Mailroom and Freight Services RFT 12/089 questions and answers

Tuesday 18 September 2012

Schedule 1 Statement of Requirements clause 1.3.14 suggests the successful Tenderer will have “Scales which connect to computer”.

Q.1. Could you please explain the need for connection to a computer?  Would this be a Library or a contractor computer?

A.1. The purpose of this clause is to ensure a fully integrated approach with scales linked to a computer for recordkeeping and in turn, linked via internet to external mail and freight systems.  An alternative integrated methodology is acceptable.  The Library will not be providing the computer.

Schedule 1 Statement of Requirements clause 1.3.14 suggests that the successful Tenderer should have computers and other equipment, and the description indicates that this equipment will be connected to the Library’s network.

Q.2. Apart from software, which is covered, is there any minimum configuration or restrictions for computer equipment that needs to be connected to the Library’s network?

A.2. Minimum configuration is Windows XP or Mac OS-X with TCP/IP network at 10Mbps. All computer equipment must be checked by Library IT staff for any possible network configuration issues prior to commissioning on to the Library's network.

Q.3. Is it possible to also have computer/s connected to the Internet and / or the successful Tenderer’s network?

A.3. Yes - this is possible providing the computer equipment is configured with the Library's anti virus software or approved anti virus software. The Library would provide at no cost anti virus software for equipment installed in Library premises. The computer may be connected via a VPN across the internet to the Tenderers network. 

Schedule 1 Statement of Requirements clause 1.3.23 outlines a requirement for “the successful Tenderer to provide extended Mailroom services outside of the normal operating hours”.

Q.4. Will services required during such additional operating hours be confined to services normally provided by the mailroom, or will staff be undertaking or alternative additional duties?  If so, what are those duties?

A.4. The services to be provided are confined to same services normally provided by the mailroom.  It covers instances where large volumes of freight associated with a major event or exhibition must be received or shipped.

Q.5. To assist in preparation of a relevant response, can you advise how often and for how long each time this occurred in the past 12 months, please?

A.5. Over the past few years, the mailroom has remained open approximately once in 3 years and only for a few hours to assist with deliveries or shipments associated with major exhibitions.

Schedule 1 Statement of Requirements clause 6.1 states that where the Library requires, staff are to be cleared “to Commonwealth security standards”.

Schedule 1 Statement of Requirements clause 6.3 states “It will be the successful Tenderer’s responsibility at its own cost to arrange the screening of its personnel.”

Q.6. Can the Library advise, should such clearances be required, what level is required and the cost for such clearances?  In order to assess the cost of this requirement, can the Library advise how many of such clearances have been required of the incumbent supplier and over what time period?

A.6. It is anticipated that at the commencement of the contract Mailroom staff will only be required to pass a “Police Check”.  Should a variation to the security requirements change, consideration will be given to appropriate variations to the contract.  No costs have been incurred in this area by recent contractors other than for police checks.  

Schedule 1 Statement of Requirements clause 1.5.4 states “Audio collection materials requires door to door next flight delivery service.”

Q.7. Are these deliveries from the National Library in the ACT to Australian destinations?  Are deliveries to destinations outside major metropolitan cities required?

A.7. Yes the deliveries are from the Library in Canberra to Australian destinations, mainly to major metropolitan cities and to some regional areas where flights permit. 

Schedule 1 Statement of Requirements clause 1.8.3 (e) requires the “ability to accommodate a Library staff courier where required and to provide assistance to that courier (particularly during overseas shipments)”.

Q.8. Can the Library expand on this requirement, please?  Can the Library give examples of the circumstances where this has been utilised in the past, the origin and destination points, and the frequency, please?

A.8. The Library will provide a Courier for any loan where, in the opinion of the Library, the value, significance or fragility of the Work/s is such that supervision by Library personnel is required during transport, condition reporting, and installation and demount of the Work/s.

In general this is applied in the following circumstances:

  • Where the cumulative value of a shipment is more than AUD$1 million
  • Where the objects are fragile and require supervision by a conservator.
  • Where the objects are considered Priority 1 objects by the lending institution regardless of monetary value.
  • Where the lending institution insists on a courier to accompany any loan as a reasonable condition of that loan.

The Library has between 6 and 15 courier trips per year, nationally and internationally. 

Recent examples in the past 12 months include;

  • two German couriers from Berlin to Canberra (and return) for Handwritten exhibition,
  • a Library courier from Canberra to Auckland for the  loan of paintings to Auckland Art Gallery; and
  •  a Library courier from Canberra to Adelaide for the loan of artwork to the Art Gallery of SA.

Schedule 4 Price Schedule item 1.8 asks for pricing for a range of Specialist Services.

In relation to the provision of climate controlled air ride vehicles:

Q.9. How often are such services required?

A.9.  Frequently. All freight of significant and valuable collection material for inward loans and major acquisitions requires this service.  Depending on the schedule and the volume of acquisitions it could be up to 60 transits per year.

Q.10. Can you provide examples of source and destination for such shipments?

A.10. Inward loans - we borrow artworks from a number of institutions nationwide including regional galleries and museums, recent examples include original valuable artworks from the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney; the British Museum, London and the University of New England, Armidale.  

Major acquisitions – recent examples include large valuable floor globes from New York, paintings from auction houses in Sydney and Melbourne and rare books from a specialist antiquarian dealer in Sydney.

Q.11. Can you provide examples of the size of the vehicle required, based on the size of the shipments made in the past?

A.11:  Depending on the size of the consignment we will accept everything from a large van to a 40ft pantechnicon providing it is air ride and climate controlled.  Generally our regular contractors use 40ft pantechnicons.

