Microsoft and government agency the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) have signed a new Azure Pricing Arrangement (APA) that will enable public sector organisations to use the Microsoft Azure cloud. The move will provide service discounts and benefits such as digital training to organisations and their employees.
According to a recent Microsoft news story, the APA is now available to all eligible Digital Transformation Arrangement public sector organisations and allows them to access these benefits for up to three years.
“This agreement shows the government’s determination to adopt value for money technologies which improve services and ensure government departments and their staff have the digital tools they need, now and in the future,” said Gareth Williams, the government’s chief commercial officer.
The new APA covers solutions such as Azure Cognitive Services and artificial intelligence, Azure Analytics, Azure Synapse, Azure Arc and Azure Hybrid Benefits, which enable users to create their own solutions, improve cloud services management and smooth the transition from legacy systems to the cloud. It also allows public sector organisations and their staff to access Azure training courses, including Microsoft FastTrack, Azure Migration Program and Technical Skills for Business.
“The Azure cloud platform offers the security, scalability and resilience to help the public sector provide the services that citizens need in a cost-effective way,” said said Chris Perkins, public sector sales manager at Microsoft UK. “Today’s agreement caters for public sector organisations, regardless of where they are on their cloud journey, and Microsoft is looking forward to working with our customers to accelerate and unlock the benefits of moving to Azure.”
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