Government CITHS buying framework announces IT suppliers

News Will Garside Mar 09, 2010
CITHS replaces the old IT Goods and Associated Services (ITGAS) Framework Agreement and now uses a segmented approach

HP and Dell fail to get a seat while Fujitsu, Insight Direct and ComputaCenter score a hat trick.

Buying Solutions, the national procurement partner for UK public services has announced the suppliers that have been selected for its new Commoditised IT Hardware and Software (CITHS) buying framework.

CITHS replaces the old IT Goods and Associated Services (ITGAS) Framework Agreement and now uses a segmented approach that separates desktop hardware, IT infrastructure and software with up to 13 suppliers in each category.

Only Fujitsu (FJTSY), Insight Direct and  ComputaCenter (LSE: CCC.L) have been included as suppliers across all three areas of the new CITHS framework. However, previously prominent vendors such as Dell (NASDAQ:DELL) and HP (NYSE: HPQ) have been excluded although both are represented through accredited channel partners. New entrant Kelway has also made both the Desktop Hardware and Infrastructure categories 

Trustmarque
has also made the software category of which security and virtualisation are key areas in the view of  Scott Haddow, CEO of Trustmarque Solutions who believes “these are career defining decision for many government  IT manager,” of which picking the right partner is an essential element.
Haddow believes that there has been under-investment in IT within government over the last year, partly due to the economic climate, but that customers “can't just sit on their hands forever.”
Framework
The framework has been structured so that products and services can be quickly and efficiently called off, while standard terms and conditions provide the important contractual safeguards needed for those involved in public sector procurement

Haddow believes that future big flagship projects, of which recent examples have generated a lot of negative press, will have a lot more scrutiny.  He points to the growth of Business Intelligence software as a guide to a more return on investment minded approach to IT within government. BI is another major growth area in Haddow’s view.

According to Buying Solutions, in 2008/9, customers using the old ITGAS framework made savings of £62m. The public sector spends more than £120bn on goods and services annually and Buying Solutions plans to significantly increase its share of this huge marketplace each year, working towards a target savings figure of £1bn in 2010/11.

The full list of partners can be viewed here.

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