UKCloud Celebrates its First Anniversary and an Award-Winning Year

ukcloud-blog-cupcakes

Reflecting on a busy year packed with innovation, expansion, diversification, and recognition

Founded in 2011, as Skyscape, we rebranded to UKCloud a year ago today. And what a year it’s been!

We like to think of ourselves as a bit different; by choosing to provide a set of true public cloud services single market – the UK public sector – we’ve been able to out-compete others to prove that specialists who really understand their market and the needs of their customers can provide better value than global generalists. By being dedicated to helping our customers gain value from the agility and cost savings of using a sovereign, assured, cloud platform, we’ve enjoyed significant success.

As an early innovator in the G-Cloud market we won many of the exemplar projects that laid the foundation for a wave of cloud adoption and early transformation across the UK public sector –
something that gained the UK recognition from the United Nations as the number one e-government in the world. The lessons learned in this initial adoption phase and the savings made that are now being reinvested in further cloud adoption and innovation, have all ultimately benefitted UK taxpayers, citizens and businesses as they have enabled public sector organisations to provide better services through technology – delivering “more for less”.

We have also built on this early experience, and in the last year we’ve continued to innovate and refine our services with a wealth of new offerings, but also capitalise on our growing scale and increasing efficiency to pass savings back on to our customers in a rapid set of cost reductions. Indeed, over the last five years the price of our cloud storage offering has fallen by 95% and many of our other primary services by as much as 50%.

On the innovation front, we’ve not only continued to refresh our technology estate in order to maintain market-leading performance (it is three times faster than Azure and 20% faster than AWS), but also extended the breadth and choice of services and platforms that we offer. Our platform supports both cloud native and enterprise applications – based on VMware, OpenStack and Oracle stacks as well as CloudFoundry and OpenShift environments for container management.

Customer excellence is at the heart of our approach; public cloud includes self-provisioning and self-service, yet many cloud providers leave you to it. We provide all these features, but also offer a FREE Technical Account Manager to help you every step of the way. We proactively poll our clients for ideas and wishes for service improvements, and our UKCloud Ideas initiative enables customers to vote on ideas and drive product improvements across the service. This has facilitated more than 40 feature improvements this year across our service catalogue from changes to the customer portal to product specific improvements. These changes have helped drive our impressive business growth and client retention, meaning that the customer is placed right at the heart of our technical and product development.

Our impressive (and growing) market share on G-Cloud has been driven by a succession of contract extensions with existing customers as well as contact wins with new customers. At the same time, we have also recruited a host of new business partners to join our specialist ecosystem and launched a new division to focus specifically on the health sector – UKCloud Health.

Our focus on customer excellence is not only borne out in our client satisfaction and retention, but in further awards voted for by our peers and clients – including the global OpenStack SuperUser Award and 2017 Digital Leaders SME of the Year.

UKCloud is not only the fastest growing tech firm in the UK (#1 in the Sunday Times Hiscox TechTrack ranking), but we have been judged as the Best G-Cloud Provider and Best Overall Cloud Service Provider (2017 UK Cloud Awards) and received The Queen’s Award for Enterprise – the highest accolade for outstanding achievement in innovation.

As a UK champion, we feel very strongly that we need to give back and share our success. Not only have we passed savings on to our customers, we’ve also given back to the community though a programme of staff volunteering, fundraising and charitable donations –we donated a total of £230K to charities such as The Princes Trust, BBC Children in Need, Great Ormond Street Hospital and a number of others in the last year.

Reflecting on such enormous success as we celebrate our first anniversary as UKCloud, it would be all too easy to be complacent, but our team (of highly skilled staff as well as an ecosystem of business partners) recognise that the pace of change is, if anything, accelerating and if the UK’s cloud champion is to maintain its impressive track record, then it cannot afford to rest on its laurels. Thankfully we are more than up for the challenge!

Author: Bill Mew