Defence making progress on ICT sourcing reform

The Department of Defence is to shortly conclude two major steps toward achieving the November 2009 Defence ICT Strategy recommendation to reform its approach to ICT sourcing.

A key component of that reform is a push toward fewer but more significant contracts based on deeper strategic relationships with sourcing partners. The push also sees Defence narrowing its suppliers down around five core ICT ‘bundles’.

In Defence documents, the Department said it was due to shortly conclude the sourcing of suppliers under the new arrangements for two of those bundles: Distributed Computing Central Services (DCCS) and Terrestrial Communications Support (TCS).

The TCS component sees Defence re-tendering its Defence Communications Network (DCN) Support contract with Telstra and gain new network equipment support services.

As part of that initiative, Defence said it would also look to move Level 2 Network Operations and Level 3 network Engineering functions to wither its Defence Central Computing Services (DCCS) or Terrestrial Communications Support (TCS) contracts.

Under the DCCS component, Defence is seeking to re-tender its current Kaz Group contract for Central ICT Infrastructure Support Services to Defence’s Restricted, Secret and Top Secret networks.

It is also looking to re-tender a separate KAZ Group contract for all levels of support to Navy through its Fleet Information System Support Office, and re-tender contracts with Telstra and Excelior for certain voice and mobile support services.

“As part of the Strategic Reform Program, Defence aims to work with the successful tenderer to reduce Defence’s level of workforce involvement with services delivery and shift to greater reliance on the successful tenderer and the services delivery solution it develops for Defence,” the documents read.

“Ultimately Defence aims to limit its service delivery contribution as far as possible to one of high level direction, priority setting and services quality assurance."

Defence added that overall, the reforms to ICT sourcing would help deliver a services delivery model that would meet its need for flexible, demand-driven services over a period of “significant change” in the Defence Information Environment.

The November Defence ICT Strategy 2009 paper also reconfirmed Defence’s commitment to building a new Defence Information Environment (DIE) by 2012 and claimed it would bring savings of $1.9 billion over 10 years with continuing savings of $250 million per annum.

Copyright © 2010 IDG Communications, Inc.

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