Gold Coast City Council Mayor Ron Clarke has endorsed a decision to use recently purchased SAP software for a wider suite of functionsThe decision means that the Council will be using the SAP software for both Enterprise Resource Planning and Property.
“We are confident this can result in savings of around $2.5 million over time,’’ he said in a statement issued on 11 August.
Mayor Clarke also endorsed a proposal to discontinue the Council’s current contract with IBM, which relates to the implementation of the new system. According to the Gold Coast News, the project to upgrade the Gold Coast City Council's IT system was worth $55.6m, and was aimed at reducing support costs for council’s antiquated computer systems, which were said to cost $1 million per week to run.
“This decision is a sensible one which will be given effect shortly, due to the consolidation of the two previously separate projects into one (ERP and Property). This consolidation has changed the scope of future work,’’ he said.
Mayor Clarke said it was important that commentators and industry observers did not confuse Council’s technology program with that of Queensland Health. “Any attempt to do so is mischievous. The issues we have are a matter of public record and are set out in various Council reports,’’ he said.
Gold Coast City Council’s Chief Executive Officer Dale Dickson told ZDNet that “we will be seeking assistance from our software provider (SAP) to help us keep the momentum of the program going while we consider a number of options for the way forward to deliver the one IT solution”.
Dickson emphasised that the decision occurred as a result of cost effectiveness and because the scope of the work had changed. “As a Council, we must pursue an outcome which ensures the best possible investment of ratepayers’ money. That is what we are achieving,” he told ZDNet.
“This decision is a sensible one which will be given effect shortly, due to the consolidation of the two previously separate projects into one.
The Council has declined to quantify the costs associated with terminating the contract, with Dickson claiming that those details are ‘confidential’ and that “any costs will be easily recouped over the course of the new, integrated approach”.