The Post Office, which has around 500,000 customers on their UK home phone and broadband products, appears to have recently issued a new Prior Information Notice (PIN) that seeks suppliers for “a range of goods and services in order to continue to provide telecommunications services” to consumers.
At present the Post Office offers a range of affordable fixed line ADSL and Fibre-to-the-Cabinet (FTTC) based broadband packages, as well as the usual landline home phone services. We believe that their current network is still being supplied as part of a long-running wholesale / managed service agreement with TalkTalk Wholesale, which is NOT to be confused with the retail ISP division of that same business (a very different animal).
Unfortunately the new PIN (2019/S 084-200192), which appears to have been extended for a little longer after initially being due to close last week, doesn’t offer a lot of detail but we do get the gist of what the Post Office are seeking. This may be of interest to some of our more industry orientated readers.
Post Office is procuring a range of goods and services in order to continue to provide telecommunications services to its circa 500,000 home customers. This tendering exercise will not be subject to the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (“PCR 2015”) by virtue of Section 8 PCR 2015. This Prior Information Notice is being issued through tenders electronic daily for several reasons:
1) To obtain the widest possible circulation to interested suppliers;
2) Gauge the market interest in this procurement; and
3) Identify suppliers who would like to assist Post Office to further develop cost-effective, innovative solutions to support its telecommunications services.
A quick look at the original PIN shows that the contract is divided into five lots, which have been defined as Network Services, IT Solutions, Contact Centre Services, Service Management and CPE. The latter tends to mean end-user hardware like broadband routers and WiFi kit etc.
Breakdown of Contract Lots
1) Network Services
Provision of calls, lines and circuits, broadband and associated services to end customers, support, network and calling features.
2) IT Solutions
Billing, payments and debt collection, CRM and associated services, sales and order management, reporting, online sales and self care portal, print supply and fulfilment, CPE (fulfilment, management, refurbishment, returns, disposal) customer communications, IT interfaces with other suppliers, support and service assurance.
3) Contact Centre Services
Customer services (including sales through service capability), contact management (covering telephony, email, white mail, virtual assistant, live chat and natural language (IVR) sales, provisioning, technical support (first line), technical support (escalations/case management), complaints, special care team, revenue management, customer retention.
4) Service Management
Management of the end to end service across all the components including jeopardy management, service assurance, revenue assurance, performance reporting, MI and incident management.
ADSL/Fibre routers (WiFi).
This appears to reflect the root and branch elements of an ISP, which suggests that some of their existing contracts may be due to end in the near future and they’re probably hunting to see if there may be any better solutions available than the one they already have. Hopefully they’ll also want to consider future G.fast or FTTP packages as part of any future deal.
We understand the PIN will soon be followed by a full Request for Proposal (RFP).