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CenITex Annual Report reveals modest first year achievements

by Staff Writers •
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CentiTex, the Victorian Government-owned ICT infrastructure and services provider, has published its first Annual Report (2008-09) as a State Owned Enterprise. The report reveals a buzz of activity in terms of the building of structures and services.

CenITex, the Centre for IT Excellence, is an Information and Communications Technology (ICT) shared services agency set up to centralise ICT support to government departments and agencies.

As at 30 June 2009, CenITex was delivering common ICT infrastructure and desktop services across 6 of the 11 Victorian Government agencies. This covered some 13,765 desktops, implying a unit cost of $2,659/desktop (including the refresh of some 600 desktops.)

Total revenue from services provided to other Government agencies was $68.8 million, of which 53% ($36.6 million) was derived from "Workplace support" comprising desktop services, file and print services, email and diary services, personal productivity applications and internet access services.

Hosting services was the second largest source of CenITex’s revenue, totaling $13.3 million or 19.3%. These included application hosting, storage, back-up, restore and disaster recovery, network connectivity and security and administration utilities. Major activities included migration to CenITex of previous hosting provided by Unisys to the Departments of Premier and Cabinet, and Treasury and Finance. CenITex also highlights its "successful negotiation of significant cost savings of approximately $1.5 million on server, storage, network and firewall vendor support and maintenance contracts for 2009–10."

Other activities noted are the progressive implementation of CenITex’s "One service":

  • "Successfully implemented Lotus Notes mail and calendar, a whole of Victorian Government initiative on a shared hardware platform;
  • Implemented standardised Virtual Private Network across CenITex customer base for operational efficiency and greater functional capability to customer;
  • Consolidated two legacy internal Domain Name System services that ran on Microsoft and UNIX platforms into a single Microsoft Solution across the enterprise;
  • Standardised service for business applications and databases provided across all six customer departments, with standard monthly reports for business application availability;
  • Built and rolled out a Symantec service for rapid deployment of a standard Windows software operating environment in a repeatable, consistent, centrally managed process;
  • Centralised regional-site data backups; and
  • Implemented a new electronic tender preparation and evaluation tool for the DTF), to be used by whole of Victorian Government as a centralised electronic service to the public, replacing a manual and distributed system.

And infrastructure improvements, comprising:

  • Oracle server platform refresh and application migration for performance and capacity enhancements to customers;
  • Major server hardware refresh project; new infrastructure delivered for 82 CenITex-managed servers, including those hosting main DTF finance systems; and
  • Completed remediation works at 38 Department of Industry regional sites; upgraded legacy computing environments for refined service and quality assurance.

CenITex’s CEO, Peter Blades, noted that at formation, contractors numbered some 169, representing 70 per cent of the workforce. By 30 June, contractor numbers had been reduced to 140, or 47 per cent of headcount.

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