Dell, Lenovo first on new NSW hardware panel

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Dell, Lenovo first on new NSW hardware panel

US dollar to drive up govt PC prices.

Dell and Lenovo have been appointed the first vendors to sell to NSW Government agencies under the state’s new IT hardware procurement arrangement.

Procurement through the panel will be between $92 million and $93 million per annum, according to 2011-12 figures from the Department of Finance and Service’s (DFS) annual report.

The new panel covers only end-user devices such as PCs, laptops, monitors and thin clients. Such products came within the scope of the former whole-of-government hardware panel.

The government plans to bring storage, server systems and virtualisation technologies – currently supplied under state contract 2846 – within the scope of the new hardware agreement before April 2014.

In the longer term the new umbrella contract will also include the procurement of printers and imaging devices, worth roughly $40 million per year.

Dell and Lenovo will be joined by more suppliers as contract negotiations are finalised.

The new arrangement reflects a change in approach to coordinated procurement from the NSW Government.

Rather than best-price bidding processes of the past which produce a fixed panel of accredited suppliers, vendors need only to commit to a maximum price benchmark in order to be included under the new scheme. The new agreement allows suppliers to be selected at any time during the contract.

DFS has warned buyers that the ceiling prices for the various units covered by the arrangement will rise from 1 August due to movements in the US dollar.

“Due to recent movements since prices were negotiated that adjustment is likely to represent a 10 percent or greater increase in price for standard desktops and laptops,” the ProcurePoint website advised.

The NSW Government has elected to move away from a fixed supplier panel, where a limited list of companies are assured access to agency buyers in exchange for discounted rates, despite the proclaimed success of the model at the federal level.

Australian Government CTO John Sheridan said in June federal agencies were now paying 50 percent below the national average for desktop hardware. Prior to the establishment of the government's whole-of-government hardware panel in 2010 agencies had been paying 55 percent above national average. 

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