MoD's £4bn IT revamp could cut costs by 20%

The Ministry of Defence's £4bn technology overhaul could shave as much as 20% off current IT expenditure, according to Bob Quick,...

The Ministry of Defence's £4bn technology overhaul could shave as much as 20% off current IT expenditure, according to Bob Quick, project team leader for the ambitious Defence Information Infrastructure scheme.

Quick said, "You can look in the 10% to 20% range of savings on current expenditures."

DII will offer new economies of scale to the department. "For example, we have got a number of helpdesk functions and different purchasing arrangements that we will be able to bring together." said Quick.

Although he was unable to reveal current IT budgets, Quick promised that some of the money saved will be reinvested in improving the ongoing capability of DII.

DII, which has been described as one of the world's most difficult infrastructure projects, will provide IT support to about 300,000 MoD and military staff. It will also integrate more than 300 legacy systems.

Last month, the government named the four consortia bidding for the information infrastructure contract. Lockheed Martin, CSC, IBM and EDS are among the firms challenging for the work.

The consortia will be shortlisted later this year and the contract will be awarded in the first quarter of 2005.

The MoD has a poor record of delivering complex technology projects. A report from the National Audit Office last December slammed the ministry for underestimating the risks involved in major projects and for time slippage in procurement programmes.

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