Defence, Lockheed Martin deal sees 42 IT workers let go

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Defence, Lockheed Martin deal sees 42 IT workers let go

128 listed for voluntary redundancy.

The Department of Defence plans to let 128 IT workers go following the finalisation of a multi-million dollar contract with Lockheed Martin for centralised processing.

Shadow Defence Minister Stephen Conroy asked the Defence department during the most recent Senate estimates sessions for detail on any planned IT redundancies following the contract's signing and the subsequent shift in responsibility to the contractor.

In a response to the question, tabled on Friday [pdf], the Defence department revealed 128 workers had been identified for voluntary redundancy as part of the centralised processing business case.

So far, 42 IT workers have left the department, Defence revealed.

The Lockheed Martin deal, exclusively revealed by iTnews in May last year, is one of three consolidated outsourcing bundles the department is progressively market testing.

It is aimed at helping Defence to consolidate its data centre fleet from 280 to 11 domestic and three international facilities.

The competition had been narrowed to IBM and Lockheed Martin after third bidder HP exited the negotiations.

Defence’s procurement reform program is part of a long-term effort to save the department’s mammoth IT shop $1.9 billion.

The first of the three bundles - for terrestrial communications - was awarded to Telstra in April 2013 for $1.1 billion. Re-assessment of the third bundle, for distributed computing services, has been postponed until 2016.

The department was earlier this month ordered by the Government to undergo a wide-ranging overhaul of its approach to information technology as part of the Coalition's sweeping 'first principles' review.

The review found inadequate interoperability between Defence platforms - alongside a "costly and complex application landscape" - had impacted on operational effectiveness.

While Defence had attempted to make its CIO responsible for information management across Defence, in reality accountability has remained fragmented and unclear, the report found.

The agency should establish enterprise-wide frameworks for architecture standards and master data management; commence a "pragmatic implementation roadmap" for the standardisation of business and information processes; and ensure the project has adequate resourcing and funding, the review recommended.

CIO Peter Lawrence should lead the implementation of the transformation agenda and be the authority for all enterprise networks, reporting to the Associate Secretary, according to the review.

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