Q&A - Open Call for Tenders for the Supply and Implementation of a Learning Management System
Q: La risposta alla gara deve essere redatta necessariamente in inglese o va bene anche la lingua italiana?
A: Come indicato nell’articolo 8.1 del Capitolato, le offerte e tutti i loro allegati devono essere presentati in inglese.
Q: Does the answer to the competition necessarily have to be written in English or is Italian acceptable as well? A: As stated in article 8.1 of the Special Tender Specifications, the offers and all attached documentation, including annexes, shall be submitted in English.
Q: Nel caso di aggiudicazione, il progetto deve essere gestito in inglese o in italiano? Nel primo caso occorre necessariamente prevedere almeno un project manager madrelingua inglese?
A: Il project manager non dev’essere necessariamente di madrelingua inglese, però lei/lui dev’essere in grado di gestire il progetto in modo abile e professionale nella lingua inglese, sia scritta che parlata.
Q: In case the tender is awarded, shall the project be managed in English or Italian? In the first case, is it necessary to provide an English mother-tongue project manager?
A: The project manager does not have to be an English mother tongue speaker; however, she/he shall be able to proficiently and professionally manage the project in the English language (both written and spoken).
Q: Si legge che il contratto ha durata di un anno rinnovabile per 6 anni. Quindi di fatto stiamo parlando di una gara di soli circa €30.000 e non €230.000. Ma per quali motivi il contratto potrebbe NON essere rinnovato?
A: Il valore massimo del contratto è stimato in €230.000. Se per qualsiasi motivo, in seguito all’accurata valutazione e selezione del sistema, gli utilizzatori si trovassero estremamente insoddisfatti della soluzione attuata, ci riserviamo il diritto di non rinnovare il contratto annuale nel corso dei 7 anni di durata dell’intero contratto. Dato l’elevato costo e l’impegno richiesti dal cambiamento di un LMS, ci vorrebbero delle motivazioni gravi per decidere la risoluzione anticipata del contratto.
Q: We read that the contract is for one year, renewable for 6 years. Are we therefore talking about a tender of only around €30,000 and not €230,000? For what reason could the contract not be renewed?
A: The maximum value of the contract is estimated at €230,000. If for whatever reason, after the careful selection and evaluation of the system, the user population should be extremely dissatisfied with the solution implemented, we reserve the right to not renew the yearly contract within the 7 year duration of the entire contract. Given the high cost and effort incurred when changing an LMS, there will have to be compelling arguments for such a premature discontinuation of the contract.
Q: In the knock-out section if we answer "no" to any of the requirements (R) are we definitely disqualified?
A: If you’d need to answer with a ‘no’ this would mean disqualification indeed. Feel free to ask for clarification in case a requirement appears not to include certain technical aspects.
Q: It is required to have SOAP and REST APIs however usually one or the other is required.
A: [Answer related to T.5.1.5 and T.5.1.6] This observation is true. Depending on the application either the SOAP OR RESTFULL protocol is sufficient to answer compliant to T.5.1.5 and T.5.1.6 PROVIDED that the system offered is compliant to the requirements related to MS Azure Identity management (T.4.4.2, T.4.4.3); OSIRIS student information system (T.5.1.7) AND Turnitin anti plagiarism (T.5.1.8).
T.4.4.2: Authentication via Windows Azure Active Directory must be available.Authentication assigns different levels of permissions based on and mapped to our Active Directory groups.Different levels of AD groups may exist and may overlap. A user is granted the ‘sum’ of all authorisations based on group membership.
T.4.4.3: In order to assign permissions for students and course managers, the only authentication protocols to be used are those the MS Azure Active Directory platform provides:
For role-based authorisation Microsoft Graph shall be used.
T.5.1.5: The system is capable of delivering and using SOAP (version 1.1 or 1.2) web services. The web services provided are described in XSD & WSDL.
T.5.1.6: The system is able to deliver RESTfull web services.
T.5.1.7: The system is capable of integration with EUI’s Student Information System OSIRIS, preferably using the standard webservices available. The exchange shall comprise at least: receiving courses; course instances; teachers (including different roles); participants; and enrolments and teachers per course instance.
T.5.1.8: The system is able to integrate the antiplagiarism system which the EUI is currently using (Turnitin), so uploaded assignments (documents) are automatically scanned.
Q: Responsive design for mobile browsers is only required if the LMS does not have a good mobile app however this is not part of the criteria.
