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Cumbria LEP Tender Specification for the Provision of Supply Chain Support


Cumbria Local Enterprise Partnership (CLEP) is seeking to appoint an organisation to deliver support to the Regional Supply Chain Network within Westmorland and Furness, for the remainder of the 2023/24 financial year and through to early 2025.

The Regional Supply Chain Network (RSCN) has been created to provide an opportunity for businesses local to the Furness area (LA and CA postcodes), to get together and share knowledge, skills and experience with each other to try to help build a more efficient and effective supply chain in the local area. The RSCN has a membership of around 50 local organisations and has held seven RSCN events so far.

CLEP has recently secured grant funding from Westmorland and Furness Council to deliver the Business Support, Start-Up and Growth strand of the Shared Prosperity Fund in the Westmorland and Furness area. Part of this funding includes the appointment of an organisation to work with the Regional Supply Chain Network (RSCN) to deliver on identified actions to overcome four key challenge areas. This activity will run until 31 January 2025.

The support provided will facilitate an important step forward for the RSCN. Through a member survey and workshop, the Network identified four key challenge areas that needed addressing:

  • Collaboration & communicationM
  • Supply Chain IssuesM
  • Tendering & ContractingM
  • RecruitmentM

In delivering support, CLEP would like to secure an organisation with a strong track record in supporting supply chain development, to ensure that more businesses are able to engage with local supply chains. CLEP is open to applications from sole traders with expertise in delivering support services.

25 businesses from Westmorland and Furness will be directly supported through this programme to develop their supply chain capability however a much larger number of businesses will be engaged in events and seminars as part of awareness raising activity.

The contract will operate on the basis of pricing per the period of the agreement, with invoices submitted on a monthly basis detailing the time spent on the project. In advance of commencing the support, the appointed organisation will need to secure agreement from CLEP to ensure that the businesses supported are not already receiving support elsewhere.

CLEP will promote the opportunities through its extensive database but the appointed organisation will need to be committed to sourcing participants through business development activity.

Key to the successful delivery of this support will be the achievement of programme outcomes, specifically improving productivity levels of participating businesses, and enabling access to new markets, as well as safeguarding jobs.

CLEP is committed to supporting businesses on a growth trajectory and with ambition to improve turnover and profitability. As such the successful organisation will be expected to contribute to the full range of programme outcomes as listed below:

  • Jobs safeguarded
  • Businesses with improved productivity
  • Businesses with new to the firm technology or process
  • Businesses engaged in new markets

Responsibilities for the successful organisation will include:

  • Reporting to the Chair of the RSCN Steering Group lead on the organisation of the day-to-day functions of the Network.
  • Organise and manage the regular events and steering group meetings of the RSCN.
  • Work with the RSCN Steering group to achieve the identified actions listed above as key challenge areas.
  • Prepare all documented minutes of meetings and report on progress of delivery of the RSCN identified actions.
  • Prepare regular progress reports for the Cumbria Accelerator Programme Manager as part of the Shared Property Fund Grant Funding Agreement and submit these to time and standard.
  • Identify potential grant funding for the RSCN to utilise for developing the functions of the RSCN further and to help address any training needs required by the RSCN.
  • Work closely with CLEP staff to further promote and utilise both the Cumbria Accelerator programme and the Barrow Business & Enterprise Support Project for the RSCN.

Please include an overview of how you would deliver this support within your application.

You will also need to include details of your approach to monitor and confirm outcomes with participating businesses.

The contract will run from the date of appointment until 31 January 2025, subject to the satisfaction of the parties. Any work beyond this date would be subject to a further competitive tender.

Appointed organisations will need to provide all necessary paperwork in line with contractual requirements.

Experience Required:

The successfully appointed organisation(s) or individuals will be required to have experience and expertise in:

  • Advice and Support – to businesses, with recognised expertise in supply chain development.
  • Strong communication skills – verbally, presentationally and in writing and confident in dealing with a range of audiences
  • Analytical skills – to rapidly assess the needs of businesses and provide advice in relation to these
  • Outcome Focus – to deliver high-quality outcomes to time and in line with work programme requirements
  • Ability to absorb large amounts of information – in order to provide the necessary advice to businesses
  • Excellent planning, organisational and project management skills – to ensure that all activity is managed and effectively recorded.
  • Well-developed IT skills – including an understanding of management information systems, diary management, e-mail and CRM databases
  • Understanding of Cumbria’s economy and business base – to ensure that the support provided is fully informed by the operating environment.
  • The ability to promote opportunities to participants – to ensure that the programme achieves its targets.

Recruitment and Project Management:

CLEP will promote the programme to businesses within its own wider networks in Cumbria. Delivery partners are also required to promote the programme through their own networks and encourage take up of the offer of support.

Participants will receive triage through CLEP’s Programmes Team and then be signposted for support; or if recruited directly the delivery partner will need to contact CLEP’s Programme team to confirm the eligibility of the business to receive support and to log the business details with CLEP. A check will be made by CLEP to ensure that business is not already engaged with this programme of support.

