Check out our COVID-19 dedicated page for tenders related to medical equipment needs.
United Kingdom-London: Evaluation consultancy services
Prior information notice
This notice is for prior information only
Section I: Contracting authority
Section II: Object
Provision of Design and Development Services for The Test of Competence
This is a prior information notice for the forthcoming service contract for a partner who will work with us to design and develop a modular Test of Competence for prospective nursing associates who trained outside of England and who wish to practise in England as a registered nursing associate. This Test of Competence will be designed in such a way so that it is capable of future development to provide a further modular Test of Competence for nurses and midwives who trained outside of the United Kingdom and who wish to practise in the United Kingdom. Subject to the successful design and development of the Test of Competence for nursing associates, the design partner will go on to design and develop the new Test of Competence for nurses and midwives. Further details can be found under Section II.2.4 (Description of the procurement) of this notice.
From January 2019 the NMC will register nursing associates. Details on this new profession can be found on our website here: https://www.nmc.org.uk/search/?q=nursing+associates
We will therefore require a new Test of Competence for nursing associates who trained outside England to assess their ability to practise safely and effectively against the nursing associate standards of proficiency. In May 2018 we launched our new UK pre-registration nursing standards and we require a new Test of Competence to reflect these standards. The Test of Competence for midwives will need to reflect our new UK midwifery standards when these are launched in the near future. The existing Test of Competence comprises 2 parts, the Computer Based Test (CBT) consisting of a number of multiple choice questions and a practical objective clinical examination (OSCE). Together these components seek to provide a holistic assessment of a candidate’s ability to practise safely and effectively in the UK. Currently, candidates take the CBT in a number of countries across the world through an online platform and then sit the OSCE in the UK at one of our approved test centres. We envisage that the new Test of Competence may include these components or similar and our partner will be required to design and develop the CBT bank of questions and the OSCE content. We are looking to appoint a partner to work with us to design and develop the Test of Competence for nursing associates and to then go on to design and develop a new Test of Competence for nurses and midwives. It is also envisaged that the new Test of Competence should be designed and developed in such a way so as to enable testing of applicants from the EU who have shortfalls in their practice or qualification and nurses returning to practice after a period of absence. Our design and development partner will be required to work closely and collaboratively with our CBT and OSCE delivery partners to implement robust Tests of Competence. It is envisaged that this appointment will be for a period of three years (with options to extend by up to 12 months in 2 annual increments) and will involve work in the following areas:
a) Design and development of a new modular Test of Competence that can also be used to test applicants from the EU who have shortfalls in their practice or qualification and nurses returning to practice after a period of absence;
b) May involve the design and development of a bank of questions for the new CBT (or equivalent); c) May involve the design and development of the content for the new OSCEs (or equivalent). Further details can be found in the market engagement questionnaire. The NMC has issued this Prior Information Notice (PIN) in order to conduct a market engagement exercise ahead of a forthcoming tender for the provision of design and development services of the Test of Competence. Before tendering a new contract for these services the NMC wishes to better understand the market and variety of options available which will help inform the eventual procurement exercise. Providers interested in partaking in this market engagement exercise are requested to express an interest in this PIN via the In-tend e-Sourcing portal before midday on 15.6.2018. Upon receipt the NMC will issue a short market engagement questionnaire to all interested parties which needs to be completed and returned via the In-tend portal by midday 22.6.2018 to allow us to gather feedback from the market and assist in developing the procurement strategy.
Please note no tender documents have been issued at this stage the functional requirements capability specification will be published in the future Invitation to Tender documents with the OJEU Contract Notice. The procurement will use the In-tend e-Sourcing portal https://www.in-tendhost.co.uk/nmc
Section IV: Procedure
Section VI: Complementary information
The NMC reserves the right to not progress to a full potential procurement exercise as a result of this PIN until they are fully ready to do so which will be communicated to the marketplace by the issuing of the formal OJEU Contract Notice which at this stage is estimated to be published in July. For more information about this opportunity, please visit the In-tend e-Sourcing portal at: The contract value stated in this PIN is the current best estimate over a maximum 5 year contract. This may be revised if required prior to the issue of the OJEU Contract Notice. To respond to this opportunity, please click here: https://www.in-tendhost.co.uk/nmc