Helping SMEs Compete for major government contracts
Posted on 30th June 2021 at 13:41
QTM Help IT SMEs compete for major government contracts via the Accord SME Alliance!
At the start of this Parliamentary session the Cabinet Office set targets for Government Departments specifying that a percentage of business must be transacted through SMEs. This target was set at 33% and to be achieved by March 2022, thus opening the door for many smaller IT companies to compete for large government contracts. However, as many of these companies have specialised skillsets, they alone cannot always make an acceptable bid for much of this work. In addition, many are not on the requisite government frameworks to even see the opportunity. QTM have had a close association to a major Government Department for many years and were aware of the desire to disaggregate their current long running contract. Through our large team of employees and associates, QTM currently support the delivery via a number of SIs. As specialists in software testing, QTM were interested in the Software Testing aspects of any competition, however being realistic it was clear that one SME alone could not win business of this size and criticality.
At QTM we have addressed this issue by recently establishing the Accord SME Alliance.
Given the relationships that QTM have with many of the major System Integrators (SIs), coupled with the SME requirement from the Department, QTM were approached to support multiple bids.
The early RFPs required a wider range of skills than QTM could provide, so after contacting several SMEs where we had either personal or previous working relationships, QTM established an alliance of SMEs to join and support these bids. Working with the alliance means that we can now compete for work that would generally be outside of any individual SME’s capability. After only three months, the Accord SME Alliance comprises of around 20 members, geographically dispersed throughout the UK. With an array of complimentary skillsets from the members, Accord SME Alliance can now support these SIs in delivering services to their clients (freeing them from the burden of maintaining their own ecosystem) or, where appropriate, bid for work directly.
Our engagement is changing daily and in the first three months of formation, the Accord SME Alliance has already collaborated on six bids with five Sis. These six bids alone are multi-year deals with a total contract value exceeding £375m.
As we have moved forward, the alliance resource pool has gained 100’s of capable technology professionals supporting agile and hybrid projects, with skills across the Systems Development & Testing Life Cycle. Specialist skills such as integration, full stack analytics, DevOps, cyber security, large data management, data acquisition & pipelining, Microsoft SharePoint, Power Apps, training package development, service desk and content provision. As we identify the need for other skills or locations, we are approaching other SMEs to join us as part of the Alliance. In addition to the skills, capability, financial stability and reputation, the social value and community support aspects are important to us when recruiting new partners. We want to be seen to be supporting the growth of the SME community and the latent social value bringing about the re-birth of local areas following the pandemic.
QTM are a Telford based consultancy & recruitment company specialising in Software Testing, Performance Testing and Project & Programme Management. The company was set up by a group of colleagues with more than 100 years’ experience of developing & maintaining IT services to Central Government. Additionally, the company principals have held senior positions with Central Government Departments, EDS, Capgemini & Fujitsu. The QTM business model has been, largely, to support Systems Integrators in their delivery predominantly to Government clients supplemented by direct support of several clients.
For more information, or if you are an SME and are interested in joining the Alliance please contact:
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