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Unisys signs contract extensions with Australian immigration department

To provide outsourced desktop services, and biometric and identity management services

Unisys has revealed that its Australian subsidiary has received a two year contract extensions from the Australian Department of Immigration and Citizenship (DIAC) for the current engagements where it provides outsourced desktop services, and biometric and identity management offerings.

Uner the extended contract, the company will continue to provide outsourced desktop services to DIAC through June 2013. The value of the products and services to be provided by Unisys during the extension is estimated at approximately $39.7m. As part of the extended desktop services contract, Unisys has begun virtualising the IT infrastructure supporting the department’s national office.

The Unisys desktop outsourcing contract began in 2007 and covers selected end-user computing services including service desk operations, business support services and applications support secure email and internet services. It helps advance the department’s strategic objective to simplify the IT environment and services that support it, the company said.

DIAC has also awarded Unisys a 12 month contract extension to continue to provide biometric identity authentication services through August 2010. The extension