2019 G-Cloud sales: £6.7m (1st in VAR 350)
All-time G-Cloud sales: £9.93m
All-time G-Cloud ranking: 135th overall (17th in VAR 350)
Largest G-Cloud client: MoD (£6.14m)
Representative: Joel Berwitz, digital solutions director
SBL was the top G-Cloud provider in our market last year, with revenues topping £6m. Would that surprise some people?
Outside of our customer base we've not done a great job of telling people how credible we are in our market. We have over 30 years of heritage in delivering technology expertise to public sector organisations and have outstanding capability in driving transformative services into some of the largest government departments in the UK. That's why we're the number 1 in the market for G-Cloud.
Do you think G-Cloud has achieved its original aims?
In most senses it's been a success. There is now a path to market for innovative, smaller partners who previously would have found it difficult to get on the radar. We believe that outside of Central Government there is more to do in order educate in the wider sectors - it's our role as suppliers on the framework to help those organisations understand the benefits of procurement in this way.
What's your top tip for budding G-Cloud suppliers?
Our approach, not just with G-Cloud but in general, is to keep things as simple as possible. There can be a tendency to want to cover as much information and detail as possible in the submissions. However, we're certain that the more succinct and concise you are with all benefits and features your organisation is trying to convey, the more engagement you will get from a potential buyer - especially with the increasing amounts of suppliers/services to choose from.
What is your biggest G-Cloud bugbear?
More people don't use it! I think there is a lot more we can do on the whole to educate buyers in the market around the benefits of G-Cloud - that can be said of all the stakeholders in the process. Whilst the numbers are growing, we have a real sense that there could be so much more advantage if more buyers were aware of the benefits.
Applications to G-Cloud 12 opened on 3 March. From a supplier standpoint, what's the biggest change from G-Cloud 11?
Service description documents have been made mandatory, including detailed descriptions, the disaster recovery involved, onboarding and offboarding, and technical specifications. This makes good sense as customers are a lot more inclined and confident in purchasing a service if a supplier has a service description. It also makes the procurement process quicker and more efficient, as buyers get the clarity on what they are buying from the supplier rather than a service description which is centrally mandated.
How could G-Cloud be improved?
As we move into the next decade, the responsibility of suppliers to government will increase around social and environmental factors. SBL are in the process of becoming a Certified B Corporation, ensuring that we drive these responsibilities into the core of our business. I'm sure that future iterations of G-Cloud will have mandatory requirements to ensure that the delivery of solutions and services stands up to these measures.
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