Government Digital Service, part of Cabinet Office

WP1701: Digital Capability for Urgent EU Exit Requirements

Incomplete applications

35
Incomplete applications
27 SME, 8 large

Completed applications

66
Completed applications
39 SME, 27 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Friday 29 March 2019
Deadline for asking questions Friday 5 April 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Friday 12 April 2019 at 11:59pm GMT

Overview

Overview
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Summary of the work GDS require a supplier that can provide teams, or resources to supplement existing teams, to work on urgent EU Exit related projects. Individual statements of work (SoW) will be agreed and aligned to the discrete delivery phases that are required.
Latest start date Friday 31 May 2019
Expected contract length 12 months
Location London
Organisation the work is for Government Digital Service, part of Cabinet Office
Budget range The maximum spend under the contract will be £1 million

About the work

About the work
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Why the work is being done There will be a need for a flexible supplier to respond to urgent support requests received by GDS from departments affected by EU Exit.

We expect this contract to fulfil three different types of need:

Discovery or Alpha teams (five resources typically)
Delivery (five to ten resources typically)
Occasional one-off resource replacement

The core capabilities for the proposed contract would be:
product management
delivery management
user research
software development

This will be a starter contract to allow time-critical work relating to EU Exit to commence, while alternative arrangements are put in place.
Problem to be solved UK Government needs access at short notice to resources that can design, build, and deliver digital services in the wake of EU Exit. We are looking at placing teams within two weeks to deliver digital outcomes.
Who the users are and what they need to do As a department/ALB, I need to run discoveries and develop digital services to design, build and run services that are affected by EU Exit. I may need a full team, or a number of staff to complement a team I have.
Early market engagement An early engagement presentation took place on the 7th March.

The slides and Q&A from the PTME session are available here: https://sites.google.com/view/ptme-for-dos-capability/home?authuser=1
Any work that’s already been done Projects are at various stages and suppliers will be briefed relative to specific statements of work.
Existing team The supplier will work with internal government stakeholders from a range of disciplines, including architecture, security, policy, service and product management, finance, and delivery management. Knowledge transfer back into HMG will be required to enable HMG to improve internal capability to build and support the services.

Where required in the development cycle, collaboration with other suppliers may be necessary, e.g., data extract, transformation, load and migration, and in the setting up of dev/test environments. This contract will not prevent us from using other commercial arrangements, including using capability contracts, to pull together a team from a range of suppliers.
Current phase Not started

Work setup

Work setup
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Address where the work will take place It is expected that the majority of work will take place inside the M25, however there will be requirements around the UK that we would expect to be supported also.

The primary base will be detailed in each Statement of Work (SoW) and expenses will not form part of the cost unless the supplier is asked to work from a secondary location instead during the execution of the work relating to the SoW. e.g. If SoW primary base is in Coventry then no expenses will be paid for Coventry.
Working arrangements Suppliers will deploy teams, or part teams, at short notice working with departments and their arms length bodies to deliver discovery or development outcomes. The majority of work will be based on customer sites - the sites and working arrangements for a particular project will be specified in a Statement of Work.

Typical discovery teams might consist of: User Researcher, Service Designer, Product Manager, Delivery Manager, Technical Architect.

Typical development teams might consist of: Delivery Manager, Product Manager, Developers, Web Ops Engineer, Content Designer, Performance Analyst, User Researcher, Interaction Designer.

We anticipate a maximum of 3-5 concurrent Statement of Work.
Security clearance Resources may be required to be security cleared. If not currently held the resources must meet the criteria and be willing to go through the process at the cost of the Supplier. GDS is willing to sponsor supplier staff through the clearance process.

Additional information

Additional information
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Additional terms and conditions All expenses must be pre-agreed with between the parties and must comply with the Cabinet Office (CO) Travel and Subsistence (T&S) Policy.

All vendors are obliged to provide sufficient guarantees to implement appropriate technical and organisational measures so that the processing meets the requirements of GDPR and ensures the protection of the rights of data subjects. For further information please see the Information Commissioner's Office website:https://ico.org.uk/for-organisations/data-protection-reform/overview-of-the-gdpr/

We will design a specific SOW for this contract. This will be shared with shortlisted suppliers.

