The Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development, Communications and the Arts is set to exit the on-premises data centres it uses by early 2023, with all virtual machines and data to be migrated to the cloud.
The department issued a request for tender to find the new infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) platform this week as part of a wider program aimed at consolidating and transforming its IT environment.
The IaaS platform will replace a “blend of arrangements including department operated and externally provided services which have come about due to machinery of government changes in 2020”.
“These blended arrangements have resulted in the department having multiple environments, a range of existing data centres, networks and ageing technologies to support,” tender documents state.
The new platform, which will be capable of achieving a protected-level security accreditation, is expected to provide “improved IT infrastructure stability” and other advances in performance and visibility, as well as improved provision through use of Infrastructure as Code.
Only nine cloud service providers are currently capable of hosting protected-level systems under the government’s hosting certification framework: Amazon Web Services, AUCloud, Sliced Tech, Vault Cloud, Microsoft, Kyndryl, Oracle, IBM and Google.
The successful contractor will provide migration, test and acceptance services to transition to the IaaS platform, allowing the department to “disengage and decommission its incumbent service provider’s arrangements and existing data centres”.
The incumbent provider’s Canberra Data Centres data centres in Fyshwich and Hume are the first priority for the department, followed by its own Alinga Street data centre, CDC Hume data centre, and interim Azure IaaS and other small and regional servers.
The migration of virtual machines and data from the department’s existing data centres into the IaaS platform is expected to begin in October 2022, with the transition to conclude “on or before” 28 February 2023.
The contractor will also provide support services for the IaaS platform until the department finds a new managed services provider through a separate tender process slated to take place later this year.
The tender will refresh the department’s existing arrangements covering service desk, desktop support, regional support and network support and provide “long-term ongoing management, monitoring, support and maintenance of the new IaaS capability”.
The department’s plan to stand up a protected-level IaaS platform follows an approach to market by the Department of Defence for an IaaS platform to underpin a planned secret-level cloud environment.