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Scottish government launches £30m Cloud Services Framework with a 50% SME supplier list

Framework has gone live with 14 suppliers making the cut, who will be on hand to provide public sector organisations in Scotland with access to public, private and hybrid cloud services, as well as colocation capacity

The Scottish government has set its £30m cloud procurement framework live, as part of its push to provide public sector organisations and charities operating in Scotland with access to IT resources that are locally hosted, sustainable and provided by small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs).

Of the 14 providers that have secured a spot on the two-year Cloud Services Framework, 50% are SMEs, the majority host their data within Scotland and operate datacentres with a power usage effectiveness (PUE) rating of below 1.6, the government has confirmed.

The framework is designed to provide Scottish public sector organisations with a means to access public, private and hybrid cloud services, as well as migration support and colocation capacity.

It replaces the Scottish government’s four-year Hosting Services Framework, and is designed so that participants can procure a range of these services under a single contract, which is not possible in other similar frameworks, such as G-Cloud.  

Its launch also marks a continuation of the Scottish government’s push to encourage public sector organisations to consolidate their datacentres and improve the efficiency of their IT estates, as was detailed in its 2014 Data Hosting and Datacentre Strategy.

Aberdeen-based cloud and colocation provider Brightsolid is among the suppliers to make the cut, having previously delivered similar services to the Scottish public sector through the now-expired Hosting Services Framework.

CEO Elaine Maddison said the firm is looking forward to forging even closer ties with Scottish public sector organisations and supporting them through their digital transformation projects.

“The strong portfolio of cloud services we offer customers provides them with future-proof infrastructures to support digital transformation while considering the long-term financial implications – a testament to the feedback we have since received,” said Maddison.

“Often, there are more hurdles for public sector organisations to overcome than their private equivalent – whether restricted by the supply chain, cost or security. Therefore, our ability to offer a variety of cloud solutions, including hybrid cloud, fits extremely well within this sector, as it offers a balance of performance and cost optimisation.”

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G-Cloud framework stalwart UKCloud is also featured among the new framework’s suppliers. Its CEO, Simon Hansford, said the firm is looking forward to building on the success it has had elsewhere in the public sector. 

“As a UK sovereign SME, UKCloud has supported more than 250 digital transformation projects across the public sector via various Crown Commercial Service frameworks, including Technology Services 2 and G-Cloud – directly and via our large ecosystem of partners,” said Hansford.

“Our aim is to help the Scottish public sector realise Scotland’s full potential in a digital world by supporting both the digital strategy for Scotland and the Data Hosting and Datacentre Strategy set within the Scottish government’s Digital Scotland directorate.’’

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