Commonwealth seeks savings with whole-of-government AWS deal

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The government has signed a new volume sourcing agreement with Amazon Web Services that it says will help slash the public sector’s cloud bill.

Use of the new agreement is mandatory for non-corporate Commonwealth entities, and corporate Commonwealth entities as well as state and territory agencies may be able to use the agreement on a case-by-case basis, according to guidance released by the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA).

“Government agencies regularly engage AWS services, each with separate contracts,” said minister for government services, Stuart Robert.

“The new arrangement represents an opportunity to provide cost reductions through efficiencies of scale.”

The government has signed a string of similar agreements with other tech vendors. In mid-2018 it signed a signed a whole-of-government purchasing deal withIBM worth an estimated $1 billion over its five-year lifespan. Canberra also has agreements with Microsoft, SAP and Concur.

“Over a number of years, aggregated procurement has allowed us to leverage the bulk-buying power of the government to negotiate consistent and improved terms and conditions,” Robert said.

The new agreement covers access to all AWS services in the cloud provider’s 66 Availability Zones under an agreed set of terms and conditions, as well as AWS Enterprise Support, AWS Training and AWS Professional Services.

“This agreement makes it easier for Australian government agencies to procure AWS services and speed time to value,” said Peter Moore, AWS’s Asia Pacific regional managing director, worldwide public sector.

“This new whole-of-government procurement agreement with the Commonwealth of Australia greatly simplifies and streamlines government technology procurement by providing government agencies with rapid access to the full portfolio of AWS services in any AWS Region at pre-agreed upon terms.”

“By eliminating barriers that have traditionally bogged down government technology procurement, the whole-of-government agreement enables agencies to invest more time and resources on their core missions, rather than on negotiating contracts,” Moore said.

In January, 42 of the cloud provider’s services delivered from its Sydney data centres were approved for use with classified data. The Australian Cyber Security Centre accepted AWS’s IRAP certification of the services for use with government data classified at the PROTECTED level.

Microsoft in 2018 received PROTECTED certification for a range of its Azure services.


Copyright © 2019 IDG Communications, Inc.

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