Questions and Answers
Enterprise Service Management ServiceNow Implementation and Supplemental Services RFP
Document #: 0A1253
Per 1.7 Historical Work and enhancement Perspective:
Under tool integrations, can it be shared what the barcode and Peoplesoft integrations are using (Rest, SOAP), and are they uni or bi directional?
Answer: Peoplesoft integration is achieved via uni-directional Rest integration as well as a bi-directional interface using FTP. There is no integration with barcoding software used by individual agencies. There is a 3rd party application built in ServiceNow that manages barcoding data.
Per 1.6 Current Team Organization:
Documentation SME & Test/Release Team - Those are shown as dedicated areas that flow into the Test Lead.
Is/could it be possible for some of those functions to be shared across/with the Development team members as well?
Answer: That is a staffing plan decision that should be described in the proposal. You decide and show us how you would best support the organization.
2.2 Service Transition Management -
It says the Contractor will: “Coordinate with the State and Contractor network provider to schedule the installation of any required secure connectivity into Contractor Service Delivery Location(s) if the Contractor is delivering services to the State remotely” And that the State will support the establishment of secure network connections.
Please confirm that the Contractor would only be responsible for the recommendation and scheduling of any necessary VPN/software/etc., and the State (or agency) would be responsible for the actual installation.
Answer: The Contractor would only be responsible for the recommendation and scheduling of any necessary VPN/software/etc., and the State (or agency) would be responsible for the actual installation
Per 2.7 Supplemental Service Design-Build Services / ALL - Reports & Databases:
Is/would there be any expectation from the ‘contractor’ to provide support or additional designs outside of ServiceNow Reporting/MySQL to third-party applications from the other supported agencies (e.g. Business Objects, Informatica, Oracle, MS SQL, etc.)?
Answer: For Fixed bid activities there should be no addition support. For Project or IDA work, additional work needed outside of the ServiceNow application should be mutually agreed upon for each individual project or IDA.
Per 2.7 Supplemental Service Design-Build Services -
Compile and maintain solution incident lists:
Can this list be compiled within the ServiceNow platform (e.g. in Knowledge, or as a report)? Or outside the system to be able to be shared with the supported organizations?
Answer: Yes, will all be maintained on ServiceNow in the Knowledge Base.
Per Section 3.2 Commencement of Services/Contractor Compensation with the task of "Conduct production pilot(s) (including “day in the life” simulations) and fine tune solution as mutually agreed with the State as appropriate"
Can ‘day in the life’ simulations be considered “Stories” and gathered as such during requirements/meetings?
Per Section 3.13 of Supp 1
For the actual code migration into the production environment, will this be handled in tandem by both the State and Contractor, Contractor only, or State only?
Answer: In Tandem, by both the State and the Contractor.
Per page the Illustrative Team Org chart in Supplement 1, it shows that the UAT Lead is a State employee. In reviewing, Section 4.6.5 of Supp 1, it lists specific tasks for a UAT Lead to be provided from the offeror as well.
Does the State expect the offeror to provide a UAT Lead as a part of the contract or will they still be a part of the State organization?
Answer: The State maintains a UAT Lead. The Contractor will need a person to act as Test Lead (overall testing coordinator).
Question: Is the State wanting Offerors to include the entire RFP with their response (i.e, Part One, Two, Three, Four) or just the sections/attachments that require a response?
Answer: Offerors must include the sections that require a response as defined in Attachment Three: Requirements for Proposals.
Per 6.3 Attachment Three: Requirements of Proposal:
If Offerors must use the State's RFP word document for their submission, are they allowed to use page breaks in the State’s RFP to separate sections and include tab sheets, as requested?
Answer: Yes, the offeror can use page breaks.
Per the 1st Page of RFP: The State notes "Please verify that you have a complete copy"
Do you expect a formal verification back from the Offeror? If so, what verification would you require?
Answer: The State does not expect a formal verification back from the offeror.
Question: May offerors include in their proposal the use of offshore personnel? We understand that per the Prohibition of the Expenditure of Public Funds for Offshore Services, that no State data is to be sent, taken, accessed, tested, maintained, backed-up, stored, or made available remotely outside the U.S. However, this clause also references a duly signed waiver that may be attained from the State to perform services outside the United States. May this waiver be applied to this opportunity and any potentially awarded Agreement? Our organization has an offshore team based in the Philippines, which would permit us to present a best value proposal to the State. May we include their services in our proposal response?
