makspogonii - Fotolia
The Ministry of Defence has signed two contracts costing a combined total of just under £1.5bn for the supply of IT and communications.
The government department has split the contracts into two projects: the New Style of IT (NSoIT) project with the Atlas Consortium, which costs £933m and will provide IT services; and the Global Connectivity contract with Fujitsu, which will supply connectivity services and costs more than £550m.
The MoD hopes the contracts will help it save £1bn over the next 10 years, which it can reinvest directly into its defence budget for new equipment and defence programmes.
“We must keep pace with those who pose a threat to UK security, whether overt or cyber-based. The new contracts will enhance our fighting capability and make us more efficient in our work,” said defence secretary Michael Fallon.
“Alongside this enhanced capability we have managed to secure huge savings of £1bn over 10 years. All of this money will be reinvested back into defence, ultimately helping keep Britain safe.”
The Atlas Consortium’s NSoIT project, which is a collaborative project led by HP and including Fujitsu, Airbus Defence and Space, and CGI, is a renegotiated version of the MoD’s Defence Information Infrastructure (DII) contract.
The original DII contract, which was approximately £570m, was awarded to the Atlas Consortium in 2010 to replace outdated systems and provide new computer terminals to employees in MoD locations such as the Royal Air Force and Joint Helicopter Command.
Read more about government IT contracts
Fujitu’s five-year Global Connectivity contract acts as a replacement to the MoD’s Defence Fixed Telecommunications Service agreement, which is set to expire in July 2016.
Together the contracts aim to provide increased employee mobility, secure IT services such as cloud computing and Microsoft Office 365, as well as “integrated user services”, more details on which will be announced at a later date.
However, the department is still without a follow-up contract for voice, video and mobile phone, but it announced this would be reported on later in 2015.
Read more on IT for government and public sector
The government has declined to comment on a basic mistake it has made in an official report on a £7bn defence IT project.
A "Treasury Minutes" report...