The Crown Commercial Service (CCS) and Microsoft have signed a new Azure Pricing Arrangement (APA) that will allow public sector organisations to leverage the Microsoft Azure Cloud. This move will let organisations and their employees access a wide range of benefits such as service discounts and advantages.
The APA is now available to all eligible Digital Transformation Arrangement public sector organisations. It will help them access these benefits for up to three years.
“This agreement shows the government’s determination to adopt value for money technologies which improve services and ensure government departments and their staff have the digital tools they need, now and in the future,” said Gareth Williams, the government’s chief commercial officer.
The new APA includes solutions such as Azure Analytics, Azure Synapse, Azure Arc, Azure Cognitive Services and artificial intelligence, and Azure Hybrid Benefits. This will allow users to create their own solutions, smoothen the transition from legacy systems to the cloud, and improve cloud services management. Public sector organisations and their staff will also be able to access Azure training courses, including Technical Skills for Business, Azure Migration Program, and Microsoft FastTrack.
Simon Tse, Chief Executive of the Crown Commercial Service (CCS), the UK’s biggest public procurement organisation, said: “CCS provides commercial agreements which help organisations across the entire public sector save time and money on buying everyday goods and services. This agreement with Microsoft, is yet another example of our commitment to achieving outstanding commercial value for our customers, as they work to deliver essential services for UK citizens.”
Chris Perkins, General Manager of Public Sector Sales at Microsoft UK, said: “Microsoft is committed to working with the government to help support the One Government Cloud Strategy. The Azure cloud platform offers the security, scalability and resilience to help the public sector provide the services that citizens need in a cost-effective way. Today’s agreement caters for public sector organisations, regardless of where they are on their cloud journey, and Microsoft is looking forward to working with our customers to accelerate and unlock the benefits of moving to Azure.”