AGIMO details Gershon axe work

Summary:Yesterday at CeBIT, Australian Government Information Management Office division manager for business improvement John Sheridan outlined exactly how much the Federal Government hoped to save on its business as usual information technology spend over the next few years.

The Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) yesterday outlined exactly how much the Federal Government hoped to save on its business as usual information technology spend over the next few years as a result of implementing Sir Peter Gershon's recommendations.

(Wall of axes image by mccready, CC2.0)

Displaying what he called the "show me the money slide" at a speech at the CeBIT trade fair yesterday, AGIMO division manager for business improvement John Sheridan said his office expected savings amounts for the years from 2009/2010 until 2012/2013 were (rounded) $109 million, $298 million, $303 million and $306 million respectively for a total of around $1 billion.

AGIMO calculated those figures by taking the ratios that had been agreed upon by the government and applying them to the agencies — 15 per cent of the 2007/2008 spend for larger agencies and 7.5 per cent for smaller ones.

Sheridan said that Sir Peter Gershon's estimate for the first year had sat higher, at $140 million, but that AGIMO had received a lower total because of more exact information.

"This improvement in knowledge is the result of the rigorous analysis conducted by agencies in conjunction with Finance (AGIMO's ICT review teams) in Phase One. During this work, data quality issues have been addressed and a better distinction between [business as usual] and non-BAU expenditure has been developed — leading to a revised target," he said.

According to Sheridan, the savings that had already been achieved via Phase One had a reaching effect over the next years, with $109 million to be saved in 2009/2010, $139.2 million the year after that, $152.5 million the next year and $168.5 million in 2012/2013, making for a total of $568.2 million.

The savings had been achieved via such measures as re-negotiating contracts, rationalisation of applications management expenditure, reduction in contractor numbers, consolidation of servers and server virtualisation and better ICT management, according to Sheridan.

The reductions in contractor numbers, which some agencies had undertaken, had on its own saved around $17 million in 2009/2010, according to Sheridan. An additional $7 million was saved by transferring over 200 contractor positions to Australian public service positions.

The telecommunications industry was likely to shortly see a similar deal, Sheridan said, since AGIMO was set to advise the government soon on the results of its telecommunications scoping study.

Topics: Government, Government : AU

About

Suzanne Tindal cut her teeth at ZDNet.com.au as the site's telecommunications reporter, a role that saw her break some of the biggest stories associated with the National Broadband Network process. She then turned her attention to all matters in government and corporate ICT circles. Now she's taking on the whole gamut as news editor for t... Full Bio

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