Awarded to Cadence Innova

Start date: Monday 8 April 2019
Value: £2,292,575
Company size: SME
Department for Education

Data Directorate Data Architecture & Governance Transformation (Updated)

14 Incomplete applications

13 SME, 1 large

19 Completed applications

15 SME, 4 large

Important dates

Wednesday 13 March 2019
Deadline for asking questions
Wednesday 20 March 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications
Wednesday 27 March 2019 at 11:59pm GMT


Summary of the work
Continuation of the provision of data architecture and data governance services. Providing a blended team of experts, capable of integrating and working closely with DfE staff, to deliver our vision of enterprise-wide data architecture and data governance across the Department for Education. Ideally work will start on 1 April 2019.
Latest start date
Monday 8 April 2019
Expected contract length
1 year
Organisation the work is for
Department for Education
Budget range

About the work

Why the work is being done
The Department for Education uses data to direct funding, measure effectiveness and govern the education sector in England. Our data management activity is led by the Chief Data Officer, who is transforming our organisation to better support the Department's efficient and effective use of data. This wider support will initially be focussed in two key areas - Data Architecture, making our systems use and share data more effectively, and Data Governance, ensuring a sustained, executive-level focus on understanding and assuring our data assets. We require experts to help us continue to deliver our strategy and finalise our GDPR deliverables.
Problem to be solved
Our current data landscape is complex, not easily understood, and poorly governed at an enterprise level. This means that change is difficult to manage, whether that be commercial (re-letting contracts), technical (changes to data sets), managerial (training new starters) or strategic (establishing new data services). The knock-on financial, compliance  and user experience consequences mean that the Department carries some heavy data-related reputational risk, which we are keen to address by paying down the technical debt represented by our data landscape.
Who the users are and what they need to do
As a Chief Data Officer, I need to change DfE's culture, architecture, processes and governance around data to suit a 21st century, data-rich, delivery-focussed public sector organisation.
Early market engagement
Any work that’s already been done
We have already created a Data Strategy & Vision. As the first steps to reaching those, we have recently created a senior-level Data Governance Board and started to roll out Data Governance processes across the Department. At the same time, we have begun to look at our Data Architecture around Learners, and we are rolling out standard Data Architectural artefacts as part of the Architectural governance of projects. We have also delivered the first phase of a unified Data & Analytics Platform for the whole Department. We are seeking an implementation partner to continue our delivery.
Existing team
The supplier will be working within the Data Directorate, and will be accountable directly to the Chief Data Officer. They will help to establish the architecture and governance capability including a Chief Data Architect and Data Governance lead. They will work alongside and support the Directorate’s leadership team to establish the capabilities and processes required to create an efficient, modern data management organization. In addition, there will be a small number of permanent staff to support the team and manage skills transfer, and there may be other suppliers engaged across the Directorate and beyond on specific Directorate projects.
Current phase
Not applicable

Work setup

Address where the work will take place
Sheffield, Coventry, London, Darlington
Working arrangements
The work will be largely office-based, in Sheffield and London to ensure good integration and skills transfer with the permanent team, and will involve travel to other sites as necessary to facilitate or attend workshops or committee meetings, meet team members and other stakeholders. Where travel from the home office location is required, expenses will be reimbursed at the standard Departmental rates.
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
  • Experience of transforming large, data and/or analytics organisations within central government
  • Experience of establishing and operating Data Governance processes in large, complex, data intensive organisations within central government
  • Experience of establishing and running Data Architectural teams, including principles, policies, standards and operating processes within central government
  • Data Architecture - designing and evolving efficient, change-resilient, scalable, automated data pipelines.
  • Proven resourcing and engagement model to ensure the right quality of the team
  • Experience of working well in large public sector organisations, across organisational boundaries, and with multi-agency departments
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Experience and understanding of the Education sector.
  • Experience and understanding of educational datasets

How suppliers will be evaluated

How many suppliers to evaluate
Proposal criteria
  • Approach and methodology
  • How the approach meets our goals
  • How risks and dependencies have been identified and how they will be managed
  • Team structure
Cultural fit criteria
  • Work as a team with our organisation and other suppliers
  • Share knowledge and experience with other team members
Payment approach
Capped time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence


Cultural fit




Questions asked by suppliers

1. Are you looking for consultancy around this? Or for a team to integrate and become part of the workforce?
We would expect the supplier to integrate and provide a service that will support in-house capacity to deliver the functions for the duration of the contract.
2. What is the broader timeline for this procurement beyond the initial evidence stage if the ideal start date of Monday 1 April is to be achieved, allowing for: completion of shortlisting; proposal preparation and submission; selection of preferred supplier and contracting?
We acknowledge that the schedule is tight, so we plan to review the submissions on the 28th March. We will use our best endeavours to notify suppliers of the outcome by the 29th March.
3. The notice states this procurement is for "Continuation of the provision of data architecture and data governance services" and "We are seeking an implementation partner to continue our delivery". Is there an incumbent supplier for whom this is an option to extend? If so, who is the supplier?
Yes there is an incumbent, but there is no option for the existing contract to be extended.
4. Could you please provide guidance on your budget for the services?
We envisage that the service will comprise of the following:
*Chief data architect.
*Up to 3 data architects.
*Data governance lead.
*Data modellers/data designers.
*Technical business analysts.
*A project manager.
*Communications and engagement lead.
The rates will be in line with industry standards.
5. While the supplier team will be required to be on site for specific roles or parts of the engagement, are you open to the supplier's team otherwise delivering from their own UK or EU offices?
There is a requirement for the team to operate prodominently through the Department for Education (DfE) Sheffield or London offices; with the expectation for regular travel between additional DfE sites to maximise the opportunity for engagement with DfE users and stakeholders.
6. What supplier team profile do you envisage?
It is expected that the existing workforce will be enhanced by experts in the following area:
*Chief data architect.
*Up to 3 data architects.
*Data governance lead.
*Data modellers/data designers.
*Technical business analysts.
*A project manager.
*Communications and engagement lead.
The exact staffing requirements will be negotiated with the preferred supplier.
7. You mention continuation of provision of data architecture and also rolling out of standard data artefacts in addition to phase one of a unified data and analytics platform. Can you please give us a view of the technology platforms that the DfE’s architecture is centred on?
The DfE has an ‘Azure-first’ approach, which means we look to build capabilities from Azure components that are in General Availability where we judge these to be mature enough
8. Can you please disclose the name of the incumbent supplier?
The current supplier is Cadence. We are not reprocuring the same service and looking for a supplier that best matches our new requirements.
9. In all your evidence you ask for 'central government' experience. Please can you confirm why central government experience is necessary.
The preference is that the supplier has experience and knowledge of working in a large public sector organsiation (e.g., central government departments or the NHS). Public sector bodies are governed by law and accountable for public duties. We are happy to consider suppliers who can demonstrate evidence and an understanding of working to those frameworks.
10. Please could you state the security requirements if any?
As a minimum requirement all staff that come on site must be subject to the HMG Baseline Personnel Security Standard, and the supplier must be able to demonstrate that the checks have been carried out satisfactorily. Further information can be found from the Digital Outcomes and Specialists 3 call-off contract :

We consider the folllowing areas to be applicable:
* Part B Section 4 on Staff Vetting T&Cs.
* Part B Section 15.6 on Buyer Data T&Cs.
* Part B section 20 on Security T&Cs.