G-Cloud iii adds identity services, BPO and others

The third version of G-Cloud adds a host of new categories and a larger potential spend for public-sector bodies, less than a year since the original G-Cloud went live.

The third G-Cloud framework has been announced with four new supplier categories and an increased procurement limit, less than a year after the pan-government public cloud service went live

G-Cloud is the government's initative to encourage greater use of cloud software and services among government IT departments, with a view to making public sector IT cheaper and more flexible. It incorporates CloudStore, an online marketplace where public sector IT buyers can purchase cloud services.

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The new categories being introduced to G-Cloud iii include: identity services, service integration and management, software support and business process management. 

G-Cloud iii will also see the potential amount of money spent on the G-Cloud framework increased from £100m to £200m, according to a G-Cloud blog post published on Friday. 

As with previous versions of G-Cloud, the length of frameworks will last for 12 months with the potential for buyers to sign contracts of up to 24 months.

Meanwhile, the G-Cloud team claim they have improved the invitation to tender (ITT) application process and revised its terms and conditions.

"Following our public discussion on the revised terms and conditions in October 2012, we are planning to make these a standardised set going forward, including improved wording in the data protection clauses to ensure that they more fully take into account the complexities of cloud computing," the blog post says.

There will also be a new ITT submission form, which will be pre-populated with data on G-Cloud ii suppliers in order to make it easier for them to continue listing their services with little or no change. The government hopes the improved form will also make it easier for new suppliers to add their services.

The deadline for the submission of tenders is set for 21 February, while the framework agreements for G-Cloud iii are expected to commence at the end of March this year.

Existing G-Cloud ii suppliers will be given the option to remain on the second framework until it is finished on 27 October, 2013, or roll over onto G-Cloud iii. 

G-Cloud iii aims to build on the success of its predecessor, G-Cloud ii, which was launched in May last year and  more than doubled the amount of suppliers in the G-Cloud store  by October to 458. The first G-Cloud framework launched in February last year with 257 GCHQ-vetted suppliers.