A: [Answer related to T.5.1.2] If the solution offers a mobile app instead of a web enabled interface, the app shall be responsive and available for the latest versions of Windows (7, 8, 10), Android (5, 6, 7, 8) and IOS (10, 11) in order to comply with this requirement.
F.1.2.1: All functionalities of the LMS are available on mobile devices (responsive design).
T.3.2.4: The Application User Interface follows the responsive design principles so that it can be adapted to the device (tablets, smartphones, desktop) that approaches the application.
T.5.1.2: The application must work correctly with the latest 2 versions of standard browsers: Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, and Apple Safari. "Standard" means that there are no adjustments to the setting of the browsers, e.g. cookie and privacy settings. This also applies to the mobile versions of these browsers.
Q: We cannot fully agree with some terms as laid out in the draft contract. Would the EUI be open to discuss these items? Or would you consider adding a paragraph to the tender which allows vendors to submit terms for discussion or negotiation upon award?
A: We would not want to exclude suitable vendors based on our terms and conditions, and invite you to send specific questions to ICTS.Tend[email protected] regarding terms or conditions to which you cannot agree (and perhaps why you cannot). We will try to accommodate such requests within the limits of our own regulations by replying via this Q&A.
Q: Is EUI willing to review Contractor’s Data Protection Addendum, which is fully compliant with GDPR, in lieu of the President’s Decision No. 40 of 27 August 2013 (EUI Data Protection Policy)? While Contractor understands the need to include a DPA, including the EUI Data Protection Policy is not feasible as it could change at any time without Contractor’s consent.
A: The EUI Data Protection Policy included in President’s Decision No. 40 of 27 August 2013 is not suitable to being replaced by any other data protection policy.
Q: Is EUI willing to provide general consent for Contractor’s use of third party service providers so long as the following is true: (1) EUI will be notified of any such third party service providers with access to personal data; (2) such third party service providers are contractually bound to materially similar provisions with respect to data privacy and security; and (3) any third party service provider’s access to personal data is permitted only on a need-to-know basis and solely to provision services to Contractor so Contractor can provide the LMS to EUI?
A: According to the EUI Public Procurement Regulation, the service requested is to be provided by the contractor. However, the tenderer may subcontract certain services (like hosting) to a specialised third party in accordance with Article II.7 – Subcontracting of Annex D – Draft service contract. In case of subcontracting, this has to be clearly indicated in the tender and the nature of the services to be subcontracted has to be clearly specified in the tender. The tenderer will remain responsible for the subcontracted services in accordance with the contract.
Q: The Special Tender Specifications do not include a licence grant or any use restrictions which would be required for EUI to obtain a licence to the service. Is EUI willing to include these provisions in the resulting contract so long as Contractor includes them in its response? For sake of clarity, Contractor understands that should there be any issue with the licence grant or use restrictions included in its response, the parties will use their best efforts to reach a mutual agreement upon award.
A: The primary scope of this tender is the “supply, implementation and hosting of an LMS”. This shall include licences, maintenance and support for the entire duration of the contract (as specified in Annex E – Economic offer form).In case the vendor does not by default offer the unrestricted use of the service offered (e.g. by offering various modules); the non-exclusive, non-transferable, worldwide licence grant shall at least include all functionality as required in the STS and as indicated by the Tenderer to be included in Annex H – Desired functionality sheet, which may reasonably be expected by the Contracting Authority to be available to fulfil these requirements.
Q: It is Contractor’s position that the Special Tender Specifications operate as a “wish list” for EUI and our response documents what we can offer with our products and services. Is EUI willing to amend the order of precedence to allow the Contractor’s response to govern in the event of a conflict?
A: The answer to question 7 is applicable to this question too. The order of precedence is NOT subject to negotiation.
Q: We would like to request that you provide (a) the scenarios for user testing, (b) presentation format, (c) expectations of the May testing phase, and (d) type of users (Faculty, Students, IT) as soon as possible.
A: (a) The scenarios for the user test are included in Annex I, including which type(s) of user will perform each scenario.(b) After a 30-minute presentation/introduction/instruction by the vendor, the test panel will independently perform the test scenarios and may ask for further support from the tenderer while doing so.(c) Our expectation of the user test is that the test panel will perform the test scenarios and will score each scenario using four characteristics of usability (article 7.5.3: works intuitively, is modern, is purposeful, works efficiently), based on their own perspective. An average overall grade is calculated which is converted to award points according to table 6 of the STS.(d) The types of users who will be testing are (article 7.5.4): coordinators (teaching staff); participants (researchers/fellows); support staff (administrative support); and system administrators (technical staff).
