Apprenticeships Commissioning Programme Wales Framework Agreement

Apprenticeships Commissioning Programme Wales Framework Agreement

The purpose of the apprenticeships programme is to support people in Wales through high quality learning, in order to provide employers with the relevant skilled people to meet the current and future needs of the Welsh economy.

United Kingdom-Cardiff: Education and training services

2020/S 162-395340

Contract notice


Legal Basis:

Directive 2014/24/EU

Section I: Contracting authority

I.1)Name and addresses

Official name: Welsh Government
Postal address: Corporate Procurement Services, Cathays Park
Town: Cardiff
Postal code: CF10 3NQ
Country: United Kingdom
Telephone: +44 3000623300

I.2)Information about joint procurement

The contract is awarded by a central purchasing body


The procurement documents are available for unrestricted and full direct access, free of charge, at:
Additional information can be obtained from the abovementioned address
Tenders or requests to participate must be submitted electronically via:
Electronic communication requires the use of tools and devices that are not generally available. Unrestricted and full direct access to these tools and devices is possible, free of charge, at:

I.4)Type of the contracting authority

Ministry or any other national or federal authority, including their regional or local subdivisions

I.5)Main activity

General public services

Section II: Object

II.1)Scope of the procurement


Apprenticeships Commissioning Programme Wales Framework Agreement


Reference number: F022/2020/2021

II.1.2)Main CPV code

80000000 Education and training services

II.1.3)Type of contract


II.1.4)Short description:


Through work-based learning the apprenticeship programme will deliver to individuals the skills necessary to embark on successful careers and for employers the relevant skilled people to meet the current and future needs of their businesses and the Welsh economy. Commencing on 1 August 2021 the Apprenticeship framework will run for 4 years until 31 July 2025 (with the option of an extension of up to two years until 31 July 2027).

The framework will be procured under the light touch regime, implemented through regulations 74 – 77 as applied to schedule 3 services of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 (PCR 2015) using a quasi-open procedure.

Please be advised that costs are fixed as set out in the programme specification, as such, there is no commercial evaluation element to this tender.

Please be advised that there have been changes to the Allocations Methodology since the market engagement PIN Event, which was held on 22 July 2020. Please see the updated version, that has been reviewed by a QC, within the Programme Specification document which is attached in the e-tender portal.


II.1.5)Estimated total value

Value excluding VAT: 1 050 000 000.00 GBP

II.1.6)Information about lots

This contract is divided into lots: no

II.2.2)Additional CPV code(s)

80000000 Education and training services
80500000 Training services

II.2.3)Place of performance


II.2.4)Description of the procurement:


The purpose of the apprenticeships programme is to support people in Wales through high quality learning, in order to provide employers with the relevant skilled people to meet the current and future needs of the Welsh economy.

Apprenticeships offer employed learners the opportunity to pursue a foundation apprenticeship, apprenticeship, or higher apprenticeship framework. Degree Apprenticeships are excluded from this procurement.

Each framework specifies the learning activities, including, qualifications covering occupational competencies, the relevant technical knowledge, Essential Skills Wales and Employment Rights and Responsibilities (ERR).

The client is committed to aligning the apprenticeship programme to the needs of the Welsh economy as outlined in its policy and action plan published in February 2017 – Aligning the Apprenticeship model to the needs of the Welsh economy 2017. The focus is on aligning and raising the level of the skills market designed to meet employer needs with a system that is responsive to industry changes, particularly in the sectors that drive growth and prosperity. The policy reflects the step change towards higher level technical and professional skills, promoting efficiency and portability within our priority sectors.

The Welsh Government is of the view that the option to extend the framework beyond four years is likely to be desirable. Individual participants may be on a vocational Apprenticeship programme for up to 4 years. In the event the maximum term of the framework mirrors the maximum duration of a vocational apprenticeship programme, this is likely to result in many apprentices having their learning disrupted as they may be obliged to transfer from an unsuccessful legacy provider to a successful bidder when a future replacement framework is procured. Adopting a 4-year fixed term framework agreement with the ability to extend up to a maximum of 6 years should provide Welsh Government with the opportunity to limit the number of displaced apprentices that may arise if the procurement process had to be repeated more regularly.


II.2.5)Award criteria

Price is not the only award criterion and all criteria are stated only in the procurement documents

II.2.6)Estimated value

Value excluding VAT: 1 050 000 000.00 GBP

II.2.7)Duration of the contract, framework agreement or dynamic purchasing system

Duration in months: 48
This contract is subject to renewal: yes
Description of renewals:

There is an option to extend the framework by 12 months and additional 12 months, if invoked the framework term would be 72 months. Annual programme commissions will be awarded for 2021/22, 2022/23, 2023/24, 2024/25 and 2025/26. If the agreement is extended, programme commissions will be issued for 2026/27 and, possibly, 2027/28.


II.2.10)Information about variants

Variants will be accepted: no

II.2.11)Information about options

Options: yes
Description of options:

Throughout the duration of the agreement or programme commission, the client may seek to continue to improve the apprenticeship programme and to sharpen its focus. To this end, a number of flexibilities and options (including but not limited to varying or introducing new services and pilot schemes) have been incorporated into the agreement and the programme specification. Priorities will be reviewed regularly by the client and Welsh Government Officials and may be revised. This will inform future allocations. Changes to the programme specification will be implemented in accordance with the terms of the agreement as per sections 7.4, 26, 30 of the invitation to tender; B.10, B.16-B.26 pf the programme specification and 4.2 of the framework agreement.


