The government has urged G-Cloud suppliers not to get too hung up on being top of the Digital Marketplace search rankings as it unveils plans to change the way the system works.
For the next iteration of the framework, G-Cloud 6, the government is overhauling the way suppliers input information about their offerings to make it clearer to buyers what their kit does.
It admitted that at the moment, suppliers are too concerned with appearing top on search results at the expense of offering coherent descriptions to suppliers.
"No matter how much we improve the search technology, some service descriptions make it very hard for buyers to understand what a service does and therefore how relevant it is to their requirements," said service manager for the Government Digital Service Ivanka Majic.
As a result, from now on, suppliers will be asked only to provide a short description of their service as well as a short list of features and benefits. Marketing material can be used but on a designated supplier page where G-Cloud said it will be "more usefully housed".
G-Cloud insisted that the order in which suppliers appear on search results is irrelevant when it comes to public sector procurement.
"Buying in government and the wider public sector is not like buying a new TV on Amazon," Majic said.
"It never will be. As a consumer searching for a TV on Amazon, the top results are likely to draw most of my interest – especially if there are thousands to choose from – but it isn't necessarily a given that they are the best TV for me.
"As a public servant, the order of the results is not relevant. If they all meet my requirements, I am obliged to go through them one by one and explain each rejection.
"I invite you to think less about being at the top and more about being the last one left after the elimination round."
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