Council quartet pursues shared ICT infrastructure

Summary:Wellington City Council, Regional Council, Upper Hutt and Porirua advance plans for shared ICT infrastructure.

Four councils in the region of New Zealand's capital, Wellington, have gone to tender for a shared ICT infrastructure platform excluding enterprise software.

The new platform will deliver "standard commodity ICT infrastructure" including data centres and storage, servers, data and voice networks, telephony services, desktops and an ICT service desk.

The councils, which collectively have budgets of NZ$900 million, say responses to the tender will help to develop the shared infrastructure business case.

Channa Jayasinha, programme owner, says the councils are keen to see if there are innovative ways to provide improved services more efficiently.

“We believe our organisations and customers would benefit from having more responsive, flexible and reliable ICT infrastructure and have come together to explore the pros and cons of a joint approach.”

However, the tender notes that one or more councils could opt not to participate, others could opt to join and the scope of the tender could be affected by changes in government procurement policy or a political reorganisation of councils in the region.

Last year, the Local Government Commission considered a major amalgamation proposal affecting nine of the regional councils.

Another initiative , called the Odyssey Programme and initially led led by Wellington City Council, is addressing amalgamation at the enterprise software level.

Six other councils in the region are not currently participating in the shared infrastructure project.

"Dependant on the outcome of the business case and transition, other councils in the region may determine that they will participate in the Shared Service Organisation (SSO) and transition their ICT infrastructure services increasing the scale of the service requirements," the tender says.

"It may also occur that a council decides not to participate and so the scale of requirements may decrease. Should this situation arise, the resultant impact on the services, pricing and the contract will be agreed between the Service Provider(s) and the SSO."

Suppliers have until 15 August to respond to the RFP.

Topics: Data Centers, Government, New Zealand


Rob O'Neill is a writer for CBS Interactive based in Auckland, New Zealand covering business and enterprise technology for ZDNet. He has previously worked for IDG, The Sydney Morning Herald and Melbourne's The Age as well as various business titles, most recently editing the Business Sunday section of New Zealand's weekly national news... Full Bio

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