Case study two - Inspire Workplaces

Each of our case studies has been provided by enterprises across Northern Ireland who have been successful in winning public sector tenders. Their experience and advice may be helpful for you to learn how to access public sector opportunities.

Inspire Workplaces

Inspire Workplaces (formerly known as Carecall) is a social enterprise based in Northern Ireland. We were established in 1998 and are owned by the Northern Ireland Association for Mental Health. We have a team of 18 staff based in Belfast and we work with an extensive network of over 300 counsellors across Ireland and the UK.

Our primary role is the provision of Employee Assistance Programme services to over 300,000 employees across Ireland and the UK and we also support 150,000 students at college and university with psychological support services.

We provide confidential 24 hour support and face to face counselling sessions to help individuals who are struggling to cope with difficult events both at work and in their private lives. We currently support all staff working within the Northern Ireland Civil Service, Health & Social Care Trusts, Education & Library Boards, Local Government Councils and Translink among many other clients in both the public and private sector.

Dedicated member of staff for tendering

We have a dedicated Business Development Manager who handles our bid management process internally. The public sector contract is core to our business and has provided a platform to grow our business across Northern Ireland and beyond.

Embracing e-procurement

The process for submitting a tender is very straightforward and easy to follow - this has enabled us to grow in confidence when presented with the opportunity to complete a tender using the e-procurement process.

Ask questions and leave yourself enough time!

My advice for public sector tenders is to make sure to engage with the buyer on any query you have - no matter how small it may be within the overall process; and plan your bid management time well in advance. You will always find yourself under pressure, so make as much time as possible available!

John Conaghan, Key Contracts Manager, Inspire Workplace

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