back to article IBM wins five-year whole-of-government deal with Australia

IBM and Australia’s federal government have signed a billion-dollar five-year whole-of-government procurement deal. Big Blue’s spinning it as a win because it runs for five years and means that government agencies who don’t already work with IBM now have a way to buy from the company without needing to strike new contracts. …

  1. Mayday Silver badge
    FAIL

    Nightmare

    That is all.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      how do you wind it back ?

      How does this get wound back its going to be a nightmare !

      they dont have any onshore tech and no talent beyond salespeople

  2. macjules Silver badge
    FAIL

    “significant savings"

    Australia’s government is also spinning it as a win, citing “significant savings over the next five years”.

    Bet they won't be saying that in 5 years time.

    1. Pascal Monett Silver badge

      Re: “significant savings"

      Exactly.

      There will be gnashing of teeth before this is over.

      1. Denarius Silver badge

        Re: “significant savings"

        Too late Monet !! Teeth gnashed

    2. onefang Silver badge

      Re: “significant savings"

      "Bet they won't be saying that in 5 years time."

      In five years time the current government might very well be the Opposition, so it wont be their problem. Then they can blame Labour as usual.

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Another poison pill by a government that doesn't realistically expect to be in office when the fecal matter hits the spinning cooling device?

  4. returnofthemus

    Microsoft and AWS are already going hard for cloud business in Canberra

    I'm not sure the business of Government is sitting around playing Xbox all day or even conversing with Alexa, but then again I'm not Austrailian, so I could be mistaken?

    LOL!

    1. onefang Silver badge

      Re: Microsoft and AWS are already going hard for cloud business in Canberra

      "I'm not sure the business of Government is sitting around playing Xbox all day or even conversing with Alexa, but then again I'm not Austrailian, so I could be mistaken?"

      I am Australian, and if that's what they do all day, it might explain a lot of things.

      1. frankieh

        Re: Microsoft and AWS are already going hard for cloud business in Canberra

        If you change that to PS4 and Google home.. I'm getting into politics.

        oh and I'm in AU too.

  5. Aladdin Sane Silver badge

    quantum blockchain innovation revolution

    Bingo!

  6. sanmigueelbeer Silver badge
    FAIL

    Oh dear

    IBM and Australia’s federal government have signed a billion-dollar five-year whole-of-government procurement deal.

    I hope IBM wine-and-dine y'all because once the one year "honeymoon period" ends what comes next is going to be a whole-of-government pain.

    <DOUBLE FACEPALM>

    NOTE: With a US$1B contract, I'd keep an eye out for news (in the next 12 months) about a new Australian-born addition to IBM board.

    1. onefang Silver badge

      Re: Oh dear

      "I'd keep an eye out for news (in the next 12 months) about a new Australian-born addition to IBM board."

      That sounds about right for being after the next federal election, would not surprise me if that's an exit strategy for one of our current crop of leaders. Would not surprise a lot of people if the result of that election is a change of government, or even a hung parliament.

  7. Snow Wombat
    Facepalm

    HOW??!!?

    HOW DO THEY KEEP GETTING WORK?!!?

    SERIOUSLY!?!

    In before 10 Billion dollar cost blow out.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: HOW??!!?

      Play a bit of golf? Don't really understand how this whole IT thing works? Senior management? Like nice food and drink and attending the occasional event? Got a large budget to spend somehow? Contact IBM now!

      And to translate:

      "the Australian government will achieve significant cost savings" == IBM will attempt to offshore work by firing locals, discovering they can't offshore the work and replacing the previous team with less expensive, less skilled locals and fewer of them.

      "reflects the long-term anticipated value of the agreement" == if the Australian government was stupid enough to sign a new deal after our recent history, signing up to some of our wilder ideas isn't out of the question. We have some great ideas around using Watson to mine bitcoin for five years and then switching it off to dramatically cut your greenhouse gas emissions....

      1. Denarius Silver badge
        Unhappy

        Re: HOW??!!?

        AC, you optimist you. Jobs go offshore, done badly if at all, data slurped "managed by contract conditions" * , and no local staff employed again. Oz just gets a lecture about how lazy we are and have unrealistic expectations of what governments can do. * quote from a PHB in Oz public service when questioned during the Howards Way destruction of the Australian Public Service IT.

  8. SVV Silver badge

    Well, that's Australia out of contention then

    “to become one of the top-three digital governments in the world by 2025"

    I would suggest that not wasting money on quantum computing, blockchain and AI is probably one of the main prerequisites to achieving this ambition. Try investing in actually existing useful tech on projects to make government processes run more efficiently.

