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Department of Health to be in Kahootz with its Arm’s Length Bodies

The Department of Health (DH) has selected the Kahootz cloud collaboration service from online collaboration specialist INOVEM Limited as part of a shared service programme that delivers more cost-effective ICT infrastructure and team working options for its staff, its Arm’s Length Bodies (ALBs) and Non-departmental Public Bodies (NDPBs).

The shared service agreement between Department of Health and INOVEM, effective from 5th May 2014 enables expansion of the Kahootz cloud collaboration service to organisations such as NHS England, NHS Health Research Authority, the Care Quality Commission and 20 other agencies and public bodies – potentially encompassing thousands of users in the future.

Under the G-Cloud call-off framework, DH will only pay for what it consumes, eliminating the need to purchase user licenses in advance of use, as in traditional government procurement. This more flexible approach will allow the Department and its partner agencies to scale usage both up and down, as and when required. The Kahootz Enterprise software will replace its legacy IBM Quickr software.

Bob Armstrong, DH’s Head of ICT Futures and Shared Services, stated: “Our Department is actively replacing legacy business systems in favour of more flexible Cloud-based shared services for departmental and partner operations. The acquisition of the Kahootz cloud collaboration service, via the G-Cloud CloudStore, will enable us to improve the way we securely share knowledge, collaborate on policy, consult with stakeholders and engage partners in our work.”.

We selected Kahootz Enterprise because it met our needs for an affordable, easy-to-use, agile collaboration platform that could be adapted by our personnel and partners to meet different use cases such as online project management, communities of interest, committees and policy development workgroups.”

To understand the DH staff and partners’ collaboration requirements, the Department’s evaluation team identified potential suppliers from the CloudStore before drawing up a short-list.

Bob Armstrong explained: “Our evaluation team was keen to assess the ‘art of the possible’ by examining modern cloud collaboration services. Following clarification of service capabilities, we eventually selected INOVEM, an innovative UK SME, which shows that the G-Cloud programme is providing public sector buyers with increased choice and access to a wider range of new, less traditional, suppliers.”

Stephen Allott, the government’s Crown Representative for Small and Medium Enterprises, said:  “SMEs are a key driver of economic growth and play an important role in helping us to get ahead in the global race.   Through our G-Cloud Framework the Government has opened up the market for cloud-service suppliers of all sizes in a significant way, helping SMEs win more government business. Sales have passed the £154m mark with SMEs winning 60%.”

INOVEM Sales & Marketing Director John Glover said, “We are excited to be working with the Department of Health to help their staff and partners find new ways of working using affordable, agile cloud technologies. With many legacy public sector ICT contracts coming to an end, the G-Cloud and the Government’s procurement reforms are providing new opportunities for inventive SMEs like us to provide proven, robust and scalable information sharing and collaboration services to the public sector. Winning major ICT programmes is part of our phased expansion plan over the next few years.”

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