The G-Cloud framework (short for Government Cloud), was introduced by the UK Government in 2012 to promote adoption of cloud computing amongst public sector organisations. The framework represents an agreement between government and suppliers and exists to make purchasing cloud solutions faster and cheaper then entering individual procurement contracts.
All public sector organisations, including agencies and arm’s length bodies, can view available cloud solutions through a front-end catalogue- the Digital Marketplace, which is managed by the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) to improve the government’s procurement.
For companies to sell their services through the Digital Marketplace, they have to apply to be part of the G-Cloud framework and provide an off-the-shelf solution which fits into one of the listed Lots.
What’s G-Cloud 13 and what’s new?
The framework has now reached its 13th iteration- G-Cloud 13. Previously, there were 3 Lots, which suppliers can apply for depending on the solutions they provide:
- Cloud Hosting (IaaS & PaaS): cloud platform or infrastructure, which allows buyers to deploy, manage and run software, and provision and use processing, storage or networking resources
- Cloud Software (SaaS): applications which are accessed over the internet and hosted in the cloud
- Cloud Support: to help set up and maintain cloud software or hosting services, e.g. migration planning, set-up, quality assurance and performance testing, training, and ongoing support.
G-Cloud 13 sees the introduction of a new lot, for Cloud Support Services for larger, more complex requirements. G-Cloud 13 will also introduce improved terms and conditions and greater inclusion for the provision of day rate cloud support services.
This Lot differs as it will sit outside of the Digital Marketplace, separate from Lots 1-3. It is also much more challenging for suppliers to become accredited, following a competitive application process and a limited number of places available.
Who’s eligible to join the framework?
G-Cloud is purely for cloud-based, off-the-shelf solutions which fit into one of the Lots. Most suppliers will also have security certifications such as Cyber Essentials and ISO 27001 in order to abide by industry regulations, however this isn’t required – you can filter on this to find the best suited supplier for your needs, so you might want to bear this in mind when searching. Learn more about buying through G-Cloud.
How does a buyer award a contract?
If, after putting in all their requirements, only one supplier comes up, the buyer can direct award. If there are multiple potential suppliers, the buyer may select on lowest price, or using the M.E.A.T (most economically advantageous tender) process.
This involves evaluating criteria such as running costs, quality of service, after-sales support, technical assistance, identity fit and so on.
Once the contract has been awarded, the supplier and buyer complete a call-off contract including any specific terms the parties have agreed to.
We’re delighted to have been awarded a place on the G-Cloud 13 framework, enabling us to offer our cloud services to public sector organisations. Learn more about Advanced IT Services or contact us below to discuss your requirements.