Brighton and East Sussex councils have signed a £20m deal for a public services network (PSN), expected to save £2m over seven years.
The deal with managed network provider MDNX could grow to £30m if more public sector bodies get on board. It is expected to take around 20% out of the councils’ network costs.
The 10Gbps network will be rolled out by the end of August across 270 public sector bodies, including schools, police and fire and rescue services across the two councils.
It is also expected to drive savings by enabling better use of property through co-location and provide the core infrastructure for a greater use of shared services.
East Sussex County Council is undergoing an SAP shared services arrangement with Surrey County Council, which will host the system on its behalf.
Tony Summers, CIO at East Sussex County Council, said the PSN will enable that arrangement to happen as the council will be able to receive services over its network.
He said it will allow more local authorities to provide services to each other, enabling the public sector to "become its own marketplace".
Summers added that it will provide links into more authorities, through a common set of PSN standards, as more councils move to a joined-up approach to procurement.
Paul Colbran, CIO at Brighton and Hove City Council, said the deal will enable the council to use more cloud services. “The PSN is core to the delivery of G-Cloud, as it will enable those services,” he said.
Brighton and Hove is already using the G-Cloud for several services such as CRM and web hosting.