Much to do with NS2
Now that the dust has settled, our newest Operations Assistants Hannah, Elliot and Danny take a look back over the Network Services 2 application process and how it all went.
Even with the knowledge that NS2 was going to be a large framework, I hadn’t quite anticipated the sheer volume of work that would be required for submission. However, once this became clear we set about breaking the ITT down into palatable chunks – both for clients and ourselves. I found this exercise extremely useful, and it was encouraging to see the confidence and professionality of my colleagues. Even though we had a massive task ahead, I didn’t doubt our ability to pull it off successfully.
Next up was the drafting and reviewing process. We calculated that in total, as a team we read over 1.2 million words… for reference that’s double the length of War and Peace, or all of the Harry Potter books combined! From service descriptions to case studies, we all learned a lot about network connectivity and telephony systems. I actually really enjoyed the reviewing process (although I am pleased to now be reading about something other than network services!), and as a result my proof reading skills have definitely improved.
A particularly memorable part of this process involved acquiring the dreaded attachment 2bs… if you know, you know.
My favourite stage of the framework application was witnessing each client pass our final QA (i.e. moving each client post-it note across our Kanban wall), and pressing the ‘Submit’ button on each application. Although inputting all answers into the CCS portal wasn’t quite so exciting, I found it rewarding to see just how much work we had successfully finalised and submitted.
Before NS2’s application process began, I was pre-warned by my colleagues that it was going to be a big one, and they weren’t wrong! With a lot of written responses required by clients to submit their application, we carried out plenty of reviewing and feedback for different elements of the application. It wasn’t long before I was into the swing of it (wading through technical questions and case study drafts) and I felt confident, and really enjoyed, assisting the clients through the application journey.
The whole team handled it well with good processes and we all managed to make it fun and kept our heads! My favourite part was being able to work closely with a client to tick off key pieces of work for the application. Working with them to make drafts and changes to the lengthy Award Questionnaire in particular, and being able to finalise it after countless edits.
After getting more practice and experience in dealing with CCS’ demands, and working my way through the NS2 application process, I feel I’ve it has massively helped my understanding of what goes into a major framework and how those without support could potentially struggle.
Having started our time at Advice Cloud halfway through the application process for DAS, and having seemingly survived that just fine, it was time for us to tackle the full application process of NS2.
After easing into the framework pre-New Year, we arrived back in January after a relaxing Christmas break to what appeared to be an exponentially growing workload. January was a flurry of case studies, services descriptions, Attachment 2bs, unclear clarification from CCS, confusion about Key Subcontractors, and as Hannah mentioned above, 1200000 WORDS! Needless to say however, all of our amazing clients pulled through and submitted their high-quality applications on time.
Sitting in Fatto a Mano, slightly shell shocked, on Thursday 31st January at about 1pm, we had a rewarding pizza and beer, and made sure our Advisor Bob was duly thanked.
Congratulations to all of our clients on getting everything submitted on time! Now we wait for the feedback and results.
Overall, NS2 has certainly been a challenging framework, and it’s safe to say that the volume of work was massive. However, we have learned so much from the process, and are extremely proud of what our clients have achieved and submitted. We have also received some wonderful feedback from clients, which makes all the hard work worthwhile 😊.