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CONNECTICUT STATE EMPLOYEES
REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL
CONSULTING SERVICES FOR
EMPLOYEE BENEFIT STATEMENTS
I. STATEMENT OF OBJECTIVES
The State of Connecticut, acting through the Connecticut State Employees Retirement Commission, is seeking to obtain a contract with an organization to provide on an annual basis over a four year period personal statements of benefits for State Employees Retirement System members. The statements must present information that is clear, concise, up-to-date and useful for members' future retirement planning. The contract period will commence on or about April 1, 2005 and expire on March 31, 2009.
II. BACKGROUND INFORMATION
The Connecticut State Employees Retirement System (CSERS) is a defined benefit plan funded on an actuarial basis serving approximately 48,000 active, 1750 inactive vested and 37,000 retired members in accordance with the provisions of the Connecticut General Statutes (CGS), Chapter 66. CSERS is a three-tier plan with four separate plan calculation routines plus three hazardous duty calculations.
The Office of the State Comptroller's Retirement & Benefit Services Division (Division) administers the provisions of CGS, Chapter 66 under the direction of a single board of trustees known as the Connecticut State Employees Retirement Commission (Commission).
The Division maintains an in-house data base system with information on members' retirement plan membership and beneficiaries, employment records, earnings and applicable contributions, and additional service credit which is used in the calculation and processing of monthly retirement benefits.
Some of the services provided to members by the Division are pre-retirement planning workshops, individual benefit counseling sessions, summary plan description booklets and, pursuant to Chapter 66 of the CGS, annual personal statements of benefits.
A sample of the current laser printed booklet design of the CSERS Personal Statement of Benefits is enclosed as "Exhibit A".
III. SCOPE OF SERVICES
The contractor will be expected to perform the following services:
A. Design, produce and distribute a personal statement of benefits annually for all active and inactive, vested CSERS members which must include at a minimum the following:
B. Confer with Division staff at the Division's offices to develop the preliminary and final design and content of the statements and furnish up to ten production meeting manuals.
C. Assist in the development of work plans and schedules for the statement design and production.
D. Draft statement text regarding general benefit provisions and any other desirable general and variable text.
E. Provide data processing services as follows:
F. Prepare and coordinate all artwork, forms and envelopes.
G. Coordinate forms finishing and distribution.
H. Provide appropriate management reports.
IV. LETTER OF INTENT REQUIREMENT
A letter of intent is required. The purpose of this letter is to indicate the contractor's intention to respond to this RFP. The letter of intent must be received at the offices of the Retirement & Benefit Services Division by 4:30 p.m. on January 14, 2005. Proposals will not be accepted if this requirement has not been met.
In this letter the contractor must provide an email address for the communication of information about the RFP. As indicated in Section V, PROPOSAL SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS, of this RFP, contractors should submit questions regarding the RFP by email. Answers to questions submitted as well as other information related to the contractor selection process will be provided to contractors at the email address provided in the letter of intent.
V. PROPOSAL SUBMISSION REQUIREMENTS
A. Each proposal must include the following:
A title page indicating the date, subject, name of the contractor, central office address and the local office address - if a local office will be performing the contracted services - and the address, telephone number, name and title of the contractor's contact person for the purpose of clarifying any information submitted.
A general description of the contractor's organization, including the legal structure (corporation, partnership, franchise, etc.), the number of professional and support staff employed and the primary business functions (benefits consulting, actuarial consulting, asset management, insurance provider, etc.).
An outline of the contractor's background and experience in producing innovative benefit statements for large organizations, including references from large organizations and public sector organizations that the contractor has assisted in the production of personal statements of benefits.
Identification of staff who specialize in the production of the non-personalized portion of the statement including production of the printing of text, covers, envelopes, reply cards or forms, assembly, sequence checking, shipping, etc.
Description of on-site computer system contractor will be using.
Description of alternative backup for all equipment which may be used by contractor.
Description of all services to be subcontracted, if any, and how contractor controls cost, quality, timeliness and confidentiality for these services.
A recommended workplan for the completion of the design and actual production of the statement.
Samples of the products to be provided by the contractor.
Detailed fee structure itemized by type of service, such as fees specifically for design, preparation of artwork and text, printing of the forms and personalized computer data, paper costs associated with sample statements, and the finishing process of statement production, assuming a quantity of 50,000. Cost per additional statement beyond specified count should also be included.
Fees proposed, whether fixed or variable, shall be deemed inclusive of all expenses and all cost estimates will be considered as "not to exceed" quotations.
Fee proposals should not include start-up costs.
The State of Connecticut is exempt from the payment excise, transportation, and sales tax imposed by the Federal Government and the State; accordingly, such taxes must not be reflected in the proposed price.
Disclose any current or past (within the last ten years) business relationships which may pose a conflict of interest.
Disclose any regulatory problems experienced in the past ten years.
The proposal must include a summary of the contractor's experience with Affirmative Action including a summary of the contractor's affirmative action plan and the contractor's affirmative action policy statement.
Regulations of Connecticut State Agencies Section 46a-68j-30(10) require agencies to consider the following factors when awarding a contract that is subject to contract compliance requirements:
A Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities "Notification to Bidders" and an "Employment Information Form" are attached, which should be read and completed by the contractor. (Attachment I)
Also attached is a Contract Compliance Requirement reporting form, which the contractor must complete and sign, which will be sent to the Commission on Human Rights and Opportunities by the awarding agency. (Attachment II)
B. An authorized agent for the contractor with authority to negotiate and contractually bind the contractor must sign the proposal; such individual's title, address, and telephone number must also be provided.
C. The contractor must submit one original, one unbound, plus eleven (11) copies of their proposal in a sealed envelope upon which a clear indication has been made of the RFP reference title and the date and time the proposal is submitted. The envelope should be delivered to:
D. Contractors who have questions regarding this RFP should submit them by email to the following address: email@example.com no later than 4:30 p.m. on Friday, January 18, 2005. Answers to questions will be transmitted by Friday, January 21, 2005. No phone calls will be accepted relative to this RFP.
E. Proposals must be received no later than 4:30 p.m. on February 18, 2005.
F. Some contractors may be asked to provide a presentation of their proposal to the Actuarial Subcommittee of the Commission. Such contractors will be notified by email to arrange the time and date for the presentation.
VI. SELECTION PROCESS AND SCHEDULE
Request for Proposal Questions and Response Phase
|December 30, 2004||Release of RFP by Commission|
|January 14, 2005||Letters of intent with contractor's email address due at Commission|
|January 18, 2005||Questions, if any, due at firstname.lastname@example.org|
|January 21, 2005||Division provides email response to questions received|
|February 18, 2005||Proposals due at Commission|
Proposal Review and Contractor Selection Schedule
|February 22, 2005 - February 25, 2005||Reading and Scoring of Proposals|
|by Screening Committee|
|February 28, 2005 - March 4, 2005||Finalist Interviews|
|March 11, 2005||Contractor Selection|
VII. EVALUATION OF PROPOSALS
Each proposal will be evaluated by a Screening Committee using the following criteria to determine which contractor is most capable of implementing the Commission's requirements:
VIII. TERMS AND CONDITIONS
Contractors responding to this RFP must be willing to adhere to the following conditions and must affirmatively state their adherence to these requirements with a transmittal letter appended to their proposal response.
IX. RIGHTS RESERVED TO THE STATE
The State reserves the right to award in part, to reject any and all proposals in whole or in part, to waive technical defects, irregularities and omissions if, in its judgment, the best interest of the State will be served.