Answer: The State cannot evaluate how an offer wants to submit its proposed solution through the inquiry process.
Question: In light of the holiday, and the scale of the RFP, would the State consider pushing the due date out 1 week to ensure higher quality proposals?
Answer: The State will be issuing an Amendment to extend the bid opening date to December 13, 2019.
Question: Can the State please confirm the Key staff consist of: 1) the Supplemental Services Manager/Project Manager Equivalent, 2) ServiceNow IT Architect, 3) ServiceNow Tech Lead, and the 4) ServiceNow Test Lead (S1, p81). We are confused by the different key staff identified on the org chart (S1,p12), and the "Key Personnel" identified as including a much larger group on S1, p83.
Answer: The key staff in Section 6.3 are mandatory. The Org Chart located in Supplement 1 Section 1.6, represents only the current vendor organizational structure. The offeror must determine how it plans to best staff their solution.
Question: Can we assume that the Contractor Account Representative (S1, p83) and the Contractors Implementation Manager (RFP, p54) are the same role? If not, can the State please explain the difference in the roles?
Answer: These two roles should be considered one and the same.
Question: Can we assume that the IT Architect (S1, p82) and the Application Architect (S1, p84) are the same role?
Answer: Yes, it is noted that the IT Architect and the Application Architect are the same role. This is noted in Supplement 1, Section 6.3
Supp 18 Re: bullet “An inventory of implemented modules, features, functions and configuration items”
Can you clarify the level of detail needed as it relates to “features” and “functions”? Also, is there a specific format envisioned for this deliverable?
Answer: The State is looking for the Contractor to propose how it will meet this deliverable. The specifics of the deliverable will be worked out with the Contractor post-award.
Supp 71 Re: use of Workfront for Project Management
Is there any integration between WorkFront and ServiceNow?
Answer: There is no integration between WorkFront and ServiceNow. A Workfront template is provided weekly for each ServiceNow project.
Supp 63 Re: Compatibility Guarantee
What controls are in place to ensure work done is accurately attributed to correct development team – State vs. Contractor
Answer: All work is assigned and documented within ServiceNow application to ensure the correct team is given credit for the work completed.
Supp 37 Re:” their proposed annual cost for Minor Change and Enhancement hours, an initial pool of four thousand (4000) annual hours to be used in conjunction with the Contractor’s Rate Card and represent an initial minimal monthly staffing level of two full-time equivalents”
How was the allotment of hours/FTE count determined?
Answer: It is a general assumption based on the backlog of current work.
Supp 35 Re: phrase “If required, support multiple release levels of ServiceNow™ elements for in-scope Services,”
Can you provide business examples where the State has had to run multiple release within their environment?
Answer: There is always only one version of ServiceNow (i.e. Madrid) in the production environment. There will be times when a newer or different version of ServiceNow is running in one of seven non-production environments.
Question: Supp 34 (and 37) Please clarify the delineation and definition of Major Enhancements, Minor Enhancements, Major Projects and Minor Projects?
Answer: Development requiring over 100 hours would be considered a Major upgrade or project. Development requiring less than 100 hours would be an Enhancement. Currently we do not delineate between major and minor projects. As outlined in 4.5, vendor would go through an Agency Requirements Gathering and Estimating Process to determine scope and sizing of a project.
Supp 31 Re: “In 30 calendar days of the Project Start Date, the State and Contractor will meet to review effectiveness of the Run Book and its components and to make additional, deletions, or updates.”
Please clarify what “Project Start Date” refers to?
Answer: These apply to ServiceNow released items that are implemented within the state of Ohio’s instance of ServiceNow.
Supp 26 Re: “Notwithstanding the aforementioned Service Level Agreement considerations, the Contractor will be responsible for any production system update, system release, upgrade or enhancement under the SLAs in full effect as contained in this Supplement no longer than three(3) months following the introduction of the production system update, system release, upgrade or enhancement to Production or live commercial use.”
Please clarify what this means?
Answer: These apply to ServiceNow released items that are implemented within the state of Ohio’s instance of ServiceNow.
Supp 25 Re: phrase “This will be done in partnership with the Supplemental Services assigned onsite leader”
Which roles are expected and/or required to be onsite?
Answer: Key Personnel must be located onsite at the State of Ohio Computer Center (SOCC). We prefer face to face interactions with our contractors. Your staffing plan should be specific as to how you would staff(on-site/off-site).
