The Victorian Government has set up a new PC purchasing panel aimed at shaving up to $20 million from its ICT budget over the next five years.
The panel will do this by moving to a mandatory whole-of government purchasing scheme in an effort to achieve greater efficiencies and bang for buck.
Previously, the Victorian Government used open standing offer arrangements to procure ICT products for its nine discrete departments.
According to a spokesperson from the Premier’s office, it was clear that the OSOA model could not deliver the degree of procurement aggregation possible in via an aggregate procurement scheme.
Environmental concerns will also be taken into consideration under the new panel with requirements for the recycling or reuse of notebooks and PCs procured under the panel.
“While pricing is very important, it is not the only factor government considered in selecting the best value-for-money solutions for its PC and notebook supply panel, the spokesperson said.
“Environmentally friendly disposal of PC equipment has also been identified as being of particular concern because of the variety of potentially damaging materials used in manufacture.”
Two local ICT providers, Optima and IPEX have been appointed to the panel along with multinationals Acer, HP, Dell and Toshiba.
Victorian ICT Minister Marsha Thomson said these providers had been appointed based on their ability to provide the same level of service government agencies in regional, as well as metropolitan, areas.
“We will be carefully monitoring service delivery to regions, especially the on-site warranty services, which will be provided by the end of the next business day and attract equal rates for regional and metropolitan services,” she said. “Many of these services will be delivered by local businesses.”
The premier’s Office spokesperson said IT support in regional and rural Victoria had been variable in the past. The new contract would aim to deliver consistently good service across Victoria via use of third party contractors.
Optima MD Cornell Ung said the move toward a central procurement process, and inclusion on the panel, was a major opportunity for the PC vendor.
“Desktop management is still a tough business but we think we can extend more of our products and service offering into the Victorian Government now,” he said.
“Providing any kind of service costs money but having the environmental disposal clause means we can be much closer to the customer.”
Both Ung and the Premier’s Office spokesperson agreed that the use of environmental clauses was becoming increasingly common in government contracts.
“Low cost has been and will remain a major concern in Government procurement,” the spokesperson said.
“But environmental concerns will increasingly influence Government procurement decisions into the future.”
Vic Gov moves to whole-of-government procurement
By Tim Lohman on Apr 4, 2006 1:22PM