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How GovMarket helps to create economic opportunity in Germany with digital sovereignty

February 16, 2024
Dr. Grazia Frontoso

Head of Customer Engineering Sovereignty Specialists, EMEA North, Google Cloud

Melanie Peterson

Head of Marketing and Communications, GovMarket

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In Germany, public procurement can be a highly complex and time-consuming process. More than 30,000 procurement entities vie for contracts across a fragmented regulatory landscape, with different rules applying at the federal, state, and municipal levels. Since public procurement procedures are often time-consuming, particularly for large or high-value contracts, small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) often can’t compete for public contracts.

While procurement itself is supported by digital procurement platforms (such as eVergabe) planning and processes during tendering and contract execution are largely not standardized, require many manual steps, and are not provided by universal digital marketplaces as in other European countries. There are also challenges related to lack of training and development to upskill procurement officials, who are increasingly required to have a wide range of skills, including legal and technical expertise. Not surprisingly, there’s a shortage of qualified procurement professionals in Germany.

As a result, on average it takes German government agencies 22 months to purchase technology. This lack of timely access to new technology can be a major impediment to innovation in the public sector, and led to the creation of GovMarket, a new digital marketplace that can help drive innovation in procurement for public institutions in Germany.

A solution for a more efficient procurement process

GovMarket is a PwC and Public Germany joint venture aimed at fostering collaboration between government agencies and technology companies that specialize in the public sector. The platform’s goal is to streamline the public procurement process, making it easier for businesses to compete for public contracts. GovMarket also offers a range of tools and services to help businesses comply with public procurement regulations.

GovMarket has a strong focus on data sovereignty and protection. All data stored on the platform is encrypted and securely stored in Germany. GovMarket is also committed to complying with all applicable data protection laws and regulations.

A key enabler for sovereignty solutions

GovMarket’s success lies in its ability to address both the technological and cultural challenges of public procurement in Germany. Technologically, GovMarket provides an online platform that is easy to use and that meets the needs of both public buyers and suppliers.

The mission of GovMarket is to transform the way that procurement law is applied in Germany, moving away from an error-prone, paper-based process to an efficient digital and easily accessible process. This process can allow public organizations to use the platform as a reliable market research source designed to support compliance and curated solutions.

GovMarket chose to run on T-Systems Sovereign Cloud, powered by Google Cloud, in part because it can use Google Cloud's innovative data residency and access controls to help ensure that GovMarket customer data remains under the control of their respective governments (directly or through trusted regional partners). It also can help adhere to strict data privacy regulations. This commitment to data sovereignty is further reinforced by Google Cloud's security measures, which include:

  • Data encryption at rest and in transit: Google Cloud employs industry-leading encryption techniques to protect data from unauthorized access, both when it's stored and when it's being transmitted.
  • Zero Trust-based access controls: Google Cloud is enforcing granular access controls to help ensure that only authorized personnel can access sensitive data (such as only EU based personnel).
  • Threat detection and prevention: Google Cloud's security infrastructure continuously monitors for and mitigates threats, helping keep data safe from evolving cyberattacks.

In addition to data sovereignty and security, GovMarket uses other benefits provided by the Sovereign Cloud. The platform's scalability and performance can help GovMarket to meet the demands of its growing customer base, while its cost-effectiveness has helped GovMarket optimize its IT expenditures.

GovMarket has the potential to revolutionize public procurement in Germany. By addressing the challenges of complexity, time-consuming, and lack of digitization processes, GovMarket can make it easier for start-ups and SMEs to compete for public contracts. The platform's focus on sovereignty and data protection can help build trust and confidence among public buyers and suppliers. GovMarket is available today to help unlock the potential of public procurement in Germany.

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