
Monday 7 January 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Monday 14 January 2019 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
A discovery and alpha phase to understand how we can make greater use of our data and information to help inform user-centric service design, involving trials and prototypes, and ultimately leading to the development of a detailed delivery plan for the implementation of the required solutions.
Latest start date
Monday 11 February 2019
Expected contract length
Organisation the work is for
Royal Borough of Kingston upon Thames and London Borough of Sutton
Budget range
£50,000 - £60,000 excluding VAT

About the work

Why the work is being done
The needs of our communities are changing, and we need to be able to predict and adapt accordingly.

We appreciate the importance of our data, but we’re not making the best use of it, and much of it resides in silos. We want to turn this data into information, insight and intelligence.

There’s a desire to have a single view of customers, and present them with a comprehensive view of all their interactions with us.

We want to undertake a full analysis of user needs, trial solutions and test out prototypes, and develop a plan for delivering what’s required.
Problem to be solved
Data is currently distributed across multiple, largely isolated silos, and we also have access to national datasets, open data, data from partner organisations, etc.

We struggle to link data together to derive insight and intelligence and fulfil the needs of our different users.

It needs to be easier for people to transact with us without having to constantly verify their identity.

We need the intelligence to design services around current and future needs.

More of our data should be openly available and usable.

We need a joined up, consistent framework for sharing data efficiently and compliantly internally and with partners.
Who the users are and what they need to do
As data analysts, we need to analyse data across multiple formats and systems (internal and external) to provide robust insights and inform decision-making.

As residents, we need access to open data to be confident that my council’s being transparent.

As customer agents, we need to verify people’s identities and view their interactions with various services in order to deliver great customer experience.

As anti-fraud officers, we need to verify residents so everyone gets the services they’re entitled to.

As councillors, we need access to information in order to understand the issues and make informed decisions.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
The councils have a Digital Strategy and there is a theme within the strategy to make the most of our data and to be as open and transparent as possible. We are currently procuring a new Customer Platform in order to deliver improved customer experience.
Existing team
We have a multi-disciplinary team which is working alongside the customer experience, corporate data teams and service areas to understand how we can maximise use of our data. Existing skills include business analysis, development, testing, user research, interaction design, data management, data analysis, user experience, and more. The team works using an Agile approach.
Current phase
Not started

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
Guildhall Complex, High Street, Kingston upon Thames, KT1 1EU
Civic Centre, St Nicholas Way, Sutton, SM1 1EA
Working arrangements
We would expect the supplier to be onsite for cross-council work to establish user need, to work collaboratively to support the product owner and for sprint planning and show & tells.
Security clearance

Additional information

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.

Essential skills and experience
  • Have in-depth knowledge of data protection, privacy and GDPR.
  • Have experience of working to the Service Design Manual.
  • Have experience of developing the technical architecture for secure, scalable data platforms.
  • Have experience of developing minimum viable solutions.
  • Have experience of developing ‘in the open’ - using tools such as Github and Swagger.
  • Be able to test findings with users.
  • Be able to provide a multi-disciplinary team including research, design, development and data expertise.
  • Have demonstrable experience of supporting knowledge-transfer.
  • Have experience developing REST APIs to open standards.
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Have experience of developing a service to meet the national, or local government digital service standard.
  • Have experience of implementing master data management.

How suppliers will be evaluated

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • Understanding of user needs
  • Team structure and experience
  • Approach to the task
  • Identification of key risks and dependencies
  • Case study from a similar project
Cultural fit criteria
  • Work collaboratively with colleagues in service areas and Digital & IT.
  • Experience of delivering in an open, collaborate, agile way according to the principles outlined in the Government Service Design Manual.
  • Demonstrate simplicity (e.g. do less but better, explaining complex issues in a clear, simple way, break down and prioritise complex issues).
  • Work as a team with our organisations, partners and other suppliers.
  • Be transparent and collaborative when making decisions.
  • Share knowledge and experience with team members and the wider service.
  • Work openly - for example, sharing findings from other councils and with other councils.
Payment approach
Capped time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Work history
  • Reference
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