Supp 25 Re: Disaster Recovery ServiceNow is a cloud hosted SaaS that provided full DR services
What DR expectations does that State have for the Supplemental Services provider?
Answer: Currently, DR expectations involve relocations of resources from State of Ohio Computer Center(SOCC) and off-site space provided by the State of Ohio or the vendor. This may also involve establishing connectivity with servers, networks, internet, or other applications.
Question: Supp 23 Re: phrase “migration of environments” page 38 defines the type of environments but how many instances of ServiceNow are utilized by the State?
Answer: There is one instance of ServiceNow with one production environment and seven non-production environments.
Supp 22 Re: Automated Testing Framework
Does the State have any level of experience with this?
Supp 22 (also 24) Re: Organizational Change Management
• What expertise and resources within the State that would be available to leverage into this project?
• Who is accountable for the organizational change and communication?
-The State has extensive Change Management experience. Communication and Change management for each monthly release will be jointly discussed with the vendor to determine approach, schedule, and responsibility.
-To be defined monthly.
Supp 21 Re: “operating and maintaining ServiceNow environments required to complete and implement each supported computing platform in support of the in-scope applications as part of delivery of the overall Supplemental Service.”
Can you provide the technical architecture documentation (showing all components of the application) for the 7 custom apps?
Answer: An example of an architectural Design has already been provided.
Supp 20 Re: phrase “The Contractor will develop and build operational, technical and functional designs for each service domain of the ServiceNow environment.”
• Can you provide a list of the defined “service domains”?
• Also, can you provide the build design documentation for the existing environment?
-There is one instance of ServiceNow with some separation by agency. There are seven non-production environments.
-Unable to provide the build design documentation for the existing environment.
Supp 19 Re the Transition
Can you share detail on what specific interfaces and/or other component of the current system are owned/managed/ maintained by the current provider and, as such, will need to be replace by the new provider?
Answer: Interfaces and other components are not owned by the contractor. These items are owned and maintained by State of Ohio.
Supp 19 Re the “solution blueprint”
Can the State of Ohio provide an example of one?
Answer: The ‘Solution Blueprint’ or equivalent ‘Architectural design’ would only be needed for new development identified as part of transition. None have been identified to be part of transition at this time. The offeror is expected to detail it’s staffing plan, processes, and procedures it will bring to the State of Ohio ServiceNow Supplemental Services.
Re: the 7 Custom Apps listed
How complete is the application maintenance / operations documentation? Can these docs be provided?
Answer: There are architectural documents for each of 7 apps. Example has been posted on the Procurement Website.
Supp 18 Regarding the Transition process and statements around “No functionality disabled until new service is demonstrated…”
Does the State have any preferred approaches? Phases by agency? “Big bang”? Other?
Answer: From a transition perspective, it should be Big Bang or other as agreed. ServiceNow downtime is not planned or expected. the transition from one contractor to another contractor is expected to be seamless to our customers and end users.
Supp 17 Re: bullet “A process by which the State may require the Contractor to reschedule all or any part of the Transition if the State determines that such Transition, or any part of such Transition, poses a risk or hazard to the State’s business interests and allowing the State to require the Contractor to reschedule all or any part of the Transition for any other reason and” Rescheduling of the Transition effort because it poses a “risk or hazard to the State’s business” is clear.
Can you clarify what may be included when rescheduling occurs for “any other reason”?
Answer: Enterprise-wide outage or issue, natural or man-made disaster, governor order, or other unknown event.
Supp 16 Re: bullet “Implement processes and controls as to not otherwise disrupt the State business operations, including the interfaces between the State and various 3rd parties and” for current 10 interfaces in place.
Are they owned/managed/ maintained by the State of Ohio or does the incumbent provider own/manage/maintain them?
Answer: The current ten interfaces are owned and maintained by the State of Ohio and not the contractor.
Supp 15 Re: project titled “Back to Basics Initiative”
Can you confirm if this a project to revert the ServiceNow Platform back to the baseline, “out of the box” configuration?
Answer: Yes, the state has a ‘Back to Baseline’ project with the objective of returning to ‘out of the box’ configuration.
Supp 14 Re: bullet “ServiceNow Service Management”
Is this referring to Customer Service Management or HR Service Management?
Answer: It is referring to Customer Service Management only.
