Posts Tagged ‘ICT’

ICT Sector Is More Than BPO And Call Centres, Shareholders Want Government To Maximise Other Opportunities

November 9th, 2015

Information and Communications Technology (ICT) has been hailed as one of the planks of Jamaica’s growth-inducement strategy.outsourcing22

The growth-inducement strategy, drafted in 2011, places inordinate focus on the business process outsourcing (BPO) and call-centre segment of ICT, a fact that seems to have spilt over into the development of the sector.

While BPO and call-centre operations in Jamaica have delivered an estimated US$250 million in value, account for more than 14,000 jobs, and enjoy the highest employment growth rate of any subsectors over the past decade, industry insiders are concerned that it is being viewed as the panacea of ICT development to the detriment of other areas of the sector.

Trevor Forrest, who is a vice-president of the Jamaica Information Technology & Services Alliance (JITSA), has called for whichever party forms the next government – when the election dust has settled – to “seriously look at ICT as the enabler of economic growth above and beyond BPOs”.

Joining him in that call is immediate past president of the Jamaica Computer Society Dean Smith, who opines that “we continue to operate by importing expensive base technology (hardware and software) without using it to generate economic growth across all sectors (agriculture, construction, tourism, manufacturing, ICT, government, etc) and solving chronic challenges by examining business processes for optimisation despite our nuanced milieu”.

Ignored Opportunities

Smith further points out that Jamaica has, in large measure, ignored opportunities to take a share of the more than US$2 trillion information technology outsourcing -knowledge process outsourcing system architecture and software engineering services market because of its singular focus on the BPO call-centre subsector.

Another level of analysis to the BPO call-centre dominance is added by director of the ICT Division at the University of Technology, Lisa Facey-Shaw, who argues that there is too much concentration on low-end ICT services.

For Facey-Shaw, the BPO sector in its current state is too low down in the value chain, and she wants the Government to “consolidate data across all government agencies for greater efficiency, provide greater levels of e-citizen services, foster an innovation mindset among the nation’s youth by instituting innovation education from the early levels of education, attract higher-end BPO services, and facilitate an enabling environment for the development of ICT businesses”.

Internet Marketing Consultant Wayne Marsh highlights the fact that Jamaica has not been able to benefit from non-call centre, BPO-based ICT-outsourced projects because of the lack of skilled personnel to engage in other high-end areas of the sector.

“The next government should create a national vision around training and creating a workforce to develop software to replace the current imported ones now in use (a software import substitution programme), while developing Jamaica as an outsourcing destination for software development. This would result in significant hard currency savings in software licence and maintenance fees as well as provide opportunities for local graduates to attain the well-needed work experience,” he said.


HMRC launches 20 million tender for IT consulting

October 19th, 2015

The HMRC has launched a £20 million tender for consulting firms to guide its IT department in a move away from a one sized mega-project IT system operated by one main contractor to one that is open to many smaller and mid-sized IT contractors. The reason for the decision is increased control over projects, as well as increased competition lowering profit-making. The department is looking to make the changes by 2017, when its current contract with Capgemini ends.
Since the mid-1990s, the HM Revenue & Customs (HMRC) has gone for a one player mega-contract approach for its IT needs. The first contract going to EDS, followed by Capgemini’s Aspire IT framework which started in 2004 and is contracted to run until 2017.

Whereas a one contract approach has advantages – such that the main sub-contractors Fujitsu and Accenture are all co-ordinated by Capgemini – there have also been issues raised by the approach. A 2014 National Audit Office report highlights that, by giving full control of IT to one contractor, the department lost direction and control of its ICT, lost flexibility to get things done with the right supplier quickly or make greater use of cross-government shared infrastructure and services.

Further issues highlighted by the report are that, through the HMRC’s dependence on a single supplier, the department becomes dependent on the expertise of its suppliers. Recent benchmarking studies also show that of the around £10 billion the project is expected to cost by 2017, Capgemini will be making a tidy 16% profit, amounting to £1.2 billion. This is more than double the £500 million original projection. HMRC one player mega-contract run by Capgemini

Changing direction
To end the excessive profit making, as well as gain more control over its IT estate, the HMRC is looking to change the way in which its IT systems are operated. It is seeking for consultancy advice worth up to £20 million to move away from its single Aspire outsourcing arrangement towards a more varied outsourcing approach that involves a number of smaller contracts that manage the HMRC’s IT systems. Under the new procurement system, the department will seek to have its IT systems managed by up to 400 IT subcontract suppliers, with no contract worth more than £100 million. The new way of operating is expected to generate a number of advantages, which include the ability for a wide range of contractors to tender, while opening up the government service to smaller and medium-sized IT contractors and services companies that can compete for contracts.

To make the changes, the HMRC recently advertised for a tender, stating it is looking for an expert firm that can see that the HMRC “needs an injection of strategic-level experience and capacity to support people and culture transformation… HMRC will require the supplier to provide strategic input to the planning of this activity and for support for senior line managers in delivering it.” HMRC seeks new IT procurement system

Future havoc
Not everyone believes however that bringing in a large number of small players will improve the quality of service or lower operating costs. For instance, Mark Dearnley, the department’s Chief Information and Digital Officer, says that getting rid of Aspire for a new system could itself cost up to £600 million. The government’s Chief Commercial Officer Bill Crothers warns that if wide-ranging changes are to be made then planning needs to start early. “This is enormous, risky and important, and that should guide what we do. Sitting behind this is getting better capability, being a better client and doing things in a phased way as much as possible…we should not be complacent,” he says.


How and why billion dollar businesses make IT investments

August 28th, 2015

Kable Global ICT Intelligence: Companies choose IT providers based on expertise and price to support revenue growth.Outsourcing33

Analysis from Kable unveiled enterprises with over $1 billion in revenues are or will be looking into outsourcing IT functions with nearly 60% (57.9%) of participants saying they are already outsourcing applications, service desk support and help desk or planning to do so in the next two years.

Only 36.8% admitted they are not outsourcing or planning to do so within these areas, while 5.3% answered ‘no’ but said they are considering outsourcing.

As for IT infrastructure, 52.5% of respondents said they already are or may be outsourcing solutions in this space in the next two years, with 36.8% not doing so and 10.5% considering this route.

Similarly to IT infrastructure, 10.5% of those surveyed said they currently do not outsource IT management but are considering it.

Kable has found that the most important criteria for businesses when choosing an IT provider are industry expertise, price and specific functionality expertise.

The research took into account respondents from businesses with over $1 billion in revenues.

Those surveyed rated the three mentioned criteria with a score of 3.3, with the rating scale going up to four points meaning ‘very important’.

Leading-edge technology was voted fourth with a score of 3.2, followed by financial stability, breadth of solution offerings and geographical reach with 3.1, 3.0 and 2.9 respectively.

At the bottom of the league, companies put financing options like payment terms (2.8) and contract flexibility (2.7).

Kable’s research also revealed that the importance of various IT objectives in influencing IT investment strategies do not have a big disparity between them.

Using the same measurement technique from one to four points, businesses said that using IT to support revenue growth, with an average rating of 2.7, is their main objective influencer when investing in IT strategies.

This is followed by aligning IT with overall business goals and better demonstrating the value of IT to the business, both with a rating of 2.6.

Organisations taking part in the report rated the objective to deliver new functionality to business users with 2.5, while meeting internal service level agreements scored the lowest with 2.4.

All figures come from Kable’s ICT Customer Insight survey, which polled 2685 respondents, from across the world in Q4 2014. The survey findings include data on criteria when choosing an IT provider, importance of IT objectives in influencing IT investment strategies and IT functions that are outsourced now, or which may be outsourced in the next two years.


Council’s IT outsourcing plan hit by delay

August 28th, 2015

The implementation of a new outsourced information and communications technology (ICT) service for Scottish Borders Council – in a shared arrangement with Edinburgh City Council – has been delayed.Outsourcing32

A report on the future of the 80-strong in-house department at Newtown was due to be presented to councillors in October.

But a meeting of SBC’s executive heard this would be delayed until December following the announcement last month that Canadian IT giant CGI has won a seven-year contract to replace BT as the provider of ICT services to the city council.

“Once we have access to the proposals that CGI have put forward, the suitability and cost of individual services can be further examined,” said Rob Dickson, SBC’s corporate transformation director.

“This analysis and engagement phase will now run through September and October.

“It is now planned to finalise the full proposal on December 17.”


Demand for BPO highest in Davao City

August 21st, 2015

DAVAO City’s business process outsourcing (BPO) industry continues to expand and improve as Jones Lang LaSalle Leechiu (JLL), one of the country’s largest real estate advisory and consulting firm, cited the city’s demand for industry workers and locators has remained to be the highest in the country.Outsourcing29

“The country’s top BPO locators told us during the BPO forum on Tuesday that Davao, among all the cities in the Philippines, has absorbed the biggest number of the BPO demand in the country last year,” Lawyer Samuel Matunog, president of the Information and Communication Technology (ICT)-Davao, said at the sidelines of the ICT Chief Executive Officers’ Conference during the Livelihood Exchange (Livex) Philippines 2015 at the SMX Convention Center Wednesday.

Matunog said, even David Lee Chiu, country head of JLL praised the performance of the city.

BPO locators are individuals working on the promotion of cities like Davao for the locators to come and invest in the city.

Based on the IT and Business Process Association of the Philippines (Ibpap) data, an estimation of 33,000 total volume of BPO full time equivalent employees is recorded in Davao by 2014.

Matunog said measures on expanding and developing BPO employees are suggested by JLL. BPO developers are also told to follow the market before building so as not to experience unoccupied BPO spaces.

“We should not go ahead to much from the market, market should be there first and the key predictor of the market is talent development, if wala, then the market cannot grow,” he said.

ICT-Davao Inc. is banking on the results of the innovative reform on the Philippine basic education system on IT skills development aside from the various skills development training and initiatives the ICT industry is providing.

Among the top 100 BPO destination in the world are the cities of Manila, Cebu, Bacolod, Iloilo, Baguio, and Santa Rosa according to Tholons 2015 Report List.

JLL is a professional services and investment management firm providing management and real estate outsourcing services for a property portfolio of 3.4 billion square feet, or 316 million square meters, and completed $118 billion in sales, acquisitions and finance transactions in 2014.

Among the top 100 BPO destination in the world are the cities of Manila, Cebu, Bacolod, Iloilo, Baguio, and Santa Rosa according to Tholons 2015 Report List.


Mass opposition to outsourcing of SBC IT jobs

March 20th, 2015

More than 60 Scottish Borders Council IT staff joined union officials at a mass meeting this week to voice fierce opposition to plans to outsource 80 jobs.Outsourcing7

Employees in the information and communications technology (ICT) service at the local authority were briefed last week on the findings of a comprehensive review, including a proposal for a joint arrangement with City of Edinburgh Council that would see 80 council IT staff outsourced to a support company provider in October.

But at a packed meeting with Unite union officials in a Galashiels hotel on Monday night, there was unanimous anger and opposition over the proposals.

So serious does Unite consider the situation that its deputy regional secretary, Mary Alexander, travelled to Galashiels to address the IT workers.

And Tony Trench, Unite’s regional industrial officer, says another meeting will be held next week and there will also be a petition launched.

“And it’s not just IT staff at the council who should be worried about their jobs, IT staff at places like NHS Borders should also be concerned,” said Mr Trench.

“We disagree totally with plans to outsource any jobs and want to see the figures that have been used to justify this.”

Monday night’s meeting was also attended – as observers – by SBC Conservative councillors Michelle Ballantyne and Gavin Logan.

Conservative opposition group leader Mrs Ballantyne said the briefing given to elected members this week had left a lot of unanswered questions.

“We will be seeking answers and further information before we can consider what is the right decision for the future of ICT in the council,” she said.

“We certainly won’t be pushed blindly into agreeing to outsource the service and will need to be convinced by substantial evidence that this is the best solution.”

And in an email to all 34 councillors last week from one disgruntled IT staff member at SBC, elected members were urged to join the fight against the outsourcing of jobs.

“IT staff can earn more in the city, but we stay because we love our jobs, the quality of life the Borders has to offer, and we want to stay in the area,” stated the email.


Sri Lanka’s ICT, BPO SECTOR targets $1 B revenue in 2015

January 13th, 2015

The Information and Communications Technology (ICT) and the Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) sector in Sri Lanka is eyeing revenue of $1 billion by 2015 and $5 billion by 2020, and poised to become the country’s largest foreign exchange earner, a report in the government website showed.Outsourcing43

Quoting figures from the Institute of Business Process Outsourcing (IBPO), the report also said the sector generated more than $400 million export income in 2014.

Set up by the Youth Affairs and Skills Development Ministry in collaboration with the National Youth Corps (NYC), IBPO is the country’s first training institute for Business Process Outsourcing, which aims to attract as many youth to join the industry in the next two years.

It offers skills training in back office operations, customer care, finance and technical support in industries such as hotels, travel, telecom, BPO, call centres and financial services.

According to the IBPO, the industry forecast for revenue growth can be realised only if his industry can increase its BPO talent-pool annually by at least 15,000-20,000  for the next two three years.

“Looking at the prospects in the BPO sector, the Sri Lankan government is all set to provide an environment that is conducive for the growth of BPO industry,” it said in its website.

Meanwhile, the Sri Lankan Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM) is also committed to supporting the growth of the industry.

Last November, Sri Lanka won the National Outsourcing Association (NOA) Offshoring Destination of the Year Award 2014 in London, which SLASSCOM said validates that the country as a destination for outsourcing of information technology and Business Process Management.

Jayantha De Silva, Chairman of SLASSCOM, said in a news release that  winning theaward for two years in a row has put Sri Lanka on the map, especially in niche markets of Product Engineering and FAO.


Protected by تهنئة
Get Adobe Flash player