II.2.12)Information about electronic catalogues

II.2.13)Information about European Union funds

The procurement is related to a project and/or programme financed by European Union funds: yes
Identification of the project:

Apprenticeships Wales is part funded by European Social Fund (ESF) money, administered under the European Structural and Investment Funds Programmes 2014-2020.


II.2.14)Additional information

The value range is anticipated to be Min GBP 400 million to max GBP 1.05 billion over the term of the agreement, further details are included in the tender documents.


Section III: Legal, economic, financial and technical information

III.1)Conditions for participation

III.1.1)Suitability to pursue the professional activity, including requirements relating to enrolment on professional or trade registers

List and brief description of conditions:

As stated in the procurement documents.


III.1.2)Economic and financial standing

Selection criteria as stated in the procurement documents

III.1.3)Technical and professional ability

Selection criteria as stated in the procurement documents
III.1.5)Information about reserved contracts
III.2)Conditions related to the contract

III.2.1)Information about a particular profession

Execution of the service is reserved to a particular profession
Reference to the relevant law, regulation or administrative provision:

As stated in the procurement documents.


III.2.2)Contract performance conditions:

As stated in the procurement documents.


III.2.3)Information about staff responsible for the performance of the contract

Obligation to indicate the names and professional qualifications of the staff assigned to performing the contract

Section IV: Procedure


IV.1.1)Type of procedure

Open procedure

IV.1.3)Information about a framework agreement or a dynamic purchasing system

The procurement involves the establishment of a framework agreement
Framework agreement with several operators
In the case of framework agreements, provide justification for any duration exceeding 4 years:

Please see section 11.2.4 for the justification for the framework agreement duration exceeding 4 years.


IV.1.4)Information about reduction of the number of solutions or tenders during negotiation or dialogue
IV.1.6)Information about electronic auction

IV.1.8)Information about the Government Procurement Agreement (GPA)

The procurement is covered by the Government Procurement Agreement: yes
IV.2)Administrative information

IV.2.1)Previous publication concerning this procedure

Notice number in the OJ S: 2020/S 135-333710

IV.2.2)Time limit for receipt of tenders or requests to participate

Date: 12/10/2020
Local time: 14:00
IV.2.3)Estimated date of dispatch of invitations to tender or to participate to selected candidates

IV.2.4)Languages in which tenders or requests to participate may be submitted:

English, Welsh

IV.2.6)Minimum time frame during which the tenderer must maintain the tender

Duration in months: 6 (from the date stated for receipt of tender)

IV.2.7)Conditions for opening of tenders

Date: 12/10/2020
Local time: 14:00

Section VI: Complementary information

VI.1)Information about recurrence

This is a recurrent procurement: yes
Estimated timing for further notices to be published:

4 to 7 years.


VI.2)Information about electronic workflows

VI.3)Additional information:


E-Tender Information:

— the first person from your organisation to use the platform will be required to register on behalf of the organisation;

— registration involves accepting a user agreement, and providing basic information about your organisation and about the user performing the registration;

— the user who performs the registration becomes the super user for the organisation;

— on registering on the platform the super user will select a username and will receive a password;

— the password will be sent by e-mail to the email address that was specified in the user details section of the registration page;

— in order to log-in to the platform please enter your username and password;

— note: if you forget your password then visit the homepage and click ‘Forgot your password?‘;

— registration should only be performed once for each organisation;

— if you think that someone in your organisation may have already registered on this platform then you must not register again;

— please contact the person who registered (i.e. the super user) in order to arrange access to the platform;

— contact the helpdesk immediately if you are unable to contact the super user (for example if they have left your organisation);

— note: if your organisation is already registered on the platform then you must not make any additional registration. Please contact the Helpdesk to gain access to the Platform;

— Tenders must be uploaded to the BravoSolution portal by 2 p.m.

How to find the ITT:

— once logged in you must click on ‘ITT’s Open to all Suppliers’;

— the e-tender references for this contract are: project_45278, itt_82936;

— click on the title to access summary details of the contract. If you are still interested in submitting a tender, click the ‘Express an Interest button’. This will move the ITT from the ‘Open to all Suppliers’ area to the ‘My ITT’s’ on the home page;

— you will then see the full details of the ITT in the qualification and technical envelopes along with any relevant documents in the ‘Attachments’ area;

— should you have any questions on the ITT, please use the ‘Messages’ area to contact the buyer directly – Please do not contact the named person at the top of this notice.

The contracting authority will incorporate a minimum ten day standstill period at the point information on the decision to award the contract is communicated to bidders. Any bidder wishing to appeal the decision to award the contract, or after the award of the contract appeal the contract, shall have the rights set out in Part 3 of the Public Contracts Regulations 2015.

NOTE: The authority is using eTenderwales to carry out this procurement process. To obtain further information record your interest on Sell2Wales at

Under the terms of this contract the successful supplier(s) will be required to deliver community benefits in support of the authority’s economic and social objectives. Accordingly, contract performance conditions may relate in particular to social and environmental considerations. The community benefits included in this contract are:

Community benefits will be required and included as non core, further information is included in the procurement documents.

(WA Ref:103395)

The buyer considers that this contract is suitable for consortia.


VI.4)Procedures for review

VI.4.1)Review body

Official name: High Court
Postal address: Royal Courts of Justice, The Strand
Town: London
Postal code: WC2A 2LL
Country: United Kingdom
Telephone: +44 2079477501
VI.4.2)Body responsible for mediation procedures
VI.4.3)Review procedure
VI.4.4)Service from which information about the review procedure may be obtained

VI.5)Date of dispatch of this notice: