Government Digital Service, part of Cabinet Office

WP1702: Digital Capability for Urgent EU Exit Requirements

Incomplete applications

23
Incomplete applications
17 SME, 6 large

Completed applications

45
Completed applications
30 SME, 15 large
Important dates
Opportunity attribute name Opportunity attribute value
Published Wednesday 15 May 2019
Deadline for asking questions Wednesday 22 May 2019 at 11:59pm GMT
Closing date for applications Wednesday 29 May 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 Monday 15 July 2019
Expected contract length 12 Months
Location London
Organisation the work is for Government Digital Service, part of Cabinet Office
Budget range There is no commitment to minimum spend over the term of the contract.

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.

This is the second of a series of similar contracts for resourcing in this space.
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 have designed 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
  • Show how you would reliably be able to deploy an Agile discovery or development team for a digital project within 1-2 weeks of a Statement of Work being issued.
  • Under this contract, you would need to deploy multiple teams for different digital projects and locations. How many teams could you field, and how would you sustain this?
  • This contract would place variable demands on your DDAT resource pool. If you have other contracts that place conflicting demands, tell us how will manage this.
  • Under this contract, you would need to deploy digital teams to different sites throughout the United Kingdom. Give up to six brief examples showing you can provide national coverage.
  • Alongside the teams you deploy, you will need to liaise with and support GDS in overseeing the work. How will your Project Manager go about doing this?
  • DISCOVERY: Give an example of how you have formed a multi-disciplinary team, with the right skills and attitudes, to deliver digital outcomes for a discovery phase
  • DEVELOPMENT: Give an example of how you have formed a multi-disciplinary team, with the right skills and attitudes, to deliver digital outcomes for an alpha phase
Nice-to-have skills and experience
  • How do you identify digital staff who have, or are capable of achieving, security clearance? At what stage does this take place.
  • SERVICE ASSESSMENT: Tell us about how one of your teams has developed a piece of work that has successfully passed a service assessment, or equivalent.
  • SECURITY ASSESSMENT: Tell us about how one of your teams has developed a piece of work that has successfully passed a security assessment, or equivalent.

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 approach to deploying teams to different areas of the country
  • Your approach to recruiting and onboarding teams
  • Your approach to fielding a discovery team with reference to DDAT roles, including the forming and make up of the team
  • Your approach to fielding a development team with reference to DDAT roles, including the forming and make up of the team
  • Your approach to sourcing security cleared staff, and your approach to getting staff security clearance
  • Your understanding of DDAT roles (key roles may include: Delivery manager, Technical architect, Web operations engineer, User Researcher, Service Designer)
  • Your understanding of the Digital Service Standard and Government Design Principles
  • Your ability to pass service assessments and security assessments
Cultural fit criteria
  • You approach to embedding a team quickly within organisations with differing cultures
  • Your approach to project managing multiple teams
  • Your ability to align with public sector values
Payment approach Time and materials
Assessment methods
  • Written proposal
  • Case study
  • Work history
  • Presentation
Evaluation weighting

Technical competence

65%

Cultural fit

15%

Price

20%

Questions asked by suppliers

Questions asked by suppliers
Supplier question Buyer answer
1. What is the timetable for unsuccessful suppliers receiving feedback on WP1701? Initial feedback has now been provided to all unsuccessful suppliers. Where additional feedback has been requested, we hope to respond by COP Friday 24th May, 2019.
2. What skillset are you looking for please? e.g. Java,.Net etc At this point, we are not looking for specific programming languages or frameworks, we are looking for the ability to deliver digital skills for this contract more broadly.
3. This opportunity is the same as WP1701 in every detail, other than the essential and nice to have skills. Is this a re-tender of the original opportunity or is this a separate requirement for a similar supplier? This is the second of 3 planned opportunities, with WP1701 being the first; https://www.digitalmarketplace.service.gov.uk/digital-outcomes-and-specialists/opportunities/9395 .This is a separate requirement looking for another supplier.
4. As per the earlier tender exercise, there is no specific mention of Testing or QA expertise which may be required to deliver the required results. At 2i Testing are keen to be involved as we have the required test expertise and Government experience. Is there a way of finding partner organisations that we can work with to support and enhance their bid with our testing skills ? We are supportive of consortium bids, and would encourage interested suppliers to get in touch with one another to prepare such bids.
5. Re.' Under this contract, you would need to deploy digital teams to different sites throughout the United Kingdom. Give up to six brief examples showing you can provide national coverage.' – We are limited to 100 words so please can you clarify what format you'd like the examples? Are we able to add these in addition to the 100 word answer? The 100 word limit is set by the system.

The focus of this question is on your national coverage. We are interested in where you worked, more than the specifics of any projects. For example: "We worked with the Forestry Commission in Edinburgh to design a website", or "We ran a discovery in Truro for Cornwall Council".

