The Government department said that 458 suppliers were now offering anti-spam, simulation and training, and other services available for procurement through the Government's 'CloudStore'.
It is the second "G-Cloud supplier framework" announced by the Government. The system allows public sector bodies to gain access to services being offered by the listed suppliers over the period of a year. It said that the number of suppliers, 75% of which are small or medium-sized enterprises, had nearly doubled from the number listed in the initial G-Cloud supplier framework that has been in existence since February.
"This second G-Cloud procurement builds on the success of the first," the Cabinet Office said in a statement. "It will continue the transformation in how the public sector buys, manages and delivers IT services, and how suppliers work with government, driving greater efficiency and savings for the taxpayer."
"Since February, public sector organisations have been able to purchase a range of the best IT services off the shelf from the Government’s CloudStore on a 'pay-as-you-go' basis, rather than having to develop their own systems. This model means the government can use what it wants, when it wants it, and save money by avoiding duplication of services that cannot be shared. It avoids the Government being locked into long-term contracts," it added.
Public sector organisations have so far purchased IT services on 99 occasions through the CloudStore, spending more than £2.2 million in total. Of this total, 70% of the money was spent on services offered by SMEs, the Cabinet Office said.
"The high representation of SMEs on both G-Cloud frameworks and in purchases from CloudStore are positive signs that government is moving away from dependence on a small number of large suppliers for IT services," G-Cloud programme director Denise McDonagh said. "It also demonstrates growing support for the G-Cloud concept. We are creating a truly competitive and diverse marketplace that encourages service providers to improve the quality and value of the solutions they offer, reducing the cost to taxpayers and suppliers, who also benefit from the speed and ease of procurement that G-Cloud offers."
The G-Cloud network was set up by the Government to "substantially reduce the cost of communication services across UK Government and enable new, joined-up and shared public services for the benefit of citizens," according to the Cabinet Office.