Bid Library

Portfolio Details

Details

  • Title: Bid Library
  • Categories: .NET, Bespoke Development, SharePoint, Website Development
  • Company: DWF
  • Year: 2012

Description

DWF needed a Bid Library System to allow them to streamline their current Bid (Tender) processes. The Bid teams are required to produce generic and bespoke documentation to specific templates and at present, the process for gathering this information, gaining sign off and formatting each Bid is time consuming and repetitive.

The below requirements were essential for the new SharePoint 2010 Bid Library system developed for DWF:

  • Ability to store, organise and find content for Bids.
  • Use metadata (information stored when saving documents in the document libraries).
  • Categorised and sorted by document types (for example: Policies, CVs and Capability Statements).
  • Streamline the assembly and production of generic documents, which should then require limited manual input.
  • Streamline the process for answering Bid questions, gaining sign off and managing the Bid pipeline.
  • Provide accurate and timely Management Information (MI) in relation to Bids.
  • Easily identify Bid related information from other sources where applicable.
  • Request document updates.
  • Streamline the process for recording CV information and experience, making documents available for bids and legal submissions.

 

Developing the Bid Library within SharePoint 2010, allowed DWF to interact with their other systems. The User Interface was customised to look like the client's other SharePoint systems in use (Extranet and Intranet Sites). This familiarity is a key component in ensuring the smooth introduction of the Library to the DWF teams.  Within the development we integrated other third party components including Tab views and the Output Chart on the homepage, which ensured we kept up-to-date with current trends for the presentation of information and usability.   

To store the large volumes of data needed for the Bids (Tender) Library, our development team programmatically created hidden lists, libraries, content types and site columns. The new content added through the Bid Library was stored, tagged and indexed to make searching, updating and management of content easier than the current process. With version control, documents can be worked on, reviewed and amended all within the Bid Library. Using the SharePoint technology, security and user group access to bids, key documents can be shared, updated and accessed. Permissions was key for the Bid Library system, it allowed the client to control specific areas. These were integrated from SharePoint and allowed the client to predetermine the access within the system for each user.

A Site Collection feature was used to go through and create all the Term Sets required in the Metadata Service. This feature created and configured all the custom Site Columns and Content Types. Therefore, whenever a user uploads a document type, they would be requested to populate certain criteria specific to each document (Metadata / Taxonomy).

This feature also makes its way through all the existing My Site sites and creates and configures the required Content Types, CV Documents, and Profile Image Libraries within the Content Site. This is shown through feature stapling, where these features were automatically stapled to newly created My Sites and the development of a PowerShell commandlet which upgraded all the existing My Site sites.

By using the existing data types with customised searches, the existing content currently stored in the Knowledge (DWF’s firm wide Intranet) was available to be used throughout the Bid process. Exception reporting was also provided which automatically updated all Bids to reflect key areas that needed review. Within DWF this criteria included any unanswered questions, document updates and whether the Bid has met / passed the review date set.

Overall the Bid Library System provided all necessary requirements needed by the client, in a modern bespoke way. The system allowed the client to dramatically reduce the administration time on their Bid processes and to ensure all areas were kept up-to-date with minimum effort.

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