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19 July 2022:  The New South Wales Government has named five more Cloud service providers to its Cloud purchasing arrangements (CPA) panel. These include AUCloud, Network Synergy, Rackspace, Sliced Tech and Tata Consultancy Services, which brings the total number of panellists to 17. The CPA panel was established in mid 2020 to accredit vendors in the Infrastructure-as-a-Service (IaaS) and Platform-as-a-Service (PaaS) industries to better manage procurement and supply chain.

Why it’s Important

Vendors that meet public agencies’ regulatory compliance means that their services strictly observe critical best practices in multiple areas of procedures, policies and designs. In the case of NSW’s CAP contract, it requires vendors to provide value-adds, and agile and streamlined procurement of services. 

Since it is more difficult to obtain government accreditation owing to practices that need to be demonstrated to conform to stringent standards, this also benefits other private organisations looking for Cloud services that offer reliability and security.

Who’s impacted

  • CISO
  • Security teams
  • ICT strategy leads
  • Infrastructure architects

What’s Next?

Public sector organisations may need to consider government panel accreditation when selecting Cloud vendors: it makes procurement simpler and faster. However, rather than demanding accreditation as a blanket requirement, it should be considered on an as-needed basis. Some Cloud projects, especially those relating to R&D and ‘skunk works’ may be kept under discretionary spending limits, and thus offer greater flexibility in vendors. In these cases, longer-term procurement considerations must be factored.

In all cases, Cloud procurement should be supported by a robust Cloud cost management strategy. Because it is easier and faster to acquire Cloud resources from a panel, it is important to detect, monitor and govern Cloud resource costs closely, and via a Cloud Centre of Excellence (CoE).

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