Scoring is not based on the number of examples, but the range of coverage. Six examples from the south east of England, would not meet our requirements.
6. We applied for this before and did not get a positive result. Can we apply again or are we automatically excluded? Each supplier is scored on the merits of their application for this tender - we will not take into account evidence from WP1701. It is a clean slate.
7. Please can you confirm whether the buyer is aware that bidders only have 100 words to respond to each of the skills/experience criteria? Can you clarify how you expect bidders to provide an overview of up to 6 example projects within that word limit as requested in the fourth of the essential skills questions – "Give up to six brief examples showing you can provide national coverage"? The 100 word limit is set by the system.

The focus of this question is on your national coverage. We are interested in where you worked, more than the specifics of any projects. For example: "We worked with the Forestry Commission in Edinburgh to design a website", or "We ran a discovery in Truro for Cornwall Council".

Scoring is not based on the number of examples, but the range of coverage. Six examples from the south east of England, would not meet our requirements.
8. What is the average supplier payment performance (i.e. the time taken to pay suppliers)? What is the department's average supplier payment performance to SME suppliers? Inline with the Prompt payment code Cabinet Office endeavours to pay suppliers in 30 days, with a maximum of 60 days. We intend to pay suppliers as promptly as possible.
9. Who was the successful bidder on the previous opportunity (WP1701)? We are at the Intent to Award stage and are currently in voluntary standstill. We will publish the outcome to WP1701 to the Digital Marketplace after the contract is signed.
10. Will preference be given to those suppliers shortlisted on the first opportunity (WP1701)? No, this is a new opportunity and we welcome and encourage bids from both new and repeat suppliers.
11. For the third question, please could you confirm that you would not score 3 if you do not have conflicting contracts and that you are looking for an answer that says what you would do should this occur? Question 3's focus is on ensuring that, should any competing contracts exist, that the supplier is still able to fulfil the requirement. It will not exclude suppliers who have other contracts, provided we can be assured of delivery.
12. Whilst reworded from the previous opportunity, the service assessment question still asks for a single example. Please can you say whether you are looking for multiple examples to achieve a 3, as previously, and whether this also applies to the security assessment question? To achieve a score of three the answer must go above and boyond our stated requirement. We have asked you to show us how one of your team has passed a service assessment. To exceed this, you could show us how multiple teams have passed service assessments, or how one team has passed multiple service assessments.

This reasoning would also apply to the security assessment.
13. Do you have an expected day rate (or range) for individual roles for this opportunity?

For example, if you require the supplier to provide multiple teams working on concurrent statements of work (e.g. 15 people at once), this would likely quickly draw down the £1m budget.
Price is one of the elements of the assessment stage and so there will be competitive pressure on the pricing element.

Part of our model for this is to refresh the contracts as needed. It may be that a contract will have it's budget exhausted within the year, and we would go back out to market.
14. Assuming a day rate of about £750, and 220 working days a year, the £1M budget only allows for about six people. How does this match your expectation for 3-5 concurrent Statements of Work? Your team complement for Discovery/Delivery teams suggests a need for at least 15-25 people. The contract is aimed at fulfilling short term needs, rather than longer term requirements. We do not consider it likely, as per your example, that individuals would be placed for a year.
15. We assume the 1-2 week SLA for assigning a team onsite starts from the formal sign-off of an SOW. Will suppliers be briefed prior to an SOW being issued (as they will participate in its creation?), ie will there be warning upfront of an SOW being signed-off, enabling a longer lead-time for lining up a team in parallel to SOW creation? If so, how long may this be? The assumption that the turn around time being based on formal SOW sign-off is correct. We will endeavour to give the supplier as much earlier sight of their potential work as possible. It is difficult to say how long this may typically be and is likely to vary significantly.
16. We understand that a number of suppliers will be appointed to a rota for GDS to assign work to, and that if any one supplier cannot meet the timeframes/skillset/location for an opportunity in their turn, the opportunity will pass to one of the other suppliers on the rota. How will GDS manage a supplier who consistently cannot meet demand in their turn? We will be undertaking contract and supplier management to ensure performance levels. Should there be concerns about service levels we will work with the supplier to correct these, but we will of course consider other options should performance not improve.
17. The cost of maintaining a resource pool/bench to meet the lead-time SLAs would require any company to allow for under utilisation within their rates/margins – waste which GDS ultimately will pay for. Has GDS considered the quality/cost implications of the SLA (a company with little or no bench will be investing all/most their fees in the calibre of their people)? It is up to suppliers how they manage their readiness and ability to deliver resources quickly.

We accept there may be a price premium because of the speed of response that we need.

To be clear: there are no Service Level Agreement under the contract, and we will be managing supplier performance using a balanced scorecard.
18. How much demand does GDS foresee for individuals as opposed to teams? It is difficult to give an exact share, however we would expect that the majority of the demand will be for teams rather than individuals.