RailCorp NSW has decided to outsource components of its information and communications technology operations to vendor Fujitsu, officials said late this afternoon.
In a statement issued to ZDNet Australia, RailCorp said Fujitsu will assume responsibility for desktop support, service desk, server management and data centre operations from January 2007.
Fujitsu is believed to have tipped out IBM to secure the deal. RailCorp was formed about two and a half years ago after the government combined the old State Rail Authority with the greater metropolitan functions of Rail Infrastructure Corporation (RIC) to create a new body. The organisation describes itself as "a state-owned corporation that has as its main focus the provision of a safe, clean and reliable passenger rail network throughout NSW".
"The appointment of Fujitsu is intended to provide RailCorp with several benefits, including the creation of a more reliable computing environment, improving service levels, increasing information security and lowering overall ICT costs," a RailCorp spokesperson said via e-mail.
"RailCorp will be working with Fujitsu to transition responsibility for these areas over the next five months," the spokesperson said.
RailCorp officials said the contract -- signed on 8 August -- will run for at least three years, with options to extend depending on the vendor's performance.
An official said there would be no forced redundancies as a result of the deal, with assistance provided to affected staff to transition to the vendor or elsewhere within RailCorp or the public service. All those employees had been briefed on the deal, the official said.
He was unable to comment on the value of the deal.
RailCorp chief information officer (CIO) Vicki Coleman told ZDNet Australia last month the rail network was considering outsourcing those components of its ICT operations it regarded as "non-core" and "commodity offerings" in the marketplace.