Q: If you are unable to provide the information requested in Question 11 before your Q&A deadline, and give suppliers sufficient time to review before your Q&A deadline, please consider extending the Q&A round to allow for further clarification once all the details have been provided.
A: In the period between the invites for the user test (last week in May) and the user test itself (third week in June), we will respond to further questions tenderers may have related to the user test, using this Q&A.
Q: There are terms and conditions that as such we cannot accept as the related business risk will be too high. Our legal and service departments have gone through the contractual information you provided and would need clarification on the following items:
Q14(a) 8.1.1(7) and 10.1: It is unusual in our industry to provide bid bonds and performance bonds for a contract of this size. Would you consider eliminating these requirements?
A: Including a bid bond and performance bond is a standard practice in public procurement, as it is a guarantee for the contracting authority that the services requested shall be duly performed. We do not want to eliminate this insurance.
Q14(b) 8.1.1(8): We are a company incorporated in England and we are not aware of any anti-Mafia provisions that would apply to us. We can provide a statement of self-certification to say that we do not engage in racketeering or other illegal activities. Would that suffice?
A: Yes that would suffice.
Q14(c) 11.2.3: Can you please explain what is meant by “the ‘entity’ of the penalty shall be established in relation to the severity of the breach”? Should it read “the amount of the penalty”?
A: ‘Entity’ refers to the ‘amount’ of the penalty indeed.
Q14(d) 11.2.4: The penalties in this section are in excess of what is customary in our industry. Could these please be reduced, and can some mitigating language please be added: e.g., “No penalties shall be applied (i) if Contractor was complying with industry standards and using reasonable diligence to perform its obligations; or (ii) for events beyond Contractor’s control.” Also, we would request that the penalties for agreed uptime be subject to the credits for that month, and not the additional penalty of €5,000 if the agreed uptime is not met at least ten months in each year.
A: In the light of European privacy legislation these amounts are not excessive. The mitigating circumstances referred to here are already covered by Article II.11 in Annex D – Draft Service Contract (Force Majeure).
Q14(e) 11.2.5: By “one year”, do you mean one calendar year? And is this in the event of two major penalties in 11.2.4 being triggered, and not just for credits that may be payable under the Service Level Agreement?
A: “One year” is to be read as “one calendar year”. This is in the event of more than one penalty in 11.2.4 being triggered.
Q14(f) 11.5: We understand you would like us to waive our own terms and conditions, yet you might find some of these terms advantageous, as they describe the way we provide our services. If we include them with our proposal, could we have the opportunity to discuss the extent to which some of our terms could be included in the resulting contract?
A: As specified in paragraph 11.5.1 of the Special Tender Specifications, the submission of a tender implies acceptance of the terms and conditions set out in the documents concerning the present open call for tender.
Q14(g): We would like to specify that our agreement to the documents set out in 11.5.2 would be subject to any exceptions or clarifications that we would include in our proposal response: is this acceptable?
A: See also answer to Question 7. Any exceptions and/or clarifications tenderers may raise regarding the tender documents shall be addressed to the contracting authority via the functional mailbox [email protected] The tender shall be drafted by the tenderers according to the replies provided by the EUI.
Annex D – Draft Service Contract
Q14(h) Annex II, and I.4.2: It is unusual in our industry to provide a performance bond or performance guarantee for a contract of this size. Would you consider eliminating this requirement?
A: See answer (a) of this question.
Q14(i): Order of precedence of contract documents on page 2: We believe that Annex II should prevail over Annex I, because our tender response states what we are able to do and what services we are able to provide. Could the order of priority of Annexes I and II please be switched?
A: The order of precedence is NOT subject to negotiation.
Q14(j): We would like to be able to discuss with you as to the possibility of including some of our terms in Annex II as a supplement to the contract terms; would this be possible?
A: See answer (f) of this question.
Q14(k) I.2.5: Can you please explain about having to provide services for an additional 6 months at the end of the contract? Would this be on a month-to-month basis? Or would we be paid in advance for the extension period?
A: This is to ensure continuity. The services provided during this period shall be paid by the EUI in accordance with ARTICLE II.15 - REPORTING AND PAYMENTS, since it is considered a normal provision of service.
