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HMRC first department to deploy G-Cloud services over PSN

HMRC first department to deploy G-Cloud services over PSN

Skyscape will provide centralised data storage to the department

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HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) will be the first government department to deploy G-Cloud services over the Public Services Network (PSN).

It has signed a contract with Skyscape for centralised data storage, which HMRC claims will provide cheaper, more secure and greener storage for the department.

Both the G-Cloud and the PSN are core to the government’s ICT strategy.

The government launched its CloudStore in February, which saw 257 suppliers signed up to the G-Cloud framework and catalogued within an online portal. It is hoped that by providing a tool that allows government departments to easily search for and buy cloud products from suppliers, and which also provides quality and price comparisons, government will be able to move away from large costly contracts and open up procurement to more SMEs.

The PSN, on the other hand, is a network of networks, which has been established to improve government communication links and cut costs.

PSN providers will connect to Direct Network Service Providers (DNSPs) via the Government Conveyance Network (GCN). The GCN is, in effect, the backbone to the PSN, acting as the gateway between the networks of different service providers.

“This change will save over £1 million a year in running costs and will increase reliability and security of HMRC’s internal IT services,” said HMRC's Chief Information Officer, Phil Pavitt.

He added: “The Skyscape contract is a major step for HMRC in moving away from traditional ways of working with large service providers. And it’s a great example of how we’re exploring smarter, more innovative solutions that make life simpler for us and help us provide a better deal for our customers.”

HMRC will begin moving data currently stored in local offices to the cloud storage between Autumn 2012 and Spring 2013.

This is the second contract win for Skyscape through the G-Cloud that has been revealed this week, where Government Digital Service has penned a deal with the company to provide infrastructure-as-a-service to host the much anticipated GOV.UK website.

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  • Andrew Carr It is encouraging to see that HMRC has become thefirst Government department to use G-Cloud to procure centralised data storage andto hear confirmation that the CloudStore is starting to make money Howeverthe jury remains out on the long-term success both of the CloudStore and ofG-Cloud The Governments stated objective for 50 of new government IT spending to move to cloudcomputing services by 2015 still looks a long way awayThetruth is widespread adoption is not going to happen overnight It will requirea huge shift in cultural patterns and requirements to facilitate the move froman ownership to a rental model As we have seen with other technologies andbusiness models over the years the Government will need to adjust its approachto match the new framework and ways of selecting and purchasing cloud servicesFurthermorethe roll-out of G-Cloud and the CloudStore still does not address theunderlying issue of Big Data This new plethora of services is bringing withit even more digital data that needs to be intelligently converted intomeaningful information so that decisions can be made quickly and effectivelyOnly then will the public sector be able to start reaping the true benefits ofthe cloud services availableAndrew Carr CEO Bull UK amp Ireland
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