Guidance

Buying and selling on the Digital Marketplace

Guidance for buyers and suppliers of cloud technology, digital outcomes, digital specialists, user research participants and labs.

The Digital Marketplace is an online service for public sector organisations to find people and technology for digital projects.

Suppliers must apply to sell services. Any public sector organisation, including agencies and arm’s length bodies, can buy using the Digital Marketplace.

Services and frameworks on the Digital Marketplace

Frameworks are agreements between the government and suppliers to supply certain types of services under specific terms.

Buyers and suppliers still need to sign a contract (a ‘Call-Off Contract’) for each service bought through a framework.

These services are on the Digital Marketplace:

  • cloud software and services ( the ‘G-Cloud’ framework)
  • digital outcomes, digital specialists and user research services (the ‘Digital Outcomes and Specialists’ framework)
  • physical data centre space (the ‘Crown Hosting Data Centres’ framework)

Suppliers cannot apply to join the Crown Hosting Data Centres framework

Sell services on the Digital Marketplace

The process is different for each framework.

To find out more, read the:

You can only apply when an Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) contract notice has been issued. At this point, suppliers will have 4 to 6 weeks to apply to the framework.

On average, a contract notice will be issued every:

  • 9 to 18 months for Digital Outcomes and Specialists
  • 12 months for G-Cloud

Buy services through the Digital Marketplace

Any public sector organisation, including agencies and arm’s length bodies, can buy using the Digital Marketplace.

You can create an account and buy at any time.

The buying process is different depending on what services you’re buying.

Read the guidance for more information:

Working out what services you need

Working with both procurement and technical professionals can help you decide on the high-level requirements and how long your project will take.

You should consider:

  • the funds you have available to buy the services
  • the technical and procurement requirements of the project
  • the selection criteria on which your choice will be based

Identify what the ‘must-have’ requirements are and what the ‘wants’ are. Read the government’s Service Design Manual to help you describe your needs.

Getting funding approval

The Government Digital Service (GDS) manages central government’s digital and IT spend controls.

This means that all funding requests for new or redesigned digital services need formal approval by GDS before they can go ahead. You’ll also need to have approval from within your organisation.

You must make your decision-making process auditable when you buy services on the Digital Marketplace.

Published 27 June 2019