1. Would the authorities be comfortable with some of the proposed work being carried out offshore?
In principle the authorities would be comfortable with some of the work being carried out offshore, but the proposal would need to demonstrate how that would be compatible with delivering the outcomes required.
2. Is the £50-60k fee expected to include travel/subsistence costs and VAT?
The £50-60k budget is exclusive of VAT but inclusive of expenses.
3. What is the expected duration of the contract?
3-4 months
4. Is the expectation to develop a single view of the customer within each individual authority or across both authorities?
The discovery phase is intended to identify the needs of the authorities. The key outcomes expected are to determine whether a single view of the customer is needed, and whether there is a justifiable need to share data across authorities and / or with partners.
5. What are the expectations on the nature, scale and number of trials and prototypes to be conducted as part of the work?
We have no preconceived expectations regarding the nature, scale and number of trials and prototypes. We expect the supplier to propose what they believe is appropriate and achievable within the budgeted timescale and cost.
6. When do you expect discovery & alpha completion?
3-4 months
7. With regards to the question of supporting knowledge transfer, could you please clarify if this is how we as an organisation obtain/transfer knowledge in a requirements gathering/training capacity or is it referencing our experience aiding clients in the transfer of knowledge to the end user?
This relates to you transferring your knowledge of master data management and data analysis to us directly.
8. Is this role outside IR35 or inside IR35?
9. Do you intend to use GOV.​uk Verify service or are you considering other established identity verification system, or planning to build something bespoke? Verify is something that we are considering.
10. If you are planning to use Verify, Is this project one of the #verifylocal pilots run in conjunction with GDS?
We are not part of any pilots although we have been following the #verifylocal programme.
11. Can you give us some idea of the systems where data is currently stored?
We have data in systems for social care, housing, CRM, elections, revenues and benefits, regulatory services, libraries, schools, special educational needs, etc, etc. We also have data in spreadsheets and on data portals. Plus we have access to data held by partner organisations.
12. Are you able to source participants for research and user testing activities?
Yes we are able to source participants for research and user testing activities.
13. Is the focus of the alpha likely to be testing the UX concepts around the identity verification system, or a technical PoC for drawing together data from other systems, or both?
The focus on the alpha will be determined by the user needs which are identified during the discovery phase. We don't know yet if we need an identity verification system, or a single view of customers, or both, or something else, or several different things combined.
14. We note that a Customer Platform has recently been procured.
Is the expectation that the software within this platform will also be used to fulfill the "better use of our customer data and information" requirements?
The new customer platform will be used to record certain customer interactions, and we may determine that we have a need to use that data. However, this shouldn't be assumed, and the discovery part of this work needs to determine our actual needs.
15. We note that a Customer Platform has recently been procured.
What are the dependencies of this platform in relation to the outcomes of this Alpha?
There are no dependencies between the new platform and the outcomes of this work.
16. Please confirm who the people on your selection panel are and their individual roles and responsibilities
A team of three senior officers from Kingston and Sutton will be scoring applications for this opportunity. Further details of their roles and responsibilities will be shared with shortlisted suppliers.
17. What do you see as the identified risks around the delivery of this work?
As with all uses of external resources, the main risk associated with this is that key knowledge may leave with the resource and be lost to the organisations. This can be mitigated through close involvement with and upskilling of permanent resources. Equally significant is the risk of poor performance, but this can be mitigated by regular monitoring and close collaboration between the organisation and supplier.
18. Can you provide details of how much of your teams time will be assigned to this project and whether they will be ready to start on the expected start date?
The amount of time spent will depend heavily on the approach proposed by the successful supplier. There are resources available to work on the project immediately.
19. Could you clarify the need for work to take place on site. Is this an ongoing need throughout the project or would the successful bidder just need to be regularly available for meetings?
We anticipate a blend of co-location and remote working, depending on the activities being undertaken. For instance, we would expect the supplier to be onsite for discovery activities to establish user need, for sprint planning sessions, and for show & tells.
20. What technology is the new customer platform based on?
We are currently in the process of finalising the commissioning activities. The new customer platform will be used to record certain customer interactions, and we may determine that we have a need to use that data. However, this shouldn't be assumed, and the discovery part of this work needs to determine our actual needs.
21. What discovery work was undertaken to lead to the selection of the new customer platform?
A comprehensive exercise was undertaken to identify the needs of the organisations. This led to a commissioning exercise involving an open tender.
22. What dependencies have been identified between the existing IT infrastructure, the new customer platform, and this project?
The purpose of this piece of work is to identify how we can make better use of our data, which is stored in numerous disparate systems and format. The discovery stage will be used to identify the needs of the different stakeholders and the relevant data architecture, etc, leading to an alpha stage which will explore different solutions available to meet the needs identified.