A final customer satisfaction review will be conducted by CLEP at the end of each engagement as well as an opportunity to signpost to additional support that may be available to each business. All activity will be logged on a CLEP managed CRM system and delivery partners must provide all details in relation to this.

Submission Date:

Tender responses should be submitted by 11.59pm on Friday 15 December 2023.


The LEP:

The Cumbria LEP (CLEP) is the government-endorsed body with the strategic responsibility for economic growth and productivity in Cumbria. It has responsibility for delivering on the roles and responsibilities outlined within government’s “Strengthened Local Enterprise Partnerships” report namely taking lead responsibility for strategy; allocation of funds; co-ordination and advocacy in relation to economic growth, prosperity and productivity.

About Cumbria:

The CLEP geography is co-terminous with the boundary of Cumbria. It is a strategically important geography, with assets that are of consequence to the nation. Our economy generates £12 billion and we are home to 500,000 people. Across England’s LEP areas we stand out in terms of our large geographical size (at 6,800 sq. miles we are the 8th largest LEP area) combined with a relatively low population (at around 500,000 the third smallest LEP area population). This means that Cumbria has by far the lowest population density and economic output density (GVA per hectare) of any LEP area. Cumbria therefore faces particular challenges from the degree to which our businesses are spread out over a large area in terms of delivery of services, linkages between businesses and travel to work and learn distances.

Cumbria’s economy is:

  • one of the most concentrated areas of manufacturing in the UK: 23% of our GVA and 16% of our employment comes from manufacturing placing us 3rd and 1st in LEP rankings. We are home to world class manufacturing firms that export globally and are at the forefront of innovation.
  • a major player in the UK’s energy sector: a world recognised centre for nuclear expertise, especially in de-commissioning technologies and innovation; in integration development of defence nuclear power transmission in submarines; is home to over 16% of the UK’s windfarm generation capacity, which as at the leading edge of energy generation improvements and home to a strong cluster of firms in the offshore sub-sea sector; a centre for the oil and gas sector; and a location of opportunities and expertise in several other forms of energy.
  • globally recognised for its beauty and natural capital – with over 45 million visits each year and home to the world-renowned Lake District, the country’s most visited National Park with the greatest level of tourism activity and now a World Heritage Site. The Lake District along with parts of the Yorkshire Dales National Park, Hadrian’s Wall World Heritage Site and three Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty mean that we have the most extensive coverage of protected landscapes in England.
  • a market-leader in the practical application of natural capital to the sustainable management of land and agriculture, building on the opportunities from World Heritage Status for the Lake District and a centre for innovative value-added production from land-based industries.


The following information is required from tendering organisations:

A. Experience

Details of the skills and experience of the team member(s) providing advisory support:

  • Evidence of experience in delivering this service for other organisations;
  • A CV containing a synopsis of their skills and experience relevant to providing the service; (maximum three sides A4);
  • The names and organisations of two referees for whom similar activity has been conducted.

B. Approach

Details of the proposed approach for successfully delivering the advisory activity, including the approach to lead generation to identify suitable clients. This should include the volume of sessions that the organisation wishes to deliver, together with a profile for the delivery of these for the period up until 31 January 2025. The profile should not be backloaded.

C. Price

The expectation is that the payment for this service will be £30,000 over the lifetime of the agreement. Payments will be made monthly, proportionately, in arrears.

D. Duration

The Contract will run until 31 January 2025. Any work beyond this date would be subject to a further competitive tender.

E. Submission Deadline

Applications are to be submitted by 11.59pm Friday 15 December 2023. Please send applications to Paul Foster, Head of Programmes at


CLEP will undertake to select the organisation(s) whose tender most appropriately matches the desired outcomes listed in the brief, in terms of capability, experience and approach.

The assessment of this submission will be based on quality, with and the following evaluation table used to score submissions.

CRITERIA SCORE (1-10) WEIGHTING TOTAL (score x weighting)
Quality – Experience   50  
Quality – Approach   50  
TOTAL     Max score 1000

The highest scoring submission will be the one securing the highest total score against all criteria.

The evidence matrix below will be used to ensure a consistent approach when awarding a score of 0 to 10 against each of the criteria. A score of 2 (weak) or below in any category will automatically disqualify that submission.

Scores Assessment Interpretation
10 Excellent The approach has been tailored specifically to suit the contract objectives and the requirements of the specification, uses innovative approaches to deal comprehensively with the main management and service risks, and is likely to maximise performance and deliver continuous improvement.
8 Good The approach demonstrates a good understanding of the contract’s objectives and the requirements of the specification. It deals fully with the main management and service risks and provides for delivering continuous improvement over the life of the contract.
5 Acceptable The approach demonstrates an adequate understanding of the contract’s objectives and the requirements of the specification. It covers the main management and service risks to an acceptable standard.
2 Weak The approach meets the specification but fails to demonstrate an adequate understanding of the requirements of the specification.
0 Fail The approach does not meet the requirements of the specification.

CLEP reserves the right to cancel the tender process at any point. CLEP is not liable for any costs resulting from any cancellation of this tender process or for any other costs incurred by those tendering for this contract.

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