Second iteration of comms and networking procurement vehicle adds three new lots and more than doubles in value
Bidding has opened on the second iteration of the government’s Network Services framework.
Network Services 2 has added three new lots and comes with an estimated potential value of £5bn – more than double the £2bn price tag assigned to its predecessor.
The deal aims to allow central government agencies and the wider public sector to purchase a range of telecoms and connectivity services, including WiFi, voice, mobile, and cloud computing. It also covers the provision of infrastructure to support connections to the Health and Social Care Network.
The deal is split into 13 lots, the first 10 of which are more-or-less the same as the first iteration of Network Services: data access; local connectivity services; traditional telephony; inbound telephony; IP telephony; mobile voice and data; paging and alerting services; videoconferencing; audioconferencing; and unified communications.
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The final three lots of the incoming framework – which address, respectively, radio, security and surveillance, and contact centres – are included for the first time.
Having gone live in 2015 with 57 suppliers on board, the incumbent framework reaches the end of its four-year term on 26 July 2019. Network Services 2 is scheduled to go live about two weeks before this.
Bids for the new framework are open until the end of January, and the chosen suppliers will each be handed a four-year contract.
Before issuing a contract notice this week, Crown Commercial Service undertook “a major customer and supplier engagement phase” which included input from more than 100 tech firms, it said.
Ieuan Trigger, CCS category director for networks, said: “Network Services 2 is a flagship agreement for Crown Commercial Service, due not only to its financial scale, but also its ambition. This agreement has been designed collaboratively with customers, suppliers and industry bodies; it aims to be a catalyst which will drive transformation within government and the wider public sector.”