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£2 billion big data spending notice from Cabinet Office


Mark Chillingworth


The Cabinet Office has issued a £2 billion contract notice via the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) on plans to create a big data and analytics procurement framework.

Issued on 4 November 2021, the it identifies the rising need for data analytics within the UK public sector, and says the framework will standardise-off the-shelf analytics application purchasing.

Data and analytics is business-critical and a core business function, the contract notice states, adding that the Covid-19 pandemic heightened the prominence of data in government.

The notice was published soon after the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) announced the creation of a Chief Data Office to support the strategic use of data across DWP.

In the contract notice, CCS says it will put in place a pan- government collaborative agreement for data and analytics services that will be open for use by all central government departments, local authorities, health, police, fire brigades, educational bodies and the devolved administrations.

“It is intended that this commercial agreement will be the recommended vehicle for all big data and analytics required by UK central government departments,” the contract notice states. 

The framework will provide a range of pricing and purchasing options to the public sector with “agile” and competitive procurement that will support both niche projects through to full data services in large government organisations.

“The supplier ecosystem created by the framework is designed to grow internal capabilities and reduce recognised skills gaps, supporting the creation of intelligent BD&A functions across the UK Public Sector.”

Lot structure

Contracts will be issued in lots, with a maximum of one lot per provider. Suppliers tendering are expected to offer design, build and operate capabilities to six defined areas: advanced analytics, data management and acquisition; data risking; platform services; reports and dashboards as well as search and discovery.

The framework will have a duration of two years, with the option of two one-year extensions. All bids must adhere to the Cyber Essentials security certification.

Its terms include that commercial off-the-shelf data and analytics software must be available as either a cloud, on-premise or hybrid options and has to deliver one or more capabilities including big data management, data mining, risking and data science, machine learning and artificial intelligence, reporting and analytics as well as search and data discovery.

Image from iStock, monsitj

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