After scaling back on its previous mobile services panel in 2012, the Australian government has gone to tender for a new, expanded panel that must also offer tablet devices for government employees.
The previous panel, the Telecommunications Commodities, Carriage, and Associated Services Panel, was established in 2011, and was awarded over 129 contracts worth over AU$46 million. The government initially scaled back on the panel in mid-2012, because it wasn't offering value for money through volume discounts, according to the government.
Following the publication of the Australian Public Service Mobile Roadmap (PDF) earlier this year, which requires government agencies to actively use mobile technology for service delivery and to improve productivity, the government decided to establish a new panel to meet agency needs to meet the road map.
According to the tender documents, the panel would be required to offer the network services, devices including handsets and tablets, as well as offer enterprise mobility management, and wireless broadband services. Members of the existing panel, which includes Telstra, Optus, and TransACT, will need to respond to the new request for tender, and the government stated that members of the existing desktop panel, which covers mobile tablet suppliers, will also need to respond to the tender request.
The request for tender is open until December 23, 2013, and the panel is expected to be up and running by March 2014 for a period of three years, with the option to extend for an additional two years.