    Oh, and don't lock yourself into a single big supplier.

    1. Denarius Silver badge

      Re: Well, that's Australia out of contention then

      Good point SVV. IIRCC there was a government inspired report and committee recommendation 4 years or so ago to avoid big bang outsourcery to single vendors because of lack of evidence for any cost savings or appropriate performance conditions. Inability of public serpents to manage and usefully negotiate with foreign Big Company sales weasels (my paraphrase) was also mentioned somewhere.

  9. Bavaria Blu

    $1 billion does sound cheap, even if it were AUDollar. How tiny is Australia? Or are they just better at getting a good deal?

    1. onefang Silver badge

      "How tiny is Australia?"

      Depends on what you are measuring. The physical size of Australia is roughly about the same as USA. The population size is roughly on par with a few of the larger USA cities put together. The IQ of our politicians as on par with USA politicians, but that's a low bar to clear. We have waaaay less states, but since we fit them into the same area USA squeezes it's into, ours are much larger. We have cattle ranches that are bigger than Texas, USA. We have a small country town called Texas, which if I recall correctly is near a small country town called Paris. Oddly enough, each of our three biggest cities individually has a bigger area than almost any USA city. We have way more species of deadly animal than just about anywhere else. Our mountains are kinda short. We have the biggest rock in the world, but no natural holes in the ground as big as the Grand Canyon, though I can't comment on the size of our man made holes. One of our cities has the largest Greek population outside of Athens, and that city has a Malaka* Street to celebrate that fact (I used to live near it, oddly in an area with a large Jewish population).

      Our dollar is often smaller than the USA dollar, but has been known to be bigger.

      It's entirely possible that our politicians are cheaper to buy than USA politicians, I've never compared them. While it is true that anything imported tends to be more expensive than it is in the country we import it from (known locally as the Australia Tax, they do it coz they can get away with it), we recently purged our politicians of any with dual nationality, or potential dual nationality, or even rumoured dual nationality, so none of the remaining lot are imports.

      Some of the above may be inaccurate, I've not looked things up recently, and my memory may be wrong on some of the details.

      * I'm not Greek, nor do I know any Greek, but until just now when I bothered to look it up, I was under the impression "Malaka" is Greek for "shit". My quick web search tells me it has a variety of meanings, most of them not good. This maybe why the area around it is largely Jewish, the Greeks didn't want to go near it. I have no idea if "Malaka" is a Hebrew word, I don't speak that language either.

    2. Denarius Silver badge
      Meh

      @Barvaria Blu

      Oz, get a good deal ? Only if Sydney, Melbourne and Canberra wiped out by a tsunami concurrently. Oz ruling cliques, whether public or private, are trained overseas and have a craven colonial mindset instilled. In some cases it might be genetic.This mindset is at odds with the general population who think they are are as good as anyone else. Some of them are better, some worse like any other country. However the brown nosing manglement (for want of an appropriately vile epithet) adopt foreign fads only after the poms and merkins at least have shown that said fad does not work, has been demonstrated to fail multiple times and means lots of money, usually taxpayers and long term investors, goes overseas in return for lots of markings on dead tree carcass if that.

  10. Justicesays

    "gig that later went very pear-shaped indeed (although the client was to blame)"

    I wonder how IBM got that previous contract?

    "“The only finding possible is that IBM should not have been appointed” to the contract in the first place in part because of “ethical transgressions” on the part of some of its employees, including “the obligation not to use the State’s confidential [bid and proposal] information” that it had somehow couldn't explain came into its possession from a restricted government database along with the apparent privileged insider information from a government consultant to the project who happened to be a former-IBM employee."

    Any former IBM employees involved with this new bid?

    1. onefang Silver badge
      Joke

      "that it had somehow couldn't explain came into its possession from a restricted government database"

      It was locked in a filing cabinet, that was purchased from a second hand furniture dealer? Only people that have been paying attention to a recent Aussie government scandal are expected to understand that joke.

  11. TVU Silver badge

    IBM wins five-year whole-of-government deal with Australia

    I am not sure that IBM and innovation go together these days. The only way they are currently being creative now is coming up with ways to unjustly sack staff.

  12. theExecutive

    quantumchain blockovation innolution

    May as well use these Bingo words, as they dont exist, and will never get delivered, and Id quite like to go to Australia where the government are on ICE or other hard drugs, and have wodges of cash to spaff all over the worst ideas by the worlds worst outsourced supplier, yeah Australia can be my SPAFFDADDY!!!!!

  13. TReko
    Go

    Bureaucrat who made the decision to work for IBM next year

    that's the way the revolving door works in Australia - throw a supplier a contract, resign and go work for them next year as a reward.

