So, what is G-Cloud?
The G-Cloud Framework was set up by the UK Government in order to standardise the terms and conditions between cloud hosting providers and public sector organisations, like local councils, the NHS and police force.
Launched in 2012 G-Cloud has been in operation for over five years, and has amassed thousands of certified suppliers with over ten thousand services on offer to public sector businesses, with more in the pipeline.
In those intervening five years, the government have moved to regularly modify and clarify the G-Cloud Framework, making it safer, more secure and simpler for everyone. Here’s what’s changed in G-Cloud 9:
- A unified framework: Ever since the release of G-Cloud, there have been two iterations of the G-Cloud Framework. That’s no longer the case with G-Cloud 9, as it replaces both 7 and 8, simplifying purchases.
- Greatly simplified structure: Many users found the previous structure wasn’t an accurate representation of the cloud tech environment. There are now three categories, called ‘Cloud hosting’, ‘Cloud software’ and ‘Cloud support’, with new descriptions that will help users understand which technology and support should be provided through G-Cloud.
There are also changes to the questions that each of the category providers are asked, alongside expanding the categorisation of services and granting suppliers the ability to maintain up-to-date descriptions of their services, thereby improving the quality of the Digital Marketplace.
- A new funding model: In response to the 2015/16 Government Spending Review, the CCS is rolling out a change to its funding model, increasing the management charge for G-Cloud 9 from 0.5% to 0.75%. This change affects all charges billed by the supplier to the buyer.
These new changes mean that G-Cloud suppliers, like ourselves, will have to resubmit their products and services, but it does mean that public sector businesses can buy in confidence, know their data is secure and their costs transparent.
BookingLive and G-Cloud 9.
You might be wondering though exactly why BookingLive needs to be G-Cloud 9 secure in the first place? After all, isn’t BookingLive’s online booking platform based on your own private server?
The simple answer is no. The reasons behind this are plentiful, running the gamut from greater ease for the customer to rapid updates and superior uptime. However, it also means that our software has to be G-Cloud 9 certified if we want to continue supporting our incredible public sector, clients. Thankfully, we’ve done just that.
Security first – always.
Our constant improvements to our secure cloud hosting service have meant that achieving G-Cloud 9 approval was a mere formality, thanks to our PCI compliant cloud hosting. Regular data backups and SSL enabled technology to enable superior security y and absolute piece of mind.
Indeed, unlike many of our competitors, every customer has their own database. What does this mean? If we only used one database it would mean that if someone got access to it, they would have access to all information stored on all sites. By ensuring that each site has its own database we can guarantee that it is impossible for a security breach on one site to gain access to another of our customer's data. And to further reduce the risk of hacking, we enable HTTPS as standard on every website.
As an additional added security measure, we never handle any payment details; instead, we hand over the customer to a registered, secure payment gateway like SagePay or PayPal. These companies then collect the payment information, encrypt it and then destroy it, once the transaction has been completed.
Whilst this security ensures that public sector business’ data remains absolutely secure, your business can benefit from it too. Data breaches cause untold financial and reputation damage to any business – damage which can be notoriously hard to recover from.
With BookingLive’s G-Cloud 9 accreditation, you can be certain that whether your data relates to Registrar or meeting room bookings treated treat with absolute sensitivity.
To learn more about BookingLive’s G-Cloud 9 certification or our superior security on our online booking system, speak to a member of our team today.