The current Brexit debate brings the differences between the cultural outlook in Britain with that of its continental neighbours to the fore.  One aspect is the respective attitude to regulation and accreditation, but for a largely unregulated sector like cloud what does this matter?  Well, maybe it should.

At a European level there are regulations such as the EU Data Protection Directive, which will apply to the whole of Europe including the UK if we want to provide cross-border services (whether we leave the EU or not).

According to 451 Research, the most competitive prices for cloud services globally are found in the US. On average Europeans pay between 7 and 19% more, depending on the complexity of the application, but deals are available to those that shop around.

The most competitive prices for cloud services globally are found in the US

There was found to be a ‘protection premium’ for hosting services in-country or in-region, rather than using the cheaper option of US services. This reflected the extra investment needed by European cloud users as result of three pressures: the need to meet local regulations, the need to boost performance by bringing apps closer to users and the use of local customer service.

If we drill down to a national level we can see that even within Europe prices and regulations differ. Recently Compare the Cloud interviewed the director general of ANSSI – the people behind the French National Digital Security Strategy.

“ANSSI … runs a national accreditation and certification program. It publishes a list of rules for companies (including those in the traditional IT hosting and cloud sectors), and then conducts independent evaluation on their performance before providing the appropriate certification. Almost unique to France, Guillaume Poupard admits that this process isn’t necessarily cheap for the firms that take part, but he argues that it is definitely worthwhile – not only for the firms themselves that need a set of standards to apply and benefit from the ability to show that they are up to standard, but also to their clients who have the peace of mind knowing that they are working with a firm that has met such high standards.”

Meanwhile the UK market is not only more mature, but also less regulated providing a far more cost-competitive environment. This may mean better value, but how can clients have the same peace of mind as their French cousins that they are working with a firm that are reputable and meet high standards of service?

How can clients have the same peace of mind as their French cousins that they are working with a firm that are reputable and meet high standards of service?

Well, there are some firms that are accredited by the UK government – those that wish to tender for government business and are part of the UK G-Cloud scheme.

The UK government initiated the G-Cloud program in 2012 to deliver computing based capability using cloud and it has been hugely successful, providing benefits to both customers and suppliers alike with over £900m worth of sales having now taken place via the G-Cloud platform since its launch.
With the G-Cloud framework there is a Digital Marketplace that is provided by the Crown Commercial Service (CCS), an organisation working to save money for the public sector and the taxpayer. The CCS acts on behalf of the Crown to drive savings for the taxpayer, ensure quality of service and improve procurement efficiency. Central government departments, local government, health, education, not-for-profit and devolved administrations can all use CCS’ procurement services.

Let the government check out suppliers for you!

G-Cloud has substantial benefits for both sides. For vendors the benefit is clear – to be awarded as an official supplier for G-Cloud demonstrates that the company has met the standards set out in the G-Cloud framework. Furthermore, it also opens up access to new opportunities to supply the public sector in the UK. Likewise it brings recognition to the brand and further emphasises the firm’s position as a reputable provider of digital services.

G-Cloud gives quick and easy access to a roster of certified suppliers that have been rigorously assessed

For the public sector organisations G-Cloud gives quick and easy access to a roster of approved and certified suppliers that have been rigorously assessed, cutting down on the time needed to research and find such vendors in the marketplace. This provides companies with a head start in finding the cloud services that will best address their business and technical needs.

Even if you aren’t a public sector organisation, if you are looking to source a cloud provider and want to find a reputable one, then why not start your search with those that have been awarded a place on the G-Cloud framework agreement.

G-Cloud provides companies with a head start in finding the cloud services that will best address their business and technical needs

Of course you still need to ensure that their platform, service level agreements, native management tools and support teams can deliver the solutions that best address your business goals as well as your security and compliance requirements. Nevertheless you have a ready-prepared list of firms that are reputable and meet high standards of service.

One firm that meets all the standards set out in the G-Cloud framework and also has a reputation for local service excellence is Veber.  Why not check us out – contact us on 020 3468 7000.

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