The University of Edinburgh intends to procure a software solution to provide a high-quality, scalable, pan-university digital online community platform that enables students and alumni to interact to meet mutual needs, in particular in terms of careers inspiration, mentoring and general life coaching, providing an enhanced offer and experience to students and alumni.

A new platform will be capable of accommodating user groups to include students, alumni, staff, prospective students, and friends of the university. It will tailor experience and access to services depending on the user group.

The solution should offer a range of functionality, providing added value and impetus for repeat use.

This must include:

  • A comprehensive, searchable directory of user profiles offering the ability for users to connect with each other.
  • Search function by keyword and or based on a variety of criteria (e.g. degree, occupation, location).
  • The ability to manage mentoring for specific groups (e.g. programmes offering tailored, structured, individual support).
  • The ability to host and manage open and closed groups and control services (communication, resources etc.) at different levels for groups.
  • Bulk communication tools to support administration, inform users and stimulate use.
  • The ability to host online resources such as careers help, webinars, CPD resources.

It may include other bespoke features supporting the delivery of a range of voluntary activities or services.



The primary focus of this project - from the perspective of IS Applications - is to support  the procurement of a suitable SAP ( Student & Alumni Platform) by our business partners for the University of Edinburgh.

  • The procurement will follow an open tender approach using PCS/PCS-T (Public Contracts Scotland-Tender e-Sourcing service).
  • The requirements gathering stage will consult with all the main stakeholders to ensure that all our business requirements are included.
  • The procurement phase will award the contract to the tender that offers the best overall value. This means that tenders will be scored and judged on a combination of the level and type of service and support offered, as well as financial cost.
  • The procurement phase must define the high level installation plan, including plans for implementation.  This must be agreed with the successful supplier.
  • The procurement must also include plans for ongoing support (e.g. a Service Level Agreement) and training as required.


Objectives and Deliverables

No. Description MoSCoW Link to current / approved version of deliverable  
O1 Decide on the most appropriate procurement strategy for this project Must have  N/A  
D1 A procurement strategy that will define the procurement journey and provide a suitable outline for the procurement Must have Sharepoint site  
O2 Identifying all relevant stakeholders and consulting them about their business requirements. Must have  N/A  
D2 A complete list of all relevant stakeholders to be consulted about their requirements Must have Sharepoint site  
O3 Collate all appropriate requirements into a correctly formatted set of documents Must have  N/A  
D3 A requirements definition that entabulates all appropriate functional and non-functional requirements for the new service       Must have Sharepoint site  


Prepare and issue an invitation to tender (ITT) Must have  N/A  
D4 An Invitation To Tender underpinned by the requirements definition and the procurement strategy listed above Must have Available from Procurement Services  
O5 Evaluate the ITT responses that meet the acceptance criteria for consideration Must have  N/A  
D5 A summary report on the ITTs that have been scored and judged according to the procurement strategy Must have Available from Procurement Services  
D6 A recommendation on which solution offers the best value for the University and each of the stakeholder groups Must have Available from Procurement Services  
O6 Select/appoint the supplier who best meets our scoring criteria Must have  N/A  
D7 A contract award to the successful supplier Must have Sharepoint site  
O7 Conduct contractual negotiations that permit delivery of the new service Must have  N/A  
D8 Agreement on arrangements for delivery of chosen solution Must have See SaaS Agreement (Sharepoint)  
D9 Implementation plans for deploying the new service for the identified user community Must have Project website  
D10 All relevant support and maintenance arrangements Must have See SaaS Agreement (Sharepoint)  


Out of Scope

This project will not include the implementation of the chosen solution. This will be covered by a follow-on project that will be initiated in September 2017 (or as soon as the contract negotiation is complete).



The benefits are that students and alumni will be able to be connected through a community. Among other benefits this will:

  • Support the strategic plan target of increasing income through better engagement with alumni
  • Enable alumni to give a valued contribution of supporting students through discussion and advice
  • Enable students to be connected with alumni who have undertaken a similar course, to be able to ask them questions and understand the opportunities available to them, thus increasing the employability of students and increasing student satisfaction.


Success Criteria

For the procurement element of this project these are:

  • Engaged stakeholder groups that have contributed to the production of the requirements definition and ITT.
  • An ITT approved by the Project Team, related stakeholders and Procurement.
  • A new SAP product procured after undertaking a thorough evaluation period.
  • The agreement and delivery of a related support contract and maintenance agreement with the chosen supplier.
  • Contract awarded to successful supplier.
  • Implementation plans for the selected product for the University of Edinburgh.

Project Milestones

Target Datesort descending Previous Date Title Stage Complete  
02-Jun-2017 No date available Planning Sign-Off Plan No


08-Jun-2017 No date available Publish Invitation to Tender Analyse No


10-Jul-2017 No date available Closing date for return of tenders Procure No


18-Aug-2017 No date available Completion of evaluations Procure No


06-Sep-2017 No date available Award Decision Procure No


03-Oct-2017 No date available Contract Negotiations completed - Award made Procure No


17-Oct-2017 No date available Closure report completed Close No


Project Info

Student Alumni Platform Procurement (USG005)
USG Portfolio Projects (OTHUSG)
Management Office
Project Manager
David Watters
Project Sponsor
Grant Spence
Current Stage
Start Date
Planning Date
Delivery Date
Close Date
Programme Priority
Overall Priority