Third Time Lucky for Amazon Web Services
Having not been on the list of approved services during the first and second iterations of the G-Cloud it would appear that Amazon Web Services (AWS) are definitely going to be included the third time around.
Problems With Contracts
The absence of cloud giants AWS from the second launch in October did raise a few eyebrows and there are some conflicting reports as to why that happened. The official line from Denise McDonagh, head of the G Cloud programme, was that they ran out of time. It had been widely anticipated that AWS would be included in the list of G Cloud II services, but McDonagh stated at the time that there were problems with their contract, and in particular the terms and conditions of their rights to audit US data centres.
On Going Discussions
Speaking about the plans to include AWS in the next iteration of G Cloud, McDonagh said, “We don’t have Amazon on just now – reason is we ran out of time, but that’s the beauty of G-Cloud. We are still in discussions with Amazon about how they get on framework 3.” McDonagh went to explain the pace of change that was anticipated with the G Cloud programme. “Unlike other procurement [frameworks], if you missed [it], that was you for two to three years; with G-Cloud we can do the next three to four months.”
Large Proportion of SMEs
When G-Cloud II launched in October it offered a total of 3,185 services across 458 different suppliers. At the time many of the initial contract lengths were extended for to up to an extra two years. The fact that 343 of the contracts on the cloud went to small and medium enterprises gives a clear indication that it is becoming easier for smaller businesses to compete for government contracts.
Cabinet Office Minister Francis Maude stated that the progress was part of a planned renovation for the service. He explained. “It will continue the transformation in how the public sector buys, manages and delivers IT services, and how suppliers work with government, driving greater efficiency and savings for the taxpayer.”
The inclusion in the G Could catalogue is only part of the progress that is being sought after by AWS. To achieve accreditation across all government services the provider will need to hit all of the required standards on integrity, availability of information and confidentiality. It is only when they achieve Impact Level certification from the Pan Government Accreditation Service that they will be able to fully operate within the sector.
Commitment to Open Source
One company that has been included on G Could II is the open source product supplier, Sirius. The company which offer managed software services, systems integration and strategic consultancy, feel that their presence illustrates the government’s commitment to open source products. Chief Executive, Mark Taylor, stated, “This really is a first! The myth that ‘you can’t get support for open source’ is dead and now it’s time to lay to rest the ogre of procurement,”
Courtesy: Cloud E-Procurement solutions