UK tech start-ups snubbed as government ‘locks down’ Microsoft – ‘Detrimental impact!’ | United Kingdom | New

Six government departments have awarded videoconferencing software contracts to Microsoft Teams without launching a tender process, responses to a series of Freedom of Information requests shared with Express.co.uk have revealed. The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, the Department of Culture, Media and Sport, the Department of International Trade, the Department of Transport, the Department of Health and Social Affairs and the Ministry Justice said they don’t have a bidding process for other videoconferences. services before the agreement with Microsoft is concluded.

Departmental responses to recent freedom of information requests have led some players in Britain’s tech sector to take aim at the government.

They also suggest that Microsoft has bundled software packages together and made it extremely expensive to remove Teams or integrate different systems.

An industry figurehead told Express.co.uk: “Put simply, Microsoft’s behavior is like having a guest, only to have them put locks on your cupboards and dictate your future. choice of tea and biscuits.

“For those of us who work in the UK tech sector, it is particularly worrying that our government finds itself locked into contracts with a multinational which are incredibly expensive to break.

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“This can have far-reaching and detrimental impacts on the ability of UK businesses to secure future agreements with departments.

“Our procurement processes must be transparent and robust, and must seek to make the most of our thriving and innovative local solutions.”

But Whitehall suggested many of the purchases were made because of certain requirements.

A government spokesperson said: “Most of the purchases made by departments were due to them having to increase their number of Microsoft Teams licenses.”

According to an article in the Mail on Sunday last December, a source said: “It looks like ‘NHSwashing’ for rival firms – gaining lucrative leverage over healthcare infrastructure under the guise of charity. “

They added: “Microsoft may have claimed to save the NHS millions of man-hours – but the price will be much higher later.

“Their license renewals will not only be incredibly expensive, but it will be too late to find a cheaper and frankly better system.”

Express.co.uk has approached Microsoft for comment.

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