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
  • The ability to deploy a development or discovery team within one to two weeks of a Statement of Work being issued (show how you will do this for this contract)
  • The ability to deploy three or more teams at the same time, to work on different Statements of Work (show how you will do this for this contract)
  • Geographically mobile - able to deploy teams all over the country (give an example that shows you successfully delivering this element)
  • Reliable processes to source, onboard, and deploy teams to deliver discovery or development outcomes (give an outline of your process)
  • Demonstrable ability to assemble a multi-disciplinary discovery team to deliver digital outcomes (give an example that shows you successfully delivering this element)
  • Demonstrable ability to assemble a multi-disciplinary development team to deliver digital outcomes (give an example that shows you successfully delivering this element)
  • The ability for a team to embed in a customer organisation and deliver at pace (give an example that shows you successfully delivering this element)
  • Reliable processes to identify staff who have, or are capable of achieving, security clearance (give an outline of your process)
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • Previous experience working with the public sector (give an example that shows you successfully delivering this element)
  • Experience of working on government services using the Digital Service Standard and Government Design Principles (give an example that shows you successfully delivering this element)

How suppliers will be evaluated

How suppliers will be evaluated
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
How many suppliers to evaluate 5
Proposal criteria
  • Your approach to rapidly deploying a team
  • Your approach to deploying multiple teams at once
  • Your ability to deploy teams to different areas of the country
  • Your approach to recruiting and onboarding teams
  • Your approach to building a discovery team
  • Your approach to building a development team
  • Your approach to sourcing security cleared staff, and your approach to getting staff security clearance
  • Your ability to show an understanding of DDAT roles by providing job descriptions and sample CVs. We plan to evaluate sample roles: Delivery manager,Technical architect,Web operations engineer,User Researcher,Service Designer
  • Your understanding of the Digital Service Standard and Government Design Principles
Cultural fit criteria
  • You approach to embedding a team quickly within organisations with differing cultures
  • Your approach to working with the public sector
  • Your approach to Data Protection compliance
Payment approach Time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Work history
  • Reference
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

50%

Cultural fit

20%

Price

30%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. Against some of the essential skills, you advise that suppliers should "(show how you will do this, for this contract.)" Does this mean, therefore that, against those skills, you do not wish us to provide examples of where we have done this previously? One of the ways that you could show how you would do something is to show how you have done something similar in the past. You could also describe the processes and procedures you have in place for doing that thing going forward. We want to enable you to use a range of evidence to respond to our criteria.
2. Are you aware that suppliers can only provide 100 word answers to each question listed under "Skills and experience"? The type of questions asked suggest you are looking for a longer response.

Can you please confirm exactly what you are looking for in a response and whether you are expecting both an explanation and an example for each answer within the 100 word limit?
We recognise that the word limit is a constraint - we intend to revisit areas that require more rigour at the assessment stage. You should try to ensure your answers hit certain key points:

For evidence-based responses include: the context for the work; the challenges you faced; the actions you took; and the outcomes of your actions.

For process-based responses include: what the process does; an outline of the process referencing key staff or systems; and why we should have confidence in the process (e.g. alignment with external standards (ISO etc.), a proven track-record of success, and so on).
3. We note that there was an early engagement in March, which suppliers were invited to attend this and how were they selected? All Digital Outcomes and Services 3 Lot 1 suppliers were invited using the main contact details that had been provided to Crown Commercial Service. There was no selection or limit on attendance at the webinar.
4. The PTME encourages subcontracting and partnering to enable SMEs to be competitive. Could you provide a forum in which suppliers can publicly register their interest so that they can contact each other about potential partnerships/subcontracting? We have not set up a forum as you describe.

You can download a list of Digital Outcomes and Services 3 Lot 1 suppliers from https://www.digitalmarketplace.service.gov.uk/buyers/frameworks/digital-outcomes-and-specialists-3/requirements/digital-outcomes. The list gives the capabilities that the supplier covers, along with the regional areas of operation, and this may enable you to identify partners that may be a good fit for your organisation.
5. If you intend to contract with more than one organisation to deliver these SoWs, why are you limiting the evaluation to only 5 suppliers? We will be undertaking the procurements for each contract separately and sequentially. As such the procurements for the other two contracts will go live over the coming weeks.
6. Would you consider applications for Test resources under this tender ? They are not specifically mentioned but may be required alongside the resources shown. We do not expect to source testing as a stand-alone component under this agreement; some testing might be required as part of another capability component.
7. In your slide deck under FAQ's. You've stated that SoWs will be outcome based for the supply of teams but in the DOS description you've stated a requirement for "Occasional one-off resource replacement"to augment internal teams.

