CIO of the London Borough of Camden John Jackson has claimed the G-Cloud procurement framework is overly complicated and much needs to be done before the Government Digital Service (GDS) can call it a success.
Last month, GDS COO Tony Singleton called for supporters of the framework to speak out following research that found only 10% of UK councils have purchased services from the CloudStore.
Despite Singleton claiming he would be finding out how to communicate better with customers, Camden’s CIO is now saying G-Cloud is still foreign to many local authorities.
“There are some challenges with [the framework] and one of them is the complexity of it. It is quite difficult to understand what you’re buying or how you are paying for it,” Jackson claimed in an interview with Computing.
Besides this, he believes the maximum contract period of two years is too short and said a major app is going to have a lifespan of at least five years, creating problems if different contractors have to be hired through its duration.
Terms and conditions are also an issue, according to Jackson. To support his point, he used the example of a council who pulled out of a deal via G-Cloud because the terms “weren’t right for them.”
The framework currently uses individual suppliers’ terms and conditions rather than having one unified set applicable to all providers available on the system.
Jackson claims the local authorities must abide by their own terms and conditions first and foremost and companies do not always accommodate these.