The Annual Reviews will involve a visit to Papua New Guinea. The SP may also be required to travel to Canberra to brief DFAT staff; DFAT will advise the SP on this when negotiating the Annual Review Service Order(s). The SP should liaise with the PGF and JSS4D management and delivery units and the AHC to plan the annual reviews well in advance, to clarify data needs and availability, the activities to be sampled and the proposed process, timelines and responsibilities. The PGF and JSS4D management and delivery units are expected to assist, facilitate and support appropriately the QTAG SP and annual review process.
Category 2 and 3 services will be predominantly desk-based with outputs delivered by email or by telephone, though these may on occasion require travel by QTAG personnel in the event of a request outside of the usual Annual Review processes.
The QTAG SP will provide concise monthly reports (agreed format) and invoices to the AHC itemising the services provided for reimbursement and summarising performance against the agreed service standards. In addition to these monthly reports, the SP will provide a brief six-monthly report to the AHC, SMC and SPGM on key issues, opportunities and risks arising from the QTAG’s operations. These will be provided at the mid-point of the annual review cycle and as part of the Annual Review reports. QTAG Annual Reviews for both programs may be public documents.
Monitoring and evaluation
DFAT is committed to ensuring value for money. During the set up phase, the QTAG SP will develop a results framework for the operation of the QTAG that will include agreed service standards (covering quality, timeliness and cost) for each of the three categories of support. For the services provided, the SP will need to demonstrate consistent adherence to international good practice and knowledge and leadership of emerging best practice.
A formal performance review of the quality and effectiveness of the services will happen after one year and annually thereafter, including an end of contract assessment. These will be organised by the AHC and will include feedback from recipients of the services. Arrangements for these reviews will be confirmed at contract award stage.
Tenderers should explain their proposed approach to risk management. This should include consideration of risk at the following levels:
implementation, given the breadth and demand-led nature of the services required and challenges of the operating context in PNG;
conflict of interest, given the potential for Annual Reviews to assess the effectiveness of activities on which QTAG has provided guidance;
relationship management, given the need for constructive working relations with the two programs and authorative and independent advice to AHC and GoPNG;
mission creep, given the potential demand for expert advisory inputs beyond the QTAG’s remit; and
the wider operating environment, including political and personnel security risk.
Duty of Care and Security
This procurement will require the QTAG SP to potentially operate in conflict-affected areas and insecure areas. QTAG SP personnel may be required to undertake field visits to provincial areas of PNG. All such internal travel will be subject to the security situation and clearance by AHC (Security). The SP should be comfortable working in such an environment and should be capable of deploying to any areas required within the region in order to deliver the contract (subject to travel clearance).
The QTAG SP will be responsible for ensuring that appropriate arrangements, processes and procedures are in place for the safety and well-being of their personnel and Third Parties affected by their activities under this contract, taking into account the environment they will be working in and the level of risk involved in delivery of the contract. The SP must ensure their Personnel receive the required level of training prior to deployment.
The QTAG SP will develop and implement systems and processes that guard against fraud, nepotism and corruption. This will include:
A ‘zero tolerance’ position on fraud;
Using transparent processes in the selection of local service providers and other contractual arrangements and exercise due diligence over any sub-contractors;
Suitable financial management procedures clearly articulated, that are compliant with the relevant financial management, fraud control and accountability requirements of DFAT. This includes processes that enable all funds to be tracked, justified, reported on and (where required) audited; and
The QTAG SP will be required to notify AHC immediately where any financial mismanagement or fraud is detected or suspected, either within QTAG operations or those of the programs reviewed by QTAG.
Procurement and Contracting Arrangements
It is envisaged that the QTAG will be contracted for an initial period from contract signing until 30 June 2020, with options to extend util 30 June 2024, through a Period Offer (Deed) arrangement with DFAT. Each specific request by the AHC for QTAG services will be contracted through a Services Order. The AHC in Port Moresby will have overall responsibility for the QTAG contract management and administration.
Gender and Inclusiveness
The Australian government recognises that gender equality and equality of opportunity for people living with disabilities is critical to development and has committed to ensuring it is a key part of aid programming. Access to gender and disability expertise will be an important element of the service provided by the QTAG to the PGF and JSS4D programs as well as liaison with relevant expertise within AHC programs. In addition, bidders should explain how they propose addressing gender and inclusiveness issues in the three categories of QTAG support as well as their own management and operational processes.
DFAT has over-riding policies associated with child protection with all funded SPs and bound by strict policies in relation to managing and reducing risks of child abuse by persons engaged in delivering DFAT activities. This includes a ‘zero tolerance’ approach on all issues relating to child abuse and child pornography. The QTAG SP will reflect this clear, unambiguous policy in planning, operations and management. All QTAG SP contracted staff required to visit Papua New Guinea will be briefed on DFAT’s Child Protection policies and the SP’s approach incorporated into a QTAG operating guide.
Value for Money
Value for money is a key consideration for DFAT. Value for money is not delivered as a one-off exercise but is a continuous management process. The SP will be required to demonstrate clear value for money for all activities supported by the QTAG. This will include demonstrating that administrative costs are minimised; that management processes (including procurement procedures) are designed to maximise cost effectiveness; that commercial risks are managed sensibly in a geographically challenging operating environment; and that funds are allocated based on evidence of results to ensure the greatest possible impact.
With this in mind, the AHC will, in discussion with the SP, establish service standards for the different categories of QTAG support. These will form the basis for assessing on-going value for money on at least an annual basis. The measures and approach will be agreed during the set up phase. At this stage, bidders should explain their prospective approach and how, through their pricing, staffing and management processes, they will deliver expected best value for money for DFAT.
1 Australian aid: promoting prosperity, reducing poverty, enhancing stability: http://dfat.gov.au/about-us/publications/Pages/australian-aid-promoting-prosperity-reducing-poverty-enhancing-stability.aspx
3 Making Performance Count: Enhancing the accountability and effectiveness of Australian aid http://dfat.gov.au/about-us/publications/Pages/making-performance-count-enhancing-the-accountability-and-effectiveness-of-australian-aid.aspx
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