As an organisation, we prefer to provide teams as opposed to single resources into existing teams. Will our organisation be looked upon unfavourably if we don't wish to provide single resources?
We anticipate that part of the demand under this agreement will be for individuals to complete teams although we do not expect this to be a major part of the demand.

If you are unable to provide individuals it means that your tender would not score as well as if you were able to provide individuals. Also it means that, were you to be appointed, you would not be able to allocated work that requires individuals to be resourced.
8. As we are being provided with a SOW, and related work on Brexit is fraught with challenges, are Suppliers required to accept any financial risk? On a Statement of Work by Statement of Work basis, we would expect the work to be settled and agreed - you would be paid for the work under the SOW. Work under an SOW would not be done 'at risk'.

The uncertainty you describe is why we have expressed the value of the contract as up to £1M, and have not committed to a minimum value.
9. We have a number of Subject Matter Experts who would lead on delivery but who we would assign would depend on availability and the location required. We would normally provide relevant references from the technical Subject Matter Experts therefore can you provide estimated requirement date start, technical skills and exact location to allow us to align appropriate references? We will be contracting with a supplier to provide teams/part-teams with the appropriate capabilities, and will not be contracting on the basis of specific, identified individuals. It will be for the supplier to provide capable resources, but they will be free to determine who that should be at a particular point in time.

We will work with the appointed supplier to provide a forward view of requirements to support their resource management. The nature of this contract is that it operates in a rapidly changing environment.
10. Please would you advise how this differs from the recent Cabinet Office procurement: 'Provision of Consultancy for Cabinet Office Programme Delivery' (CCCC 18B08); which also had a requirement for DD&T resources across Government Departments, one of which bidders were advised was GDS? No it does not bar you, however, if not currently held the resources must meet the criteria and be willing to go through the process at the cost of the Supplier. GDS is willing to sponsor supplier staff through the clearance process.

To gain Security Check clearance, for example, you will normally need to have been a UK resident for a minimum of 5 years, and will need to successfully complete all stages of the vetting process which includes:

Baseline Personnel Security Standard
Departmental/Company Records Check
Security Questionnaire
Criminal Record Check
Credit Reference Check
Security Service Check
11. Please would you advise how this differs from the recent Cabinet Office procurement: 'Provision of Consultancy for Cabinet Office Programme Delivery' (CCCC 18B08); which also had a requirement for DD&T resources across Government Departments, one of which bidders were advised was GDS? The Cabinet Office procurement is for the provision of management consultancy across a range of areas - one of which is Digital Data and Technology - in order to support EU Exit. The DOS contract will be for the delivery of a range of digital outcomes relating to EU Exit. One is a resourcing contract, and the other a contract for outcomes.

They sit side-by-side to support the delivery of EU Exit, and we will be working with the Cabinet Office team to ensure that the right work goes through the right contract.
12. We don't have experience of the security clearance system, does that bar us from applying? No it does not bar you, however, if not currently held the resources must meet the criteria and be willing to go through the process at the cost of the Supplier. GDS is willing to sponsor supplier staff through the clearance process.

To gain Security Check clearance, for example, you will normally need to have been a UK resident for a minimum of 5 years, and will need to successfully complete all stages of the vetting process which includes:

Baseline Personnel Security Standard
Departmental/Company Records Check
Security Questionnaire
Criminal Record Check
Credit Reference Check
Security Service Check
13. Will the client require interviews with the Subject Matter Experts that we propose to conduct the service? We expect a presentation to form part of our assessment process, and will confirm the format to shortlisted suppliers.
14. Do the bidders need to identify all partners or subcontracting bodies during the bid phase? We would seek to offer devops/webops/delivery management but aren't able to offer the complete range of skills and hence would need to partner whether we prime'd or sub'd. A supplier should be able to identify those subcontractors and partners that they rely upon in their tender submission. For example, you do not list user research as a capability that you offer in house - therefore if it formed part of your bid then you should be able to identify how you would provide user research under this contract - that is, by identifying the partner or subcontractor.

