Wellington co. wins contract for single government web platform

Local government’s IT services could be next to be streamlined if the government’s new single-platform works well.

Wellington company SilverStripe has won the contract to provide a single platform for government agencies – potentially replacing more than 50 different departmental content management systems.

Internal affairs minister Chris Tremain called for the development last year as part of the government’s better public services initiative.

“Having one common platform will enable government departments to share and reuse website features. This will improve consistency, efficiency and lower costs.”

Mr Tremain, who has since also picked up the local government portfolio, hinted at the possibility of councils around the country also following a similar path.

“There’s a good opportunity with ICT and while I can’t guarantee this particular thing will roll out at local government, it’s certainly an example of what can be achieved,” Mr Tremain told NBR ONLINE.

He does not expect all 50 government web systems to change all at once, but says as one does make the switch, it will save $50,000 each time.

“That doesn’t sound like a money, but in the 10 - 12 done each year, that’s potentially half a million dollars saved.”

SilverStripe’s ceo Sam Minnee told NBR ONLINE it has been a tough and very competitive IT environment in the past few years and to secure this contract in the face of strong national and international competition, has been rewarding.

“Really it’s a validation New Zealand companies can compete on a level playing field with international companies and it was a lot of work to get here but we’re proud to have achieved it.”

Mr Minee would not put a figure on the value to the company, but says it is a long-term commitment having also been selected to provide on-going maintenance to the sites.

And he has not ruled out the possibility of new jobs being created.

“A big variable is how many agencies take up the platform, so we’re certainly looking forward to seeing what that leads to. There is a lot of potential for new jobs.”

bcunningham@nbr.co.nz

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Well done Silverstripe!!

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NZ govt should ditch MS and go Red Hat Linux. It would save millions in licencing fees and operating restrictions. If the New York Stock Exchange can ditch proprietary platforms so can NZ Govt departments.

http://www.informationweek.com/software/infrastructure/new-york-stock-ex...

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That's awesome news, guys! We're absolutely stoked for you.

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Wonderful news!

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Great to see a kiwi company win some big local business. Well done guys.

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Why should our govt keep adding millions to Bill Gates' billions? Go Linuxit's proven stable and cost-effective in most of the world's web servers and email systems.

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Sounds like very small beer, and what is it going to cost in the long run? Haven't they heard of Talent 2. One size fits all ... yeah right.

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Well done... putting all eggs in one....

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Ridiculous idea.

The real cost of Govt software is the software development effort associated with implementing its specific business requirements.
Platform costs barely figure in the equation. By moving to a system that does not support some of the best development tools available and narrowing the pool of developers accustomed to using them will only increase costs.

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Good points, but I think you'll find the one-size-fits all approach and provision of ongoing maintenance are very appealing for govt teams who need to keep sites updated but don't have squillions to spend on developers.

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