Request for Partnership Proposal for E-Learning Platform & Courses
TechnoServe works with enterprising people in the developing world to build competitive farms, businesses, and industries. We are a non-profit organization that develops business solutions to poverty by linking people to information, capital, and markets.
Our work is rooted in the idea that given the opportunity, hardworking men and women in even the poorest places can generate income, jobs, and wealth for their families and communities. With more than five decades of proven results, we believe in the power of private enterprise to transform lives.
TechnoServe is implementing the USAID-funded Alliance for Inclusive and Nutritious Food Processing (AINFP) regional program in collaboration with Partners in Food Solutions (PFS).
The program leverages the power of the private sector to create better nutritional outcomes for base-of-the-pyramid consumers and more profitable market opportunities for local farmers.
This is achieved by supporting local food processing companies in Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, and Zambia through remote technical assistance and training from world leading food processing companies under PFS to increase the availability of safe, affordable and nutritious food.
The AINFP program seeks to deliver remote Customised Assistance (CA) and Sector Wide Trainings (SWTs) in Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, and Zambia covering industry best practices for systemic constraints and challenges. Our main objective is to bring about industry behaviour change in the most effective and cost efficient way through bringing industry actors together and encouraging closer dialogue, knowledge sharing, and awareness across the sector.
We believe that connecting food processors with world class technical assistance, facilitating sustainable linkages to local suppliers who provide reliable and quality raw materials, leveraging affordable financing will increase production of safer, more nutritious foods.
Building the capacity of the food processors to intentionally target the BOP market will increase the availability and access to safe nutritious foods, particularly for low-income and vulnerable populations.
Our learners are food processing sector stakeholders across the program countries; Ethiopia, Kenya, Malawi, Tanzania, and Zambia. These include all food processing firms’ management and factory staff, regulatory bodies, consultants, distribution agencies and raw material aggregators among others.
Having piloted a behaviour change focus on our signature course Food Safety Champions, we would like to transition to a blended learning approach to deliver learning outcomes across our various knowledge centres in the following three categories;
a) Business Development
b) Financial Linkages
c) Food Technology
4. Desired Partner
TechnoServe is soliciting competitive proposals from qualified organizations with existing e-learning platform offering business or technical courses that can be easily customised to the program requirement.
The existing e-learning platform and course material needs to have been tested and tried with various entrepreneurs with a significant level of success across Africa.
5. Blended Learning Platform Core Features
The eLearning platform should align with the following 7 focus areas:
i. Live events: These are instructor-led events such as webinars that helps set the pace for the learner self-paced learning. The instructor in this case will also provide feedback to the clients to ensure the application of the learning to their work place.
ii. Self-Paced Learning: Experiences the learner completes individually on their own time allowing them to apply the learning to their real work situation.
iii. Collaboration: This is a community of practice where learners collaborate and co-create with others to allow peer learning and accountability.
iv. Assessment: Measurements of the extent to which learning has taken place. Assessment is not limited to conventional tests, quizzes, and grades. Narrative feedback, portfolio evaluations and, importantly, a designer’s reflection about a blended learning environment’s effectiveness or usefulness are all forms of assessment.
v. Support Materials: These include reference materials, both physical and virtual, FAQ forums, and summaries. Anything that aids learning retention and transfer.
vi. Analytics and Monitoring: The platform should allow for intelligent analytics and customised reporting at the back end as well as the ability to push communication through email, short message service and social media. Administrators and instructors should be able to monitor learner journeys through tools, alerts, and reporting.
6. Platform Technical Features
a. Responsive design and an existing mobile app
- Be mindful of the size of the interactive elements – they should work on a small touch screen
- Be mindful of navigation that should work on a small touch screen
- use resizable image that will adapt to a small screen
- serve content in small chunks
b. Formats to be delivered:
- Offline version – users with no Internet connection must be able to view it, work on it and sync when they get a connection
- Printable version – content is adapted for print with the understanding that we lose interactive experience but we keep the same information
7. Implementation support required in the long term
We have existing technical content in food processing and a team of subject matter experts to ensure quality and relevance of the content. The platform designers will facilitate content scoping and analysis of the target learner profiles to establish a healthy blend of face to face interaction and online training.
