Department of Education
The Department for Education had a number of colleagues using a US-based survey platform but needed a UK-based alternative which meets the requirements of the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) introduced in 2018. SmartSurvey stores data in the UK, is GDPR compliant and holds ISO27001 and Cyber Essentials Plus certification.
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What the company does:
SmartSurvey is a Software as a Service (SaaS) platform that helps individuals, charities, businesses and government organisations by simplifying the collection of data through the power of the web. It is used in consultations, customer satisfaction, employee feedback, assessments, academic research, training evaluation, and much more. SmartSurvey offers a dedicated personal service to its customers and, importantly, stores data in the UK.
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In relation to the contract awarded, how did you find the procurement process?
We found the procurement process very straightforward. Crown Commercial Service has taken feedback from suppliers like us, who only have small teams, to make the process simple. Unlike big organisations, we don’t have dedicated staff to manage procurement processes, so we had to learn from scratch. But the G-Cloud framework gave us a way to sell our services to the Department for Education from a single, central website. We started off on G-Cloud 5, so we’ve seen how it has evolved over the years and can say that G-Cloud 9, which we used here, was by far the simplest framework to use.
What worked well and what could have been done better?
The simplicity of going through the call-off contract which we received from the client worked really well, as did having everything we needed to know laid out clearly in front of us. It also helped that the client had previous experience dealing with G-Cloud orders. The process was much easier than we expected it to be.
What benefit does your company receive from supplying to the public sector?
As a small UK company, the biggest benefit of supplying to the public sector is that it gives us the opportunity to help improve our country. We feel as though we are contributing to making our public services more efficient through the services we provide.
The experience we’ve gained by learning new things along the way has paid dividends. For example, we now know a lot more about the structure within central and local government, which helps us plan out our marketing efforts. Working with the public sector has also given us a lot of confidence to sell to the private sector. We now have many public sector customers and this really gives us an edge and makes us stand out from the crowd. Many private companies feel more assured to work with us as a result of successfully delivering projects to government departments.
What was/is/will be the outcome of the contract for the client?
The Department for Education can now feel confident they used a UK-based, secure and compliant tool to create online surveys and forms.
Furthermore, the contract has allowed the Department to consolidate its spend on such online tools by purchasing an Enterprise account, where they can add more licences as and when they wish, at a fixed price.
How would you like to work with the public sector in the future?
In the same way we do now. It works well, so there’s no need to change anything now we are on G-Cloud 10. G-Cloud has already proved to be successful for us, even though it only recently went live. We already have over £100k worth of business due to go through G-Cloud 10 in the coming weeks.