Supp 14 Re: bullet “Portal (CMS)
Please confirm that the current portal is built using ServiceNow CMS and not the more recently released Service Portal product? Is there any consideration to migrate to most current product?
Answer: The State of Ohio uses the Angular, newest released ServiceNow Portal product.
Supp 13 Incidents and Request volume have increased year over year.
• Can you confirm that these increases are due to expanded usage of the Platform?
• Also, if analysis was done on a single Agency, with a relatively flat user base, has there been any reduction in Incidents as a result of effective Problem Management, proactive monitoring, etc)?
• As it relates to Requests, to what degree has fulfillment been automated?
-Confirmed, this is due to the expanded usage of the application.
-We have not collected related data or completed any analysis.
-Fulfillment been automated to a small degree.
Supp 12 Re: the org chart shown
Can you share how many FTEs are staffed within the “Development Team” and “Test and Release Team”?
Answer: The current vendor supports 3 Developers, 6 Testers depending on monthly release needs (i.e. major release15). Number of testers can increase by as many as 8 when testing a major release or a ServiceNow upgrade or for other testing need.
Re: statement “20 – 30 Tier Three ServiceNow corporate help desk Tickets are created monthly”
• What is the nature of these tickets?
• What insight can you share about why there were so many escalations to L3?
• Do all tickets that go to ServiceNow L3 pass through State resources or can the Supplemental Service Provider escalate to ServiceNow as well?
Both the State of Ohio and contractor escalate to L3 as needed.
Ticket types and volume fluctuate depending on volume and monthly releases.
See attached ServiceNow monthly HI case type Report.
Question: Would DAS please provide ticket extract of all work related to ServiceNow for the last 6 months? It would be helpful to understand the actual “ticket driven” work that is being performed by all the teams involved.
Answer: The State of Ohio is providing raw data of incidents with categories under "Associated PDF Documents" on the Procurement Website. Report provided with six months of ‘ticket driven’ work labeled by category only. Additional detail (stories, testing, notes) cannot be reasonably accommodated.
Supp 29 Re: “Assist with implementing the State defined IT control requirements including updating security matrix spreadsheets and implementing supported server and systems software configurations for access control.”
Can the security matrix spreadsheet be provided?
Answer: The State is unable to provide the Security matrix spreadsheet. This is State of Ohio sensitive information. The Security Matrix will be provided post-award.
Supp 10 For the Roles indicated in the table
Can you confirm if there is a defined, standard set of role-based access permission setting / access controls or if user permissions are defined and maintained on a case by case?
Answer: Yes, the State of Ohio uses a standard set of role-based access permission settings/access controls.
Supp 8 Re: “ITIL Foundations v3 certified”
Please confirm ITIL Foundations v4 is acceptable.
Answer: Yes, ITIL v4 is acceptable.
Question: Can an RFP be submitted using multiple contractors?
Answer: The Contract will be awarded to one (1) offeror that will be bound by the Contract requirements and terms and conditions. The offeror can determine the number of subcontractors with which it wants to work.
Question: Is it possible to view the RFPs that were issued 5 years ago? Are we able to contact a FOI representative for the state of Ohio?
Answer: Public records requests can be sent to Lizabeth.Corrigan@das.ohio.gov.
Question: Supp 8 Re: “(known as IDAs)” please confirm what this acronym stands for.
Answer: Page 26, Section 2.6 of the Request for Proposal defines the Interval Deliverable Agreement (IDA).
Re: The Mandatory Requirement of “must have at least two (2) completed or current projects providing Support services (or Managed Services) with at least one (1) public entity of similar size and scope within the past 60 months.”
Can the Support / or Managed Services can be in any IT domain or must they be for ServiceNow?
Answer: Support or Managed Services can be in any IT domain.
For the prerequisite items the RFP listed (which I have pasted below), will the State of Ohio accept commercial projects of similar size or greater, combined with smaller public entity projects, in lieu of a public entity of this size?
The offeror must have at least two (2) completed or current projects providing Support services (or Managed Services) with at least one (1) public entity of similar size and scope within the past 60 months.
The offeror must have successfully completed at least two (2) projects providing ServiceNow implementation with at least one (1) public entity of similar size and scope as outlined in the Supplement 1 requirements.
Answer: The State will NOT accept commercial projects of similar size or greater, combined with smaller public entity projects, in lieu of a public entity of this size.
