Invitation To Tender

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Newington Housing Association is seeking to appoint an independent consultant to facilitate development of our next 3-year Strategic Plan (2023-26)

 Title of Project:     Newington Housing Association Strategic Plan 2023-26

Funder:                    Newington Housing Association  

About Newington Housing Association

Newington Housing Association has been working exclusively North Belfast for nearly 45 years and currently manages approximately 750 homes.

Since 2014, the Association has delivered 325 new homes including substantial regeneration projects within the New Loge, Newington/Limestone Road, Dunmore/Alexandra Park Avenue and Girdwood areas of North Belfast.

In April 2015, the Board and shareholders of Newington took the courageous decision to become part of the Apex Housing Group. As part of the Group, Newington contributes to meeting housing need throughout Northern Ireland while focusing on its “community based” role in North Belfast. Newington still retains its own independence as a separate Registered Housing Association and is governed by its own Board of Management. The relationship with Apex HA and the Apex Group is managed via an Intra Group Agreement.

Our approach to service delivery and working in partnership with local communities has led to our work being recognised both locally and nationally. In recent years Newington has been won multiple awards. These awards are as much a recognition of not only our hard work and endeavour; but also, the commitment and valuable work of our various community partners.

Below is a list of Awards since 2014;

  • The Aisling Award Winner 2014 for Positive Belfast
  • Construction Employers Federation Residential Award Winner 2014 (The Glen)
  • CIH Working Together in conjunction with Duncairn Community Partnership Award Winner 2015
  • RICS NI Award 2015 – Winner for Best Regeneration Project (Limestone Road Redevelopment)
  • RICS NI Award 2015 – Winner for Best Residential Project (Limestone Road Redevelopment)
  • RICS NI Award 2015 – Winner Overall Project of the Year (Limestone Road Redevelopment)
  • UK Housing Awards 2016 – Winner of Best Regeneration Project (Limestone Road Redevelopment)
  • RICS UK National Awards 2017 – Winner for Best Regeneration Project in N.I. (North Queen Street, Belfast)
  • CIH Awards 2018 – Winner of Best Small Development in partnership with Apex HA (North Queen Street, Belfast)
  • CIH Awards 2019 – Shortlisted for Best Housing Development in partnership with Apex HA (New Lodge Redevelopment)
  • CIH Awards 2021 – Winner Working in Partnership – Newington Credit Union Student Bursary Scheme

By delivering these projects and the additional support services we have enhanced our reputation as an organisation which is engaged with the local community at all levels.

Our Board and Staff

The Board currently has 12 members. There are 4 standing Committees which complement the work of the Board, they are Audit & Risk, Finance & Human Resources, Property Services & Development and Housing & Communities. The organisation employs 21 staff.

We have recently moved into newly constructed office accommodation to facilitate and compliment the growth in our staffing levels. The new office was built on the site of our previous office, as we wanted to ensure we are situated in the heart of the community.

Our Stock and Services

Mainly through our formal strategic partnership with Apex Housing Association, we have delivered in excess of 350 additional homes throughout North Belfast in recent years.

Most of our services are managed directly by a team of dedicated and skilled staff.  The exception to this is Mater Dei Hostel, located on the Antrim Road in Belfast which operates in partnership with De Paul Ireland.

In recent years Newington has invested in the region of £45 million in the homes we provide. As a result of this major investment, we have delivered an additional 350 new homes in areas with some of the highest levels of housing need throughout North Belfast and improved a proportion of our current stock.

The Association works in partnership with various community and statutory organisations throughout North Belfast and actively invests in the local community.

Project Context

The Board and management of Newington Housing Association wish to invite suitably qualified individuals / organisations to provide a proposal and quotation to facilitate the development of a new 3-year Strategic Plan (April 2023 – March 2026) for the organization, which will build on our previous strategic plans. This Strategy will guide the work of NHA with a clarity of purpose through the next phase

Terms of Reference

The strategic planning process should include the following:

  • A review of the previous Strategic Plan, incorporating the conclusions and learning within the new plan.
  • A review and independent analysis of a recent Tenants Satisfaction Survey and how the findings influence the new Strategy.
  • A high-level review and renewal of the Vision, Mission, and Values of the organisation
  • Facilitate through co-design an appropriate consultation process with our Board, management, staff, tenants, and key stakeholders such as the Tenants Forum members in the development of the plan and to foster ownership of the plan.
  • A process that will include a PESTLE analysis i.e., an analysis of macro environmental factors that influence the context of our work, including political, economic, societal, technological and environmental factors.
  • Develop a participative process to devise clear goals with objectives for the Newington Housing Association for 2023/2026, identifying delivery mechanisms, resources, timescales, and performance indicators.
  • Facilitate an internal process that explores organisational cohesion. This should explore operational models and approaches that will maximise inter-departmental cohesion and operational effectiveness.
  • Produce a ‘corporate’ summary version of the plan targeted at key stakeholders and the public.
  • Produce a detailed 12-month operational plan for year 1, this should be based on the SMART model, be clear and concise and will help to shape the operational functionality of NHA in the time ahead.


Tenders should be submitted to by 12:00pm (noon) on Friday, 8th July 2022.

A panel of Newington Housing Association representatives (including our Chief Executive) will decide on the successful proposal during week commencing 18th July 2022, via a scoring matrix.

The successful individual/organisation should be available to commence work on week commencing Monday, 22nd August 2022 and be available to engage with Newington Housing Association’ Chief Executive to establish a project schedule to include the following key areas

  • Initial meeting and co design of the consultation process
  • Desk review of all existing information/ data
  • Consultation process
  • Presentation of initial findings and direction of travel
  • Strategic planning sessions
  • Interim report
  • Final report

 A final draft report will be required by Newington Housing Association by Friday, 17th February 2023.

 Selection Criteria

Tenders will be selected for their ability to demonstrate a high quality and professional approach that offers value for money to NHA. You should highlight your suitability to fulfil the brief using examples of contracts/roles you have worked on over the last five years.

 Pass or Fail Criteria

Failure to meet the below criteria will result in a proposal not proceeding to scoring:

  • Demonstration of knowledge and experience of delivering strategic and business planning within the VCSE sector, using specific examples from within the past 5 years.
  • Confirmation of capacity to deliver the work over the specified timeframe, and to work with NHA on an agreed schedule.

Scoring Criteria

The successful applicant will be selected on their ability to demonstrate their experience in delivering Strategic and Business planning to Charities and Social Enterprises. You should provide in your tender response evidence of dates and levels of experience, and of whom you have provided this support to.

The Selection Panel will assess your tender response on the following:

Criteria                                                                                                                                         Score

Previous Experience                                                                                                                              20%

Evidence that the tenderer can fulfil all actions contained in the terms of reference       20%

Approach and Delivery                                                                                                                         40%

Cost                                                                                                                                                            20%

 Conditions of Tender

  1. NHA reserves the right not to award a contract if no proposal is deemed to be suitable.
  2. NHA requires that all contracted parties treat all information provided pursuant to this invitation to tender in strict confidence.
  3. Information supplied by tenderers will be treated as contractually binding. However, NHA reserves the right to seek clarification of any such information.
  4. All material gathered and all outputs arising out of the proposed contract will remain the sole property of the NHA. Tenderers must agree to this condition in their proposals. All information and knowledge acquired during the review will be treated as confidential and should not be divulged to any unauthorised person or used for any purpose whatsoever without the prior approval of Supporting Communities.
  5. NHA will ensure that the final report gives due credit to the consultant(s), textual and editorial work undertaken in its preparation. Any subsequent use of the material shall also give due credit.
  6. Tenders that are delivered late will not be considered.
  7. Any conflicts of interest involving a contractor (or contractors in the event of a group or consortium bid) must be fully disclosed to NHA particularly where there is a conflict of interest in relation to any recommendations or proposals put forward by the tenderer.
  8. NHA will not be liable for any costs incurred in the preparation of the tender.
  9. Payment for all services covered by this Invitation to tender will be in lieu of appropriate invoices. Invoicing arrangements will be agreed with the successful supplier(s).
  10. Payment of all services covered by this invitation to tender will be on the basis of the agreed contract price, completion of agreed stages of the work plan and upon the submission of the appropriate invoices.
  11. NHA will own the completed report and will retain copyright. NHA will retain the right to publish as deemed appropriate. The tenderer(s) will be acknowledged in the inside cover of the publication.

Submitting Tender

  • Tenders should be submitted by email to to arrive no later than 12:00pm (noon) on Friday, 8th July 2022.
  • All information provided to NHA in response to this request will be treated in strict confidence


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