Computer Contract Improves Service, Generates Savings

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VICTORIA - 06 Dec 2004: -- Standardized computer technology and better technical support highlight the benefits B.C. will receive from the contract signed with IBM Canada to deliver and improve corporate IT services, Management Services Minister Joyce Murray and Greg Gulyas, vice president, IBM Global Services, Canada announced today.

"This project is about better service for British Columbians. It will keep government's computer operations up-to-date and running in a smooth, businesslike manner," said Murray. "It gives us a standardized approach to IT support by using the technological expertise for which IBM is recognized worldwide."

The 10-year, $300 million agreement is one of several key projects that will use the private sector to transform and improve government's service delivery when it makes business sense to do so. As well, the Province will realize financial benefits in the range of $80 million over the life of the contract.

Over the past several years, government has outsourced mainframe support services to IBM. In some cases, contractors have also supplied workstation support. Under the new contract, IBM Canada, supported by its subsidiary ISM Canada, will deliver IT support services that include hardware supply, installation, maintenance and replacement, helpdesk and on-site support, and desktop software and hardware management.

Two subcontractors, Tecnet and Microserve, both established B.C. companies, will provide field support and asset management as part of the agreement. All service providers will adhere to B.C. statutes and regulations related to the protection of privacy and personal information.

Current employees have been offered jobs with ISM Canada and will have a wider range of career development opportunities with the new company. The BCGEU will represent the bargaining unit employees of ISM Canada. These employees will receive comparable compensation and benefits to those currently offered by the government.

"IBM Canada is committed to providing IT services that enhance productivity and draw upon IBM's extensive resources to enable our customers to focus on their business," said Gulyas. "Our IT solution for the Province of British Columbia is designed to provide faster, standardized helpdesk and IT services support and generate savings from cost-effective, managed desktop operations."


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