The Australian Government Information Management Office (AGIMO) within the Department of Finance and Deregulation has released another whole of government Request for Tender (RFT), this time for the provision of internet-based network connections (IBNC) panel.
The RFT has been released during the caretaker conventions period, indicating that Finance views it as non-contentious from a policy perspective. In deciding to release it, Finance would also have taken into consideration that the RFT’s evaluation and recommendation stages will occur well into the life of the new government.
Finance have released two other RFTs during this period, one for the Provision of Commercial-Off-The-Shelf (COTS) Software for Central Budget Management System and the one for the Telecommunications Lifecycle Management Services Panel (TLMS).
Writing on the AGIMO Blog, Acting Branch Head Mundi Tomlinson sought to distinguish the differences in scope between the TLMS and the IBNC, particularly in regards to Virtual Carriage Management Services (VCMS).
“VCMS covers the end-to-end management of Virtual Connections over underlying carriage services (eg VPN management) and is part of the Internet Based Network Connections RFT,” she said.
“I would expect many of the Telcos and System Integrators to bid for both services.”
According to tender documents, Finance is seeking “a diverse panel of IBNC providers, which will comprise of Telecommunication Carriage Providers and Telecommunication Systems Integrator Providers who have capabilities in the provision of internet carriage and managed services within the internet network connection space”.
The scope of the INBC services sought includes:
- Network Carriage Services
- Virtual Connection Management Services
- IP Carriage Services
- Major Internet Connection Services
Plans for the INBC panel arrangement were first flagged when AGIMO released a request for proposal in March of this year.
The IBNC and TLMS join other whole-of-government panel arrangements that have been entered into by AGIMO since the Sir Peter Gershon’s recommendations on improving Government ICT were handed down in 2008:
- Tenders have already closed for a place on the whole-of-govt Desktop Hardware Panel (FIN10/AGI001); and
- Tenders remain open for the Major Office Machines Panel until August 24.
Finance’s 2010-11 Annual Procurement Plan suggests that there will be a number more tenders for whole of government panels to follow, including:
- An ICT Services panel;
- A telecommunications operational management services panel;
- A data centre facilities panel;
- A data centre migration services panel; and
- A panel of ICT suppliers or resellers for software and related services.
Tenders for the IBNC panel close 30 September 2010 at 2 pm ACT time.