New agreement between UKCloud and CCS ensures more choice, higher assurance and better support for public sector organisations
London – 29th June 2020 – UKCloud, the multi-cloud experts dedicated to making transformation happen across UK public sector, has today announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Crown Commercial Service for the continued delivery of flexible and secure multi-cloud services underpinned by preferential commercial terms to ensure public sector organisations achieve maximum value-for-money.
UKCloud has supported the government’s Cloud First policy since the launch of the first G-Cloud framework and continues to focus on the challenges specific to the UK public sector as demonstrated by its recent State of Cloud Adoption report. It was invited to be part of the One Government Cloud Strategy review and represented the experience of supporting hundreds of digital transformation projects across the UK public sector and the unique perspective of a national cloud services provider alongside the leading global cloud services providers. UKCloud advocated the benefits of a diverse and competitive market which gives customers genuine options, sustainable innovation and optimum value-for-money. This agreement acknowledges that the need for public sector organisations to mitigate the risk of technology lock-in as well as the concentration risk of becoming overly dependent on a single provider can be facilitated by a multi-cloud approach and strategy.
Gareth Rhys Williams, the government’s Chief Commercial Officer, said: “This agreement with UKCloud builds on the government’s Cloud First policy and incorporates key elements of the recent One Government Cloud Strategy. It shows the government’s determination to adopt value for money technologies which improve services and ensure government departments and their staff have the digital tools they need, now and in the future.”
This MoU ensures that public sector organisations continue to have the benefit of choice and options of multi-cloud alongside the more proprietary options available from the global cloud providers. Multi-cloud extends the typical sole focus of newly developed cloud native applications to also support the modernisation of existing and legacy IT which represents a significant opportunity for organisations to save cost, increase resilience and become more agile. Multi-cloud enables organisations to mix and match the right cloud technologies, and the right cloud deployment options (i.e. public/private/hybrid/secure) to best suit diverse and heterogenous environments which commonly span on-premises and cloud.
This agreement between UKCloud and the government also signals renewed support for the government’s Crown Campus – secure UK datacentre facilities operated as a joint venture between Ark Data Centres and the UK government. UKCloud is the only cloud services provider involved in the One Government Cloud Strategy to operate within the Crown Campus which enables UKCloud to offer native connectivity to secure government networks and options for the delivery of multi-cloud services at higher classification levels. As part of this agreement, Crown Commercial Service has negotiated double-digit discounts related to UKCloud’s unique Tier 2 cloud hosting capability, branded UKCloudX.
Simon Tse, Chief Executive, CCS, said: “CCS provides commercial agreements which help organisations across the entire public sector save time and money on buying everyday goods and services. This agreement with UKCloud provides value for public sector organisations as they work to transform essential services for UK citizens.”
UKCloud has a long track record of delivering superior value-for-money for the benefit of UK taxpayers. It regularly reduces prices with each new iteration of the G-Cloud framework and aligns with Crown Commercial Service preferences for charging customers in Pounds Sterling, promoting price transparency via regular independent benchmarks and providing simplified pricing models that do not charge customers extra for data ingress, data egress or enterprise-grade support services which are particularly valuable to public sector organisations which lack the skills and capabilities to support their wholesale adoption of cloud services (the recent State of Cloud Adoption survey found that 83% of public sector respondents agreed that lack of skills and resources is impeding their adoption of cloud). This agreement formalises these commercial terms and ensures that UKCloud will implement future additional discounts as government spend on its multi-cloud services meets agreed thresholds.
In addition, this MoU recognises the Social Value of British technology companies in the public sector supply chain. UKCloud has pulled together a community of more than 300 GovTech providers, including most of the large Primes and System Integrators, but including a large number of UK small-to-medium sized enterprises creating Social Value through investment in jobs, skills and contributing to the Treasury directly and indirectly. The agreement formalises UKCloud’s commitment to pay all taxes due without the practice of tax avoidance.
Very topically, this agreement also includes enhanced commercial terms in support of the government’s COVID Secure intuitive and the Greening ICT agenda:
- Public sector organisations can be eligible for a significant discount on UKCloud’s recently launched Desktop-as-a-Service offering powered by VMware Horizon. COVID Secure recognises that social distancing measures will be required for some time and UKCloud’s service provides a safe, sustainable and affordable alternative to the interim solutions that many public sector organisations will have implemented in the early stages of lockdown.
- UKCloud will also provide free Disaster Recovery services to eligible organisations for a period of 3 months from the date of this agreement with Crown Commercial Service. This enables organisations to enhance the digital resilience of their IT environments which is increasingly vital to underpin the digital services that support the safe delivery of public services.
- UKCloud is unique as a cloud service provider in providing Carbon Neutral services for all of its customers. As part of this agreement with Crown Commercial Service, UKCloud will make an additional carbon offset to support the government’s Greening ICT agenda by effectively providing Carbon Negative cloud services and sustain the environmental benefits witnessed during the COVID-19 lockdown.
Simon Hansford, CEO of UKCloud said, “We have been delighted to work with Crown Commercial Service and the Cabinet Office to emphasise the need for choice, high assurance and expert support services to underpin the UK’s One Government Cloud Strategy. We have a demonstrable track record of delivering exceptional value-for-money to our public sector customers and this agreement will further encourage organisations of all shapes and sizes to recognize that a national multi-cloud provider like UKCloud is a safe, sustainable and affordable option to support and accelerate their digital transformation aspirations.”