Defence IT job cuts to continue

The Australian Department of Defence has confirmed plans to continue cutting jobs as a result of a Lockheed Martin centralised processing contract.

The Australian Department of Defence has revealed that more IT jobs will go over the next few months as a result of the signing of a contract with Lockheed Martin for centralised processing services, worth close to AU$1 billion.

ZDNet first reported on Tuesday that the department had confirmed that 42 staff members have left since February, after Defence signed a contract with Lockheed Martin in May as part of its AU$1.9 billion IT reform to consolidate infrastructure and applications from 280 smaller datacentres into 11 domestic and three international facilities.

The department stated in response to a question on notice that 42 employees have been made redundant since February, all on a voluntary basis, but a total of 128 positions were identified in the business case to be made redundant as a result of the deal.

On Tuesday, the department confirmed to ZDNet that more jobs would go over the next few months, but would not be forced redundancies.

"Voluntary retrenchments commenced in February 2015, and will continue through until expected completion early in the next financial year," a spokesperson for the department said in a statement.

Jobs likely to go will be across mainframe, mid-range, storage, database, security, and datacentre services, the department added.

In June 2013, CIO Peter Lawrence said the consolidation of the department's infrastructure would make things simpler for the agency.

"Having all the processes in one place will centralise things. So it should make it easier in time to be able to actually manage both the applications and the infrastructure in a more centralised way, which will, over a period of time, make it easier to access common data," he said.

"Right now, when we want to upgrade an operating system on our servers, we have got to go to everywhere. We might have servers in every one of those 280 locations. It is a time-consuming and onerous task."