Q14(l) I.3 and I.9: We provide preferential pricing if the University would consider a multi-year term, with no opportunity to terminate for convenience, or reduce the service or number of users, during this period. Would you consider a multi-year term in this case?
A: We prefer a yearly renewable contract for now. Perhaps in the future, a multi-year term may be agreed.
Q14(m): Could the requirement in I.9 to draw up all documents within 60 days be extended to 120 days?
A: We consider 60 days to be a standard and reasonable deadline.
Q14(n) I.10: It is customary in our industry to use our own monitoring tools for performance, since our users may experience service issues with local internet providers that are not caused by us, or even visible to us. With our own monitoring equipment, we can see what is occurring within our demarcation points, and this is what should be measured. Therefore, as drafted, this article is not equitable. In addition, we may need more than five days to respond to you, but we can certainly provide a timeline for a response during that period. Could this article please be modified to reflect these points?
A: In case of a service interruption (not caused by an internet service provider), we expect a response from our vendor within 5 days after a formal written notification. This response may be a preliminary evaluation (e.g. including your own kpi’s) with an expected timeline for a more detailed report indeed.
Q14(o) II.1.11: If there is a dispute or claim under this contract, we would expect that the dispute or claim would be settled in accordance with the dispute resolution clause in the contract. As such, can this section please be removed?
A: This article is part of our standard conditions included in any contract and therefore will not be removed.
Q14(p) II.3.3: The customary limitation of liability for a contractor in our industry is a limit that is equal to 12 months of fees paid. Can this section please be changed to reflect that? Three times the total contract value is excessive and is not in keeping with industry norms.
A: We accept this proposal and shall rephrase this article: “… to an amount not exceeding the total amount of the yearly contract”.
Q14(q): Can you please confirm that the agreed liability limit will be applicable to all claims, penalties and indemnities under the contract except that claims arising from gross negligence, wilful misconduct or for death should be unlimited?
A: As we do not know the yearly contract value we cannot confirm that this amount will be applicable to all claims, penalties and indemnities under the contract.
Q14(r) II.5: We note that this confidentiality section only protects the University’s information. Could this Article please be made mutual so that our software and trade secrets that we provide to you would also be protected?
A: II.5.1 and II.5.3 already explicitly include confidentiality for both parties, covering software and trade secrets.
Q14(s) II.7; II.7.2: We use vendors in the ordinary course of business for hosting infrastructure and other ancillary services. In keeping with what is allowed under GDPR, could you please provide us with a general authorisation to use such vendors, rather than having to request permission for each vendor?
A: As part of the final service contract, we will ask the Contractor to specifically include the services which are subcontracted, including which service providers are being subcontracted. Subcontracting of the hosting of the service is allowed, provided that European privacy legislation is respected.Subcontract and subcontractors shall be previously approved in writing by the EUI. Therefore it is not possible to give, a priori, a general authorisation on this matter.
Q14(t) II.10: We will simply be configuring our system for you and we will not be creating any new IPR that the University would own. Therefore, could sections II.10.3 and II.10.9 please be deleted, as well as all references to “Materials” if present elsewhere?
A: Our general conditions cannot be changed. Articles II.10.3 and II.10.9 will be added to Article I.13 as being not applicable to this contract. There are no other references to ‘Materials’ aside from Article II.10.
Q14(u) II.10.8: We agree with the remedies in this section, except for the addition of direct losses as a result of breach, as these would be decided by a court. Could this please be removed?
A: Please see previous response. This clause shall remain.
Q14(v) II.12: As implementation is a collaborative process, we would hope that this article regarding liquidated damages could be removed. We would be amenable to discussing a mutually acceptable implementation plan with you to ensure that agreed timelines will be met.
A: II.1.12 covers a specific situation which indeed is part of dispute settlement. The article is part of our standard conditions included in any contract and therefore will not be removed. It is not possible even to consider it as “not applicable”.
Q14(w) II.14.3: Can the requirement to draw up all documents within 60 days be extended to 120 days?
A: See answer (m) of this question.
Q14(x) II.15.5: As mentioned previously, performance guarantees are not customary in our industry; can this section please be removed?
A: See answer (a) of this question.