We would not require the bidder to highlight all sub-contractors at assessment stage, and we would be open to suppliers taking on new subcontractors during the life of the contract.
15. "You have asked this question twice – Demonstrable ability to assemble a multi-disciplinary discovery team to deliver digital outcomes (give an example that shows you successfully delivering this element). Are you looking for two examples? There are two questions that are very similar however one asked for ability to assemble a multi-disciplinary discovery team and one asked for ability to assemble a multi-disciplinary development team
16. Do you just want a bench? The contract will be to deliver digital outcomes relating to EU Exit. It will be for the supplier to determine how they manage their staff to deliver those outcomes. We do not just want a bench of staff to call on.
17. We are able to supply of individual specialists rather than whole teams. Are we precluded from applying for this opportunity, given that we probably can't supply ALL of the roles listed? The contract is for the provision of a range of roles. If you are able to support only some of the roles, it may work best for you to partner in some way with another supplier, or suppliers, to offer the full range. This may be as a prime or a subcontractor.
18. Would it be acceptable to apply monthly invoicing based on successful completion of deliverables for the SoW work? Payment terms will be agreed at the start of the Statement of Work. We expect suppliers to invoice monthly in arrears based on that SOW.
19. How will GDS be selecting people as part of these outcomes; will they be interviewed or just accepted? We will be evaluating suppliers on their ability to provide resources that have the necessary skills and experience to deliver the outcomes we need. It is the supplier's role to identify or recruit resources.

We will not be testing specific resources, but it may work well for a supplier to include representatives of some of the roles in their presentation team.
20. Are any technical or cultural fit tests needed? See the the section "How suppliers will be evaluated". The 'Cultural Fit' elements we have indicated will be tested at the assessment stage; technical tests may be included as part of elements like, for example, 'Your approach to building a development team'.
21. You have a duplicate question in your initial questions; was this in error? There is some duplication between lines 10 and 12 - 10 is an error, and line 12 gives the correct answer to the question.
22. Do the suppliers need the resources to be their own employees or are you ok with recruitment based organisation hiring contractors to then be body shopped into the projects? We are content for a supplier to subcontract, however suppliers must take direct contractual responsibility and full accountability for delivering the services offered. We will be evaluating suppliers on their ability to assemble and embed a team that can deliver an outcome.
23. Could you confirm the link for the early engagement presentation that took place on the 7th March? The link provided appears to be broken. https://sites.google.com/view/ptme-for-dos-capability/home?authuser=1
24. Can you please confirm whether there are incumbents currently working in this way with HMG? This is a new contract so there are no incumbents. There are various suppliers in other parts of government doing digital transformation work relating to EU Exit, but we do not have a central register of them.
25. Can you please clarify whether all the Statements of Work will be awarded to one company or multiple companies that are successful through this tender? A single supplier will be awarded this contract through this tender activity. We are expecting to award multiple contracts of this type over time to cater for demand across government. Work will be shared between these contracts on a strict rotational basis.
26. n your response to question 5 submitted already, you state 'We will be undertaking the procurements for each contract separately and sequentially'. How is each separate contract defined and will it be on a regional basis of which this ITT is for London and the South East? Each separate contract will be for the whole of the UK. Work will be shared between the contracts on a strict rotation basis.
27. Will any work be delivered in Scotland or Northern Ireland, and if so, roughly what percentage of the contract? It is possible that work will be delivered in Scotland and Northern Ireland, to the extent that Government departments and their Arms Length bodies are based there. We would expect the work to be a low percentage of the overall contract value but do not have exact figures at this point.
28. Is there anything preventing a supplier from submitting a response as a sole-supplier *in addition to* being in a consortium? A supplier would only be able to submit a single tender as a prime contractor. A supplier could submit a tender as a prime, while also being a subcontractor on a tender by another supplier. Suppliers would be responsible for putting appropriate ethical walls in place in such a case, and ensuring no collusion takes place.
29. The brief asks 'Resources may be required to be security cleared. If not currently held the resources must meet the criteria'. Can you confirm that we will not be marked down if we can supply 'SC ready' resources and not full SC resources? We can confirm that a supplier who does not have existing SC cleared resources, but instead has "SC ready" staff and can demonstrate an understanding of the processes required to get those staff cleared will be able to achieve a mark of "Met" for the relevant criteria.
30. During the pre-engagement call, you stated that SME consortiums would be actively encouraged. How do we formally make your aware of our consortium and its members, without using wordcount in one of our responses? Can we email you directly? We welcome consortium bids, and there is no need to notify us in order to submit such a bid. The consortium will need to select one of its members to be the 'prime' who submits the bid, and then that supplier's bid should reflect where it relies on subcontractors to deliver core elements of the service, where appropriate.
31. As per approach in PTME slide 5, will the suppliers on this work still then be able to bid for the individual pieces of work that they are effectively the incumbent for? That would presumably give each of those suppliers a significant advantage for procurement. Also, it implies that the Outcomes won’t be reached and so the individual SOWs (on this framework) can effectively only really be for T&M, or will they cover whole early phases such as Discovery or Alpha? This is no different from any other opportunity on the Digital Marketplace where there is an incumbent. We will take reasonable steps to ensure there is a level playing field. We will ensure transparency by including details of the incumbency in the 'Any work that’s already been done' section. Also, as part of the supplier's deliverables for the individual pieces of work, we will ensure that there is a documented discovery report/handover to ensure that future phases are open and fair.
32. SC is mentioned in slides – what proportion may be SC? Do they accept 2 weeks may not be possible unless happen to have just come off another? We do not know the proportion that may need to be SC cleared however we plan to start the SC clearance process at the beginning of the contract for those resources that are not currently cleared to ensure the winning supplier can meet the demand.

