Top End reseller Computers Support and Maintenance (CSM) has won a significant tender worth $7.83 million with the Northern Territory Government to consolidate the Territory's four existing e-mail programs across the one messaging and groupware solution.
CSM outbid Compaq and IBM Global Services for the outsourcing contract, which will see CSM roll out, service and support a Lotus Notes e-mail system and eMAG groupware solution to the Government's 11,000-strong user base.
The Government was unhappy with the pricing options presented by the other tenders. David Knowles, CSM's managing director, said the Government chose his organisation because it was "the cheapest and the best".
Knowles, who also happens to be the president of the NT Information Industry Association, was enthusiastic about the message the deal sends out to the IT industry.
"We've been a Lotus partner for some time," he said. "The most important thing about this deal is that it recognises we have the required skill sets and capabilities. It's just a fantastic contract."
The NT Government has already outsourced nearly 60 per cent of its IT needs, and is looking to outsource the remainder of its service delivery roles. The Northern Territory's Communications Minister, Daryl Manzie, congratulated CSM's appointment and urged other local channel organisations to follow suit.
"The prime reason to outsource the Government's considerable IT requirements is to develop the Territory's capacity to participate in the world's fastest-growing service industry," Manzie said.
"We will not be contracting to one service provider, as has occurred in other places, and work will be packaged appropriately and let out using normal government procurement processes so that we can effectively share the work around."
The facilities management and rollout of the deal will be done in stages, according to Knowles, with Y2K compliancy issues to be addressed first. The project is set for completion by December 2000.