Q14(y) II.18: We are ISO 27001 and 27018 certified and we also undergo annual audits for these certifications, as well as for SOC 1 and SOC 2 reporting. Can this Article please be modified to state that any audits under this Article would only occur should the contracting authority have serious cause to believe that we are in material breach of our contractual obligations?
A: This is a standard clause of our general conditions and cannot be modified.
Q: Contractor has reviewed the President’s Decision No. 40 of 27 August 2013 (EUI Data Protection Policy) and it is our understanding that Article 13 is the only applicable article to Contractor as this covers the transfer of personal data to third parties. The other articles included in the EUI Data Protection Policy apply to EUI as the data controller, and as such, it is Contractor’s understanding that they are not applicable to the agreement between Contractor and EUI. Contractor shall provide its Data Processing Addendum with its response to allow EUI to confirm that any transfer of personal data to Contractor is done in accordance with Article 13 and GDPR. Please confirm our understanding is correct.
A: In addition to Article 13, Articles 1 and 2 define the scope and definition of the policy; as personal data is copied to the LMS, this is considered processing (2b) and this makes the successful tenderer an ‘External processor’ (2d). Furthermore confidentiality and security are covered and (at least partially) deemed relevant (10). Article 18 defines that no processing may occur by an external processor without consent/instruction from Controller. Other articles are indeed of EUI internal nature.
Q16(a): With reference to Annex D - Draft Service Contract, Article I.9 – Termination by Either Party without cause; Would the EUI be willing to remove this clause? As this is an optional multi-year deal we feel this clause is not necessary as termination can be agreed at contract year end.
A: The contract does not foresee licence fees to be paid back by Contractor in case of contract termination. As the licence fees are paid in a yearly amount, removing this article would not have a financial implication. As the startup or switch costs for this system are high, non-renewal or even termination would have to be justified by heavy-weight arguments, which we do not foresee, but also cannot rule out.
Q16(b): With reference to Annex D - Draft Service Contract, Article I.10 – Mechanism of Sanctions and Penalties, Article II.12 – Liquidated Damages, and specific reference to Article II.3, Clause II 3.3; Would the EUI be agreeable to changing the liability to an amount not exceeding 1.5 the total amount of the contract?
A: See the answer to question Q14(p); we’ve agreed to limit the liability to the total amount of the yearly contract.
Q16(c): With reference to Annex D - Draft Service Contract, Article II.13 – Suspension of the Performance of the Contract; Would the EUI be willing to remove this clause? As this is an optional multi-year deal we feel this clause is not necessary as termination can be agreed at contract year end.
A: Being an international organization governed by public law, we wish to maintain the option of suspending the contract at any moment in case of substantial errors, irregularities or fraud. Therefore we cannot waive this clause.
Q: If we believe we partially comply or provide a superior experience to meet the objective may we respond with "yes" to requirements and then provide an explanation of how we meet the requirements?
A: See also the answer to question 4; in case the requirement is not met literally/fully, but you are able to provide a functional alternative which services the functional need specified, please describe how you intend to provide the functionality and we will respond whether this is acceptable.
Q18(a) Section 8.1.1 Administrative Documents, #4, states that vendors must submit “copies of the Invitation to Tender Letter, of the Special Tender Specifications and of the Draft Contract, without any additions, amendments or changes, initialled on each page and bearing the Tenderer's stamp and full signature of the Owner or Legal Representative on the last page.Can EUI confirm that by signing and initialling, vendors will not be bound by the terms of the Draft Contract until it has been finalized (after award).
A: Indeed this is a draft contract and not legally binding. However, the draft contract has to be considered as a near final version which may be amended or extended but only to a limited degree. Any clauses with which you do not want or cannot comply shall be clarified before submitting your offer.
Q18(b) Section 8.1.1 Administrative Documents, #7, states that vendors must “provide a provisional bid bond for 2% of the presumed amount of the tender, or €1500”.Given that the fees associated with securing the bid bond exceed €1500, will EUI agree to accept a Certified Cheque submitted with the completed proposal?
A: Yes, this is acceptable.
Q19(a): Contractor fully supports the Contracting Authority’s right to audit contractor’s provisioning of the services in support of this contract. However, as Vendor’s services are hosted in a secure public cloud environment, we (and any other vendors whose products are similarly cloud-hosted) cannot unilaterally grant authorization to access the premises in which our services are hosted. Additionally, in order to ensure that audits do not place undue burden on the ability of the contractor to continue to operate and maintain the SaaS services, Contractor requests that Contracting Authority provide reasonable prior notice and proper coordination with contractor personnel in advance of such audits.
