Services listed on the sixth generation of the public sector G-Cloud have gone live on the government’s new Digital Marketplace.
The contract notice for G-Cloud 6 went live in December and the government claims applications were up by 15 percent over G-Cloud 5. In total 1,852 suppliers, 87 percent of which are SMBs, and 19,966 services are included in the new framework.
One of the main differences between G-Cloud 6 and its predecessors is that suppliers no longer have free-reign to describe their services in a bid to cut down on jargon, ambiguous language and keyword spamming.
Public sector organisations can now commission cloud services from both G-Cloud 5 and G-Cloud 6, but those from G-Cloud 4 are no longer available.
G-Cloud was launched in 2012 by the outgoing Cabinet Office minister Francis Maude as a way for public-sector bodies to acquire commodity services online. As of November 2014, £393.7 million worth of sales, excluding VAT, have been generated via the platform, nearly half of which has gone to SMBs. Central government accounts for four fifths of this total, with the wider public sector picking up the remainder.
The Digital Marketplace itself went live in November with the intention of making it clearer, simpler and faster for the public sector to purchase digital products and services and to make it easier for SMBs to enter the supply chain. The government has pledged to listen to user feedback to help it better serve customers and suppliers.
“As usual, we’re continually improving the features and functionalities of the Digital Marketplace for both buyers and suppliers,” it said. “We’re currently focused on developing our search capabilities along with the categorisation and filtering of services; these will all work together to help buyers find what they need.”
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