  14. InsideKnowledge

    Remember the 2016 Census

    Wasn't that IBM? The Australian Government never learn.

    1. hottuberrol

      Re: Remember the 2016 Census

      Certainly was IBM that ran the census. A monumental clusterf**k.

      And then there was the Prime Minister's highly advertised "innovation nation" election promise to drive technology development and industry in Australia....

      So let's solve both problems at once by giving the work to a non-Australian company with a track record of failure. And yet , people wonder why I moved my IT career from Australia to Europe.

      1. onefang Silver badge

        Re: Remember the 2016 Census

        "election promise to drive technology development and industry in Australia...."

        ...over a cliff.

    2. sanmigueelbeer Silver badge

      Re: Remember the 2016 Census

      Wasn't that IBM? The Australian Government never learn.

      Yes, this is the same IBM that failed to deliver the QLD Health Payroll system.

      And yes, this is the same Australian Government that said that "heads will roll" after the ABS Census went down like a $5 hooker.

      Seeeeriously, I didn't realize that the phrase "heads will roll" means that Malcolm Turnbull will be handing IBM a >US$1B contract.

      NOTE: It may say US$1B contract but in reality it will be MORE THAN three times the value over time.

      1. onefang Silver badge

        Re: Remember the 2016 Census

        'Seeeeriously, I didn't realize that the phrase "heads will roll" means that Malcolm Turnbull will be handing IBM a >US$1B contract.'

        "Heads will roll" means bundles of cash will roll like heads of lettuce into IBMs coffers. For those that don't know about the colour of Aussie money, the green ones are the largest, $100 notes.

  15. ItsFullOfScars

    $1 billion? What a bargain. This $2 billion deal with IBM is a smart investment in Australia's tech future. Quantum AI blockchain is the paradigm shift that will launch Australian federal agencies well and truly in to the 21st century - and all this for just $5 billion.

  16. Pascal Monett Silver badge
    WTF?

    Quantum ?

    So IBM has taken q-bit processors out of the lab and learned how to program them to file and store citizen census data ?

    Somehow that smacks of bullshit to me.

  17. Bill Posters
    Coat

    Click.

    Drops Mouse.

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Big headline

    > "reflects the long-term anticipated value of the agreement".

    It's a big headline but it's over 5 years, and possibly maybe could be $150M USD a year. Who knows...

    Great for the current sales team to grab any commission then run for the hills...

  19. Robert Helpmann?? Silver badge
    Childcatcher

    Buzzword Bingo

    ...all today’s best buzzwords - quantum, blockchain and AI.

    What, there's no IoT, digital detox, microservice or serverless architecture, something/everything/anything as a service (XaaS), dark data, self-service analytics? For that much money, I would expect IBM to go really, really big. Three buzzwords is hardly enough to get out of bed for.

    1. onefang Silver badge
      IT Angle

      Re: Buzzword Bingo

      Most of that stuff is too new for our Prime Minister, the Man Who Invented The Internet*, to have heard of. He's still catching up on how mathematics works.

      * According to our previous Prime Minister, who is rumoured to have had at least two whole brain cells. Possibly as many as five, which he may have shared with his Treasurer.

      IT? icon, coz they've heard of it.

  20. cs9

    The world's turned upside down

    Correction to the editors: The deal was actually with IBM's .au subsidiary, ɯqᴉ.

  21. This post has been deleted by its author

  22. Denarius Silver badge

    Just cant get pessimistic enough

    Granted western civilisation has been committing intellectual suicide for 2 centuries, but I did not expect Oz to throw away its government IT remnants so rapidly. All Oz citizens need to practice writing legibly with the original digital interface, because the electronic comms systems will be done for good soon. OTOH, state sponsored snooping will not work to well.

  23. Tim99 Silver badge
    Big Brother

    Well

    I suppose it might make it a little easier for the current government to consolidate our data and flog/give it to their mates?

  24. cloth

    Quantum !?

    Really !? No wonder Governments are notorious for losing money if they get suckered with pie in the sky words like Quantum ! IBM marketing machine on full tilt there.

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Five eyes!

  26. PeterM42
    Facepalm

    IBM meaning

    It'll Be Murder

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    IBM Highly qualified

    as they are not a Chinese company & Australia is trying to eliminate the likelihood of any outside influence.

    how many Whole-of-Government companies are there with the full gammut of services, bad or otherwise ?

  28. Paul 129
    Joke

    One Billion DDOLLARS!!!

    Bwwhahahah!

    Sounds like Dr Evil is at it again.

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