Question: Is state willing to relax mandatory reference requirement of 1 public sector reference, to allow more vendors to participate?
Answer: The State will not be changing the mandatory requirements.
Question: What are the specific expectations that the State would like to see from an offeror as inline responses to Supplement 1 sections? Are we just affirming/declining that we will support and adhere to the States suggestions/plans?
Each Proposal must include a response to every request for information in this Supplement 1 whether the request requires a simple "yes" or "no" or requires a detailed explanation. When a detailed response is required, simply repeating the RFP's requirement and agreeing to comply may be an unacceptable response and may cause the Proposal to be rejected.
Offerors must provide enough information for the evaluation team to understand how offerors will complete the tasks successfully and be able to score them accordingly.
Question: Is it possible to submit a bid for a portion of the scope for this project, or will it be necessary to bid on the full scope posted in the RFP.
Answer: Offerors must bid on the full scope of work listed in the RFP.
Question: In the mandatories, please confirm that for the second and third requirements, when the term “projects” is used, there can be multiple “projects” in an “engagement”? Or does “project” here refer to a long-term “engagement” with a single client?
Answer: Project would be an award of work that meets the mandatory requirement. The offeror must determine how it will reflect meeting the mandatory requirements in its response.
Question: In section 3.7, the language says "The State will not accept multiple proposals from a single offeror or any alternate solutions or options to the requirements of this RFP." Based on other responses, we assume that this language applies to the prime vendor. If this is true, we assume that a Vendor may serve as a Prime on one proposal, and be included as a sub in another. Can you confirm, please?
Answer: Yes, a vendor can submit a response as an offeror and also be proposed as a subcontractor through an offeror.
Question: For the second and third mandatories, does “the offeror” have to have been the prime in the other engagements for the qualification to count or can they have been a sub-contractor to another firm?
Answer: The offeror could have been a prime contractor or subcontractor that completed the projects.
Question: Does “the offeror” in the mandatory requirements mean the Prime or the Team that the Prime has assembled?
Answer: "Offeror" is the company that is submitting a response to the Request for Proposal.
Question: Does the vendor must have a State Term Schedule to be able to bid for this RFP?
Answer: No, an offeror does not have to have a valid State Term Schedule in order to submit a response to this RFP.
Question: Is it possible to get the attendee list from the meeting?
Answer: A list of attendees will be posted to the Procurement website after the bidder's conference.
Question: Will you be providing dial in access for the pre-proposal conference on November 8, 2019?
Answer: As stated in a previous inquiry and on the Procurement website, vendors can call into the conference at 1-614-466-7177, conference ID 5264644#.
Question: Is it acceptable for vendor to partner with an MBE/EDGE Certified Service Provider?
Answer: The certified ServiceNow Service Partner of Premier, Specialist or Elite Status must be the offeror; however, offerors are encouraged to subcontract work to MBE/EDGE vendors.
Question: Is it mandatory for vendors to be MBE/EDGE certified to qualify and to be eligible to participate in the full cycle of the RFP?
Answer: No, it is not mandatory for vendors to be MBE/EDGE certified to qualify and to be eligible to participate in the full cycle of the RFP.
Question: We, with our partner, meet certified ServiceNow Service Partner requirements with Elite Status. We exceed the mandatory requirements of similar size and scope as outlined in Supplement 1. We have completed more than 2 projects providing ServiceNow implementation and Support services within the past 60 months. We have successfully completed these referenceable projects for fortune 500 companies but not for a public entity. Can our proposal still be acceptable to proceed to the Scored Criteria level?
Answer: The State cannot evaluate a Mandatory Requirement through the inquiry process.
Question: For the Pre-Proposal Conference, is there a hard-stop time or will it continue until all questions are answered?
Answer: The intention is to wrap up the conference by noon.
Question: For the mandatory requirements, The offeror must have at least two (2) completed or current projects providing Support services (or Managed Services) with at least one (1) public entity of similar size and scope within the past 60 months. Who do you consider as public entity - State & Federal only or publicly traded companies also?
Answer: Public entity is defined as federal, state or local government.
Question: Will there be a conference bridge for the bidders conference?
Answer: Vendors can call into the conference at 1-614-466-7177, conference ID 5264644#.
Question: Is it possible to ask a confidential question around a third-party partnership?
Answer: No, all questions regarding this Request for Proposal must be posted for all potential offerors to view.
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