Why agencies must use cloud services


Cabinet’s Cloud First policy requires agencies to adopt cloud services in preference to traditional IT systems because they are more cost effective, agile, are generally more secure, and provide greater choice.

Cabinet requires agencies to adopt cloud services

Cabinet requires agencies to:

  • adopt cloud services in preference to traditional IT systems 
  • make adoption decisions on a case-by-case basis following a risk assessment 
  • only store data classified as RESTRICTED or below in a cloud service, whether it is hosted onshore or offshore

Why Cloud First?

The Cloud First policy enables agencies to better take advantage of emerging technologies to drive innovation and deliver greater value, as described in the Government ICT Strategy.

The key benefits of cloud services for the Government are:

  • more cost-effective IT services
  • increased agility from quicker deployment times
  • greater choice
  • improved security.

Agencies have also highlighted other key drivers for adopting cloud services including resilience, and, in the October 2016 Agency Survey, mobility and collaboration.

Office productivity services

Recognising the increased maturity of agencies, and cloud service providers’ capabilities and understanding of government requirements, restrictions on the use of offshore-hosted office productivity services were removed in July 2016, provided agencies comply with the security requirements for using these services.


Page last updated: 15/02/2017