Q.12. Is it envisaged that Contractor staff will pack shipments for this service?  If so, will the Library provide packing materials or do they need to be provided by the Contractor?

A.12.  Most Exhibition consignments are packed before transit by the forwarder, there are some occasions when packing is required by the contractor.  In the past 2 years the Library has had approximately 60 consignments packed by a contractor.

In relation to the provision of staff trained to pack and unpack artworks:

Q.13. In what locations are these services required, or where have they been provided in the past?

A.13. These services are generally required in major metropolitan cities in Australia in recent times in Sydney and Melbourne.

Q.14. How many of such requirements occurred in the past 2 years?

A.14.  In the past 2 years there have been approximately 26 instances.

Q.15. Does the Llibrary provide packing materials or do they need to be provided by the Contractor?

A.15. If the packing occurs offsite then the Contractor will need to supply adequate materials.  The Library may on occasion send a crate for use in packing.

Q.16. Is the Library looking for one provider to deliver all of the services or could a tenderer bid for only one component?

A.16. Yes - Tenderers can if they wish, tender for one only of the proposed services.  Please refer to Part C, Clause 14.1 of the RFT document which states:

Tenderers may tender for any item or items, or part or parts of the Services, and the Library reserves the right to accept a Tender or separate Tenders for part or parts of the Services.

Industry Briefing Questions:

Q.17. Will there be a panel arrangement for the different freight services?

A.17. The Library does not intend to go to a separate panel arrangement with deeds of standing offers for each of the different freight services. However, the tender does not preclude the Library from using other providers who offer value for money for part or parts of the Services.  There may be therefore a number of contracted suppliers for the Services.   Please refer to Part C Requirements of Tenders clauses 14 and 15.

Q. 18. Who is responsible for arranging police checks?

A.18. The successful Tenderer is responsible for arranging police checks of employees and providing the completed documentation to the Library’s Security team.

Q.19. What are the current staffing levels in the mailroom?

A.19. The mailroom is to be staffed at all times from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm Monday to Friday.  The successful Tenderer will need to ensure sufficient resources are engaged to facilitate all deliveries and keep a person in the Mailroom at all times.  Service delivery volume estimates are provided within Schedule 1 Statement of Requirement at paragraphs 1.3.6 and 1.3.7.  The Library is not prescriptive of the total number of staff required as long as the Service levels are successfully maintained.

Q.20. Will mail room staff be required to operate a forklift and do they need to be licensed?

A.20. Answer.  Yes - the Mailroom staff will be required to operate their own equipment to unload/load trucks and will be expected to be fully trained and licensed if required.

Q.21. Who will be responsible for “out of hours” deliveries?

A.21. The successful Tenderer’s employees are responsible for deliveries from 8.00 am to 5.00 pm.  Deliveries outside the operational hours of the Mailroom are received by the Library’s Security contractors.

Q.22. Do the pallet jacks and forklift equipment have to be supplied?

A.22. Yes - please refer to Schedule 1 paragraph 1.3.14 which lists the minimum suggested equipment.

Q.23. Secure waste bins – who is responsible?

A.23. The secure waste bins housed in the Loading Bay are not part of the Mailroom Service.

Q.24. Who supplies the PC’s in the mailroom?

A.24. The successful Tenderer will provide the computer equipment - please refer to Schedule 1 paragraph 1.3.14 which lists the minimum suggested equipment.

Q.25. Who is responsible for the distribution of print room materials?

A.25. The Print Room is currently managed by another contractor who is responsible for distribution of all their material.

Q.26. Does the Mailroom have camera surveillance? 

A.26. No - the Mailroom at present does not have camera surveillance however, it is a secure area close to the Security desk and can only be accessed by authorised personnel.  It is protected with an electronic security pass system.

Q.27. Who owns the Hazard Identification Equipment?

A.27. Answer.  The Library owns and maintains the Powder safe equipment.  The successful Tenderer’s employees must know the mail screening practices for identifying and responding to dangerous and suspicious items.  Please refer to Schedule 1 paragraphs 1.3.25 and 1.3.15 (d).

Q.28.  In the RFT it states that requests for further information or clarification relating to the RFT are to be formally lodged in writing no later than 5 pm on the day that is 5 Business Days prior to the Tender Closing.  As there are two ACT Public Holidays (1st and 8th October) during this period, can you confirm the cut-off for Q.s is Friday 28 September 2012?

A.28. In order to assist potential tenderers and ensure that submissions are completed on time, Q.s will be accepted up to 5pm on Tuesday 2 October 2012. 

Q.29. How are the stationery deliveries to be handled?

A.29. The stationery deliveries will be part of the bulk mail deliveries and will need to be delivered to the recipient’s desk/area. 

Q.30. Are there any problems getting documents through the Library’s firewall?

A.30. The successful Tenderer will be assisted to ensure appropriate documents and sites can be accessed through the firewall.

Q.31. Can you clarify which mail items need to be opened?

A.31. The successful Tenderer’s employees will be trained by Library employees as to which items should be opened.  These are normally only generically addressed items.  Please refer to Schedule 1 paragraph 1.3.5.

Q.32. What is the Mailroom role in receiving deliveries of assets?

A.32. The Mailroom, following initial training by the Library, is responsible for identifying the assets when they arrive and notifying the ‘Receipting Officer’ in Records Management Unit.  The Records Management Unit staff will then undertake any consequent action.  Arriving assets are normally addressed to ‘The Receipting Officer’.

Q.33. Do the Mailroom staff have any responsibility for deliveries for the Restaurant?

A.33. No - the Mailroom staff do not have any responsibility for deliveries of food or other items for the restaurant or cafe.