KPMG is to outsource a significant chunk of its IT management to BT in a deal worth £62m over five years. If successful the contract, in the UK and Germany, may be extended to other countries in which KPMG has offices.
No announcement has been made as to how this will affect jobs.
KPMG said the deal would deliver significant operating cost savings. A statement from BT Global Services CEO Tim Smart suggested that IT is increasingly being seen as a utility, rather than a strategic tool. "Our clients are increasingly looking to us to run their non-core business processes and assets," he said.
BT will run services such as the management and refreshment of both local and wide area networks, integrating KPMG's Microsoft Office Communications Server (OCS) platform with its Cisco IP Telephony, management of video and audio conferencing and management of fixed voice and Time-Division Multiplexing (TDM) telephony.
Central to this contract will be an obligation for BT to deliver a fully converged, IP-based, networked telephony infrastructure on time. This will then allow KPMG offices in other countries to follow suit and outsource their services. Initially, the agreement will be limited to the UK and Germany.
This is an ambitious outsourcing programme, admitted Bryan Clark, the KPMG partner leading the IT infrastructure consolidation. He remained confident that it could bring about cost savings while improving service to clients. He also predicted the deal would help KPMG's future expansion. "Having a consistent infrastructure platform and service model will help the integration of new KPMG firms joining our newly created European firm," he said.
Clark said he was happy with BT's track record as an outsourcing partner. "BT's deep expertise in network and IT services and experience in managing complex global contracts were key factors in making this investment decision."
BT's Smart concluded: "This deal demonstrates the expansion of BT's partnering approach in Europe and globally. With employees working across multiple sites across Europe including thousands in the UK and Germany, KPMG needs a fast and flexible communications network. Meeting these needs is our primary focus."