They will be able to advise on the best presentation of the content in various formats such as animations, videos, infographics and then design story boards, guides, tools, assessments, templates for face to face presentation, online learner experience and downloadable implementation tools.
Working closely with TechnoServe staff and technical experts, this content should be parsed into bite-sized learning modules formatted for consumption on web and mobile applications in an engaging way.
8. A qualified firm must have:
a) A successful existing e-learning platform in one or more of the three categories that we are seeking to venture into and willingness to grow into the other two categories.
b) Experience working with local and international organizations and clients of a similar discipline to TechnoServe, with an emphasis on organizations focused on agricultural value chains and food processing. Experience working with both public and private sector partners is strongly preferred.
c) Experience in training project personnel, stakeholders, and end users in the use of applications and database management, including a deep expertise in designing trainings tailored for local communities in East and Southern Africa.
d) Professional ability to handle sensitive information related to organizations and individuals, including a demonstrated ability to respect the confidentiality of such information while working with TechnoServe.
e) Proven ability to ensure robust Information security procedures and principles pertaining to relevant data protection and confidentiality aspects (including appropriate data backups), in accordance with TechnoServe IT standards and procedures, as well as local laws in the country of the application’s operations.
f) Expertise in technology research and the ability to develop industry relevant lessons learned and lessons learned reports for distribution among partners and key stakeholders. Ability to write industry facing reports and conference papers for the distribution of lessons learned.
C. Application & Evaluation Criteria
Proposals must contain the following:
i. Cover Letter: Include contact information (phone and email address), for the team’s designated contact person who can receive and distribute RFP information on behalf of the team. (1-page max)
ii. Firm Qualifications & Experience (40%): Provide firm description and qualifications to address the scope of this assignment, including client references for past projects. Include a link to your existing e-learning platform (1-page max)
iii. Project Understanding and Approach (10%): Provide a brief description of your understanding and approach to the project from your current offering. (half page max)
iv. Technical Approach and Support Overview (15%): Describe vendor support during and after implementation, including a detailed plan for sustainability and support provided long-term. (half-page max)
v. Cost Proposal (25%): The cost proposal must include all design, production, testing and software necessary for the platform and consecutive development and long-term support. Costs should be broken out indicating one-time set up costs, implementation costs, seat licenses and integration costs.
a. The cost to be quoted for should be inclusive of all applicable taxes;
b. ongoing fees that could be incurred as a result of the program specific support should be listed separately with an estimate (based on current market prices).
Timeline and schedule of events
i. Completed responses to the RFP with title clearly marked as “Partnership Proposal for AINFP E-Learning Platform” and should be addressed to the email address below:
Should be received by 23:59 EAT, Monday, 30 November, 2020.
Please note that late submissions will not be considered at all and any form of
Canvasing is prohibited and could lead to automatic disqualification
D. Terms and Conditions
a) The Request for Proposal is not and shall not be considered an offer by TechnoServe.
b) All responses must be received on or before the date and time indicated above. All late responses will be rejected.
c) All unresponsive responses will be rejected.
d) All proposals will be considered binding offers. Prices proposed must be valid for entire period provided by respondent or required by RFP.
e) All awards will be subject to TechnoServe contractual terms and conditions and contingent on the availability of donor funding.
f) TechnoServe reserves the right to accept or reject any proposal or cancel the solicitation process at any time, and shall have no liability to the proposing organizations submitting proposals for such rejection or cancellation of the request for proposals.
g) TechnoServe reserves the right to accept all or part of the proposal when award is provided.
h) All information provided by TechnoServe in this RFP is offered in good faith. Individual items are subject to change at any time, and all bidders will be provided with notification of any changes. TechnoServe is not responsible or liable for any use of the information submitted by bidders or for any claims asserted therefrom.
i) TechnoServe reserves the right to require any bidder to enter into a non-disclosure agreement.
j) The bidders are solely obligated to pay for any costs, of any kind whatsoever, which may be incurred by bidder or any third parties, in connection with the Response. All responses and supporting documentation shall become the property of TechnoServe, subject to claims of confidentiality in respect of the response and supporting documentation, which have been clearly marked confidential by the bidder.
k) Bidders are required to identify and disclose any actual or potential Conflict of Interest.
RELEASE DATE: Friday, October 30, 2020
SUBMISSION DEADLINE: 24:00 EAT, Monday, November 30th, 2020