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CCS plays down G-Cloud rethink but mulls how to bring forward G10 OJEU

David Bicknell Published 16 January 2018

Crown Commercial Service says it has been “overwhelmed” with G10 feedback and says it will share its revised thinking as part of a SaaS discovery webinar


The Crown Commercial Service (CCS) has downplayed a suggestion that it could change its immediate thinking on extending G-Cloud 9 for up to 12 months.

But it has recently indicated that it may be in the process of at least revising its thinking on the publication of an Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) notice for G-Cloud 10.

Last week a notice about the postponement of a webinar on Digital Future - Cloud Software application categorisation carried a note saying, “It is with regret, that we are postponing Wednesday’s webinar.  We will reschedule this for approximately two weeks’ time (details to be confirmed).” 

It continued, “We have been overwhelmed with the feedback we have received for G10. As a result we will share our revised current thinking around how we can bring forward the OJEU for G10, as part of the SaaS discovery webinar.”

The suggestion seems to indicate that CCS is at least considering changing its mind on the timing of G-Cloud 10, having earlier said that as part of a CCS and Government Digital Service (GDS) strategy, it had decided to extend G-Cloud 9 for a period of up to 12 months.

CCS had previously said that G-Cloud 9 will expire on or before May 21 2019, though it did add the rider that “extensions may be terminated earlier if functionality is available, meaning that these dates may be brought forward.”

A CCS spokesperson played down any immediate change in approach, saying, “At the moment there's nothing new to say. I would just say that CCS plans to update the market in due course. I will let you know of any progress.”

Cloud specialists said they were committed to working with CCS and others to improve G-Cloud for both supplier and buyer.

Nicky Stewart, commercial director for UKCloud, said, “Dan Saxby has always been clear that the one year extension was not the default for G10, and that it could be delayed for up to a year.

“When we can expect to see a contract notice for G10 really depends on how many of the improvements they have been working on get picked up for G10, and how far they have got with them. Easter is certainly realistic, and we and many other G-Cloud suppliers would welcome an early contract notice, as many have been making heavy investments in new services, which need a route to market!”

Another cloud advocate said, “There are different layers of problem and on balance I prefer the early G10 route. The resource required to run an iteration will drain the available resource on major improvements to the framework. But those iterations bring about (a) new suppliers, (b) new products from existing suppliers, (c) incremental improvements to the framework and (d) a massive injection of education and communication which gets more and more suppliers competent to supply.”

Not all suppliers necessarily want an early G-Cloud 10. dxw managing director Harry Metcalfe, discussing his conversations with GDS and CCS following dxw’s recent survey over the quality of Digital Outcomes and Specialists (DOS) framework opportunities for SMEs, suggested that perhaps more time is needed for CCS to facilitate better integration between G-Cloud and DOS. He indicated that he would be prepared to wait longer for G-Cloud 10 if CCS needed more time to be able to beef up G-Cloud and improve its integration with DOS. DOS 2 is due to expire on or before January 27 2019.  

Peter Middleton, director of Cloudline said, “What we need is a clear published strategy and plan setting out the improvements that CCS and GDS will deliver, such as better integration between the frameworks and the Digital Marketplace, eBilling, etc. Putting G10 on ice whilst these are worked out is not a sensible approach – unless you keep a marketplace open to new products and services, how can it grow, improve and remain competitive? It can’t. Many of the vendors that were expecting to join G10 have had to put their own plans on ice, which is costly.”

He added, “Changes to the way the platform operates can and should be done iteratively in parallel and in support of efforts to grow and improve the service offerings, across the range of frameworks available to deliver the best way to enable buyers to buy, and for this to be done against a clear roadmap of what platform features/integrations are coming and why.”





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