A: This is a standard general condition of the draft service contract in use at the EUI, therefore it is not suitable to be modified nor to be omitted. We accept the fact that we cannot access a secure public cloud environment. We also agree to provide reasonable prior notice and coordination with contractor in case of such audits.
Q19(b): Can the Institute clarify if there are financial penalties associated with missing the KPIs defined in section 4.1 of the Special Tender Specifications? If yes, can the University clarify what those penalties are?
A: These penalties are included in article 11.2.4 of the Special Tender Specifications.
Q19(c): Contractor has implemented a comprehensive multi-layer backup scheme to prevent against data loss and support disaster recovery. This scheme includes twice daily full backups, which are retained for 30 days. Our clients are also empowered to make course-based backups on demand or in bulk by submitting a support ticket. Will the Institute accept this alternate backup scheme, which should satisfy the requirements of data recovery in alignment with industry standards, in order to satisfy the KPIs regarding backup defined in the Special Tender Specifications?
A: The backup frequency specified in article 4.1 of the STS requires a daily backup to be retained seven days. Requesting backups by ticket is acceptable if this can be a scheduled and recurring backup.
Q19(d): Processor does not typically guarantee response times due the variability of response time measurements, including some factors which may be outside Processor's control such as variability in round-trip time from end user to the site. In lieu of response time measurements, will the Institute accept average measurements of user experience in excess of an established limit (e.g., Apdex)?
A: We accept some variability and agree to an Apdex score of 0,85. Also note that we will only evaluate response times from our own premises. Our network is connected to GARR (network of Italian research institutions) which is directly connected to GÉANT. This should virtually eliminate any third-party delays in service delivery. See also article II.11 in the Draft Service Contract on Force Majeure which may apply in exceptional cases beyond contractor’s influence. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apdex)
Q19(e): With reference to 7.6.1 Scoring in the STS-CFT-EUI-ICTS-2018-001.pdf document; The percentage value is multiplied by a number-N. This number should reflect the points score to be obtained on criterion ‘Economic offer’ (see 7.5.6 Scoring explanation). The formula reports N=20, we were expecting N=30 to reflect the weighting listed under 7.1 Criteria Scores.
A: This observation is correct, the calculation is multiplied by 30 indeed.
Q: With regard to the Bid Bond, can EUI please clarify when the expiration date for the bid bond should be, and what type of institution must issue it, and does it have to be within the borders of the country in which the bid is being submitted?
A: See also 18(b). The type of institution and duration are specified in the STS article 8.1.1 sub 7 (page 32).
Q21(a): As a true cloud provider, we use a single solution across multiple tenants to service our 1,000+ customers. To facilitate information distribution we maintain a website for all incidents impacting Availability. We guarantee 99.9% availability on an annual basis, not per month. Please change this requirement to reflect that measurement can be annual.
A: An annual uptime of 99.9% instead of 99% per 30 days is accepted; both KPI’s suffice in respect to service delivery.
Q21(b): We are unable to guarantee page load times. This is because we do not have control over the “last mile” of connectivity to our user networks, or the internet generally. Please change this requirement to reflect suppliers' abilities to control the internet.
A: See answer 19(d).
Q21(c): Merge fields is not generally a function of a virtual learning environment. We cater for personalised notifications to the user, not auto-generated messages that do not engage users. We request that this Requirement be lowered to a D1-D3.
A: Requirement F.4.2.8 aims to personalise interaction with users by being able to address them by name; this requirement doesn’t mean to merge other types of information. If an alternative to merge fields is offered, by which users are addressed in a personal way this is sufficient to positively answer this question.F.4.2.8 - It is possible to use merge fields in individual and/or bulk messages (such as first name, last name).
In the event the bond may be delayed, would vendor accept this being delivered or forwarded separately from the main submission?
A: The bid bond should be included in the offer documentation. If the leadtime for acquiring the bid bond would be a problem, please consider Q18(b).
In answer to question 14(p), you've agreed to cap limitation of liability to being 12 months of fees paid. The answer to question (q) is less clear. Can you please re-confirm that the cap of limitation of liability is 12 months of fees paid?
A: The total cap of liability as described in II.3.3 of Annex D – Draft Service Contract is indeed 12 months of fees paid. This cap does not include the penalties as defined under 11.2 of the STS.