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ACT invites tenders for whole-of-government telecoms contract

by Paris Cowan •
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Updated:The ACT Government is on the look-out for a single telecommunications provider who can take over its fixed line and mobile carriage needs, as well as the provision of mobile handsets, tablets and modems for up to eight years.

Shared Services ICT (SSICT), within the Treasury Directorate, approached the market on 11 August for “call and access services to both fixed line and mobile telecommunications” on behalf of the whole ACT Government. It intends to bundle together services that are presently covered by three separate contracts.

21 August 2012:ACT Shared Services has confirmed that the three existing contracts are held by Telstra, Optus and TransACT as follows:

  • Optus Networks Pty Ltd - Mobile Phone Products and Services
  • Telstra Corporation Limited - Fixed Voice and Data Services and Provision of Analogue Telephone Services
  • TransACT Communications - Voice Products and Services (carriage)

The contract will be for an initial four year period with two options to extend by two years.

SSICT estimates that the ACT Government, with its 18,165 full-time equivalent staff, makes roughly 9 million fixed line phone calls per year for a total 18.9 million minutes. This is in addition to 2.3 million mobile calls over 3.4 million minutes, and just over 1 million SMS messages in the same period.

Fixed line services will have to be offered from three main sites and a remaining 477 smaller sites occupied by the Government.

The fleet of handsets, tablets and modems currently in use numbers 4,423, including:

  • 2,459 Voice Service only Handsets
  • 1,119 Voice and Data enabled phones
  • 122 Portable Tablet Devices
  • 442 Broadband Modems
  • 268 Smartphones
  • 13 Satellite SIMS

The successful tenderer will also be expected to provide helpdesk services and a web-based billing information system which allows for usage analysis by the ACT Government.

Tender documents do not give any indication of the projected value of the contract, but some clues may be drawn from equivalent deals signed by similar jurisdictions.

The Tasmanian Government, which at June 2011 had 22,390 full-time equivalent staff, has recently signed contracts for the provision of fixed line and VOIP carriage across its Government. The combined value of the contracts is $12 million over three years, or $4 million per year shared equally between MyNetFone and Telstra. An option to extend by another seven years is valued at $30.8 million.

The scope of this contract, however, is narrower than the ACT approach to market. The Tasmanian Government has broken its telecommunications needs into two tranches, with the successful supplier for a RFT covering a private voice network inclusive of hardware due to be announced soon.

Tenders close for the ACT contract on 18 September 2012.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has also approached the market to fulfil its telecommunications needs, with the exception of the internet services and mobile voice and data carriage that it is required to source through relevant whole-of-government panels.

The Request for Tenders covers:

  • Dark fibre carriage; and
  • Fixed line voice carriage.

ASIC’s current telecommunications agreement, which it signed in 2009, is due to expire in September 2012.

Intermedium’s contract database reveals that ASIC signed two year-long contracts with Optus for 2010-11 and 2011-12, the last of which expires on 31 August 2012. These may well represent annualised expenditures against a broader multi-year contract. The 2010-11 contract was worth $4.2 million. The 2011-12 contract was worth $3.9 million.

ASIC staff average 139,000 outbound calls per month, at an average of 200 seconds per call.

Tenders close 6 September 2012.

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NSW Government hangs up the phone on telecommunications panels

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