We, realistically, expect SC staff to take longer to source than staff where clearance is not required.
33. The PTME mentioned 3 suppliers and a staggered approach. Will only a single supplier win this opportunity 9395, or will you award a call-off contract to the top 3 of the 5 short-listed suppliers Only one supplier will win this contract; subsequent contracts will be let based on subsequent procurements.
34. The DOS ad states that you envisage 3-5 concurrent SOWs – is that per supplier, or across the 3 suppliers that you intend to appoint? This is per supplier.
35. Projects at “various stages” are mentioned in the DM advert – assume suppliers don’t need to know more at this stage, or for stage 2- i.e. there won’t be a request at Stage 2 to price something that is largely unknown? We expect to ask suppliers to price for a scenario discovery and development team based on a set number of resources and days. The details of the scenarios will be confirmed to shortlisted suppliers. There will not be a request for suppliers to price for something that is unclear.
36. Would you like us to supply answers to every question even the ones which have been duplicated? There are two similar criteria, one relating to a development team and one relating to a discovery team. You should respond to all of the criteria.
37. Can we disregard Question 6 as it is a duplicate? There are no duplicate questions, but there are two similar ones (one relating to a discovery team, and one relating to a development team). Criteria should not be disregarded.
38. The DM Advert states primarily with the M25, but possibly elsewhere, and the PTME asked about numbers UK regions. Can you give an approximate percentage/guess as to what would be inside the M25 vs. the rest of UK? We only have rough estimates at this point, but would expect more than half to be within the M25.
39. Are we correct in understanding that should a successful supplier be awarded a SOW they will be unable to start work on another SOW until the completion of the current SOW? One Supplier will win this contract and we anticipate 3-5 concurrent SOWs at any one time.
40. Please can we confirm if all three successful suppliers, procured through three separate procurements, will be listed under one or separate contracts? A single supplier will be awarded this contract through this tender activity. We are expecting to award multiple contracts of this type. Each contract will be with one supplier.
41. Please can you further clarify how you envisage the assignment of SOW’s by rotation working? A single supplier will be awarded this contract through this tender activity. We are expecting to award multiple contracts of this type over time to cater for demand across government. Work will be shared between these contracts on a strict rotational basis. The attached slide gives a visual representation as to how the rotation of supplier will work. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1uUDi4U6CuP8hiAmNjtAJT_9EsrmU_NPr/view?usp=sharing
42. Please can you provide further clarification around how a successful supplier will be awarded each SOW? Will opportunities be advertised to the three successful suppliers following three successful procurements over the coming weeks? A single supplier will be awarded this contract through this tender activity. We are expecting to award multiple contracts of this type over time to cater for demand across government. Work will be shared between these contracts on a strict rotational basis. The attached slide gives a visual representation as to how the rotation of supplier will work. https://drive.google.com/file/d/1uUDi4U6CuP8hiAmNjtAJT_9EsrmU_NPr/view?usp=sharing