Fusion21 has just launched its new national Workplace and Facilities Framework. The framework has six lots, with over 60 suppliers, aiming to deliver up to £1.1 billion of services over the next four years. We are proud to have secured a place for one of our clients.
Our client is a security provider in London, who we have supported for a number of years to secure contracts with London local authorities, the NHS and various housing associations.
The Fusion21 Workplace and Facilities Framework comprises the following lots:
- Lot 1 – FM Principal Contractor
- Lot 2 – FM Managing Agent
- Lot 3 – Cleaning & Washroom Services
- Lot 4 – Security Services
- Lot 5 – Waste Management
- Lot 6 – Building Engineering Services (M&E)
Of these, we were bidding for just lot 4 security services.
The director of operations at Fusion21, Peter Francis, made the following statement regarding the framework:
“The new framework will provide a range of FM solutions to Fusion21 members, whilst giving them access to qualified and experienced staff with particular experience of facilities management.
“A real benefit to our members and their communities is the social value delivery that is aligned to organisational priorities and can be monitored and reported against for all call-offs.”
An overview of the tender
Two of our bid writers worked collaboratively on this project. They have both worked with the client previously, and therefore had a good understanding of their organisation and security tenders in general. Fusion21 used the open procedure for this procurement, meaning there was just one stage for both SQ and tender questions.
- Around 14,000 words were required for the bid, covering seven quality questions, and two extensive qualification questionnaire sections covering GDPR and health and safety capability (PAS91)
- Stand-out questions in the tender included:
- Health and safety: this focused on health and safety culture within the organisation rather than actual policies/procedures, such as ensuring accountability, providing effective H&S leadership and communicating H&S responsibilities to employees
- Social value: the buyer provided a “social value service credit guidance” which initiatives had to be aligned to – e.g. each initiative was assigned a number of credits and at least 10 credits had to be provided per £100k of contract value. The example in the question gave £500k per year of the contract (over three years) totalling 1,040 credits, meaning we had to work closely with the client to meet the requirements and provide the most beneficial initiatives for the buyer, as this was obviously a priority
- Cost control certainty: this question was quite complex around cost certainty and value engineering, where we had to highlight evidence of budgetary compliance and cost savings, e.g. by creating site specific designs and introducing technologies to reduce costs
The main challenges of this tender
- As detailed above, the questions were quite complex in themselves – the health and safety culture and the very specific social value requests, which from our side as bid writers meant an in-depth interview with the client to discuss
- The qualification questionnaire was very extensive, with the PAS91 section covering 11 separate questions and requiring lots of additional H&S information from the client, such as proof of access to H&S advice, policies and continuous improvement of H&S training
- The GDPR section of the qualification questionnaire was also extensive and is a common topic in large frameworks. This required lots of detail regarding data protection policies and anti-virus software, and compliance with GDPR regulations
- A couple of the questions (e.g. the risk question) asked about wider market factors such as Brexit and COVID-19 and how to manage these risks to maintain service resilience. Again, we worked with the client to establish feasible ways of managing this, especially considering the unpredictable nature of the pandemic
- The evaluation weighting was 60:40 quality:price, so an emphasis on the quality aspect of the tender was important in order to score highly overall
- Each question had a very tight character limit, which made it challenging to convey all the required information; we managed this by writing succinctly and concisely – something we are very used to as bid writers.
We were delighted to hear in February that our client had successfully secured a place on the Fusion21 framework, and we hope it is very lucrative for them.
Tender writing support for frameworks
Our team of professional tender writers have a vast amount of experience in securing framework contracts for our clients. Frameworks are a great way to secure work with various buyers under one agreement and one tender process, and are usually split into different work streams and/or geographical locations.
To discuss how we can support your organisation to write tenders for framework bids please contact our team today.