Bidding Blind on GCloud 8


GCloud 8 is open for applications! Why wouldn’t you want to join the prime contractual vehicle for the digitisation of public services?

To make it even sweeter it is unofficially a self qualifying framework so any evaluation is very light touch. If you consider yourself suitable for it, you almost certainly are.
The answer lies in the debate about bidding blind. Although public buyers would contest this and public procurement is certainly designed to be fair to all, there is research suggesting your chances of success in a tender are slim unless you have made at least some contact with the buyer. I certainly encourage my clients to build a relationship with the buying authority before they tender and switched on buyers will be open to this as part of their market engagement.
Following this argument, should you be making friends with the Crown Commercial Service who are running the tender for GCloud 8? Unfortunately not - as GCloud is both self selecting and open to all, it means that CCS aren’t really buyers in this case at all (unless they are buying a service from the GCloud themselves). The real buyers are the 1,103 public bodies who have bought from the GCloud so far.
And there is the rub - although the GCloud is easy to get onto, you are effectively bidding blind to those 1,103 buyers. So unless you are planning to put valuable effort into your marketing and who you want to engage with, I would think twice about the GCloud as it is unlikely that after getting your listing you will be able to sit back and watch the orders come in. As ever if it looks too good to be true, it is.