Cisco UK & Ireland Blog

Spotting Multiple Clouds in the Public Sector

December 10, 2015

G-Cloud is a UK Government initiative to encourage the adoption of cloud services across the whole of the UK Public Sector. The aim is to simplify how the Public Sector buys and delivers services by creating a marketplace of pay-as-you-go commodity services that can be easily scaled up or down, based on changing needs.


The 7th iteration of the G-Cloud framework recently went live on the Digital Marketplace, which is a competitive marketplace of over 2,566 (89% SME’s) suppliers offering 22,080 cloud services. The framework has grown significantly since its launch in 2012 and the introduction of the ‘Cloud First’ policy in May 2013. In October 2015 total sales reached £856,737,760 (ex VAT) with 50% by value being awarded to SMEs. Central Government accounts for the largest share at 77% and 23% through the Wider Public Sector.

There has been much debate in the press about whether G-Cloud has been a success or not, but in my opinion, it has achieved a great deal for the Public Sector by delivering the benefits of cloud economics (easy in, easy out ‘pay as you go’), on-demand scale, choice of differentiated cloud services to suit user’s needs and it strongly supports the government’s SME business agenda, which has a target of 33% during 2015-16 and on-track to achieve it…

Congratulations to Cisco Powered Cloud Providers available on G-Cloud

Congratulations to all successful G-Cloud 7 suppliers and Cisco partners participating in the Cloud and Managed Services Programme (CMSP) offering Cisco Powered cloud services on the Digital Marketplace.

There are various benefits of using Cisco CMSP partners, as they must meet strict Cisco requirements to prove the ability to develop, deliver, manage, and support Cisco-based cloud and managed service solutions e.g. align well with ISO27001, ITIL Foundation processes and the UK Government’s Cloud Security Principles.

Cisco Powered cloud services are based on validated design architectures and rigorous certification with third-party audits, which ensures that providers deliver assured performance, security and availability.

Multi-cloud strategy gaining momentum

A multi-cloud approach is gaining momentum and there is recognition that a one size cloud model does not fit all to meet the needs of users and achieve successful business outcomes.

Successful G-Cloud suppliers offer a range of cloud services and deployment models with different levels of assurance to meet the security and business requirements of consumers. Each deployment model is associated with particular security characteristics and SLA’s that dictate which applications and services may run over them.

A multi-cloud strategy is the ideal choice, allowing the Public Sector to customise their deployments and maximise the value they see from their cloud investments. This approach will minimise the risk of widespread data loss or downtime due to a localised cloud service outage and it can avoid “proprietary vendor lock-in” by using different infrastructures to meet the diverse needs of the Public Sector.

Cisco has prepared a Cloud Spotter’s Guide for the UK Public Sector, which offers trusted advice, including the top ten buying criteria for cloud services. It will help public sector buyers to develop an appropriate cloud sourcing strategy and confidently select cloud services from approved suppliers on the G-Cloud 6 Framework, which meet both the security needs of end users and the requirements of the business.

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