The Government has launched a series of tenders inviting IT companies to provide services such as e-mail and instant messaging before current contracts for such services deployed under the Standard ICT Operating Environment (SOE) contract expire in early 2016.
The new tenders will cover the development, upgrading of operations and maintenance of services such as e-mail, PCs and printers that are currently under the SOE, according to a joint statement released on Monday by the Ministry of Communications and Information, the Infocomm Development Authority and the Finance Ministry.
Launched in 2008, the SOE allowed civil servants to operate out of a standardised desktop environment and tap into a standardised network. Previously, individual public agencies and departments had to build their own front-end and back-end systems. The result is a multitude of IT platforms that makes swapping data with each other difficult. To date, 75,000 such suites have been deployed across 96 government agencies. The current contracts expire in February 2016.
"Having gathered feedback from the agencies and taking into consideration their needs in the years to come, the new tenders are structured to allow greater flexibility so that agencies have more options to manage their IT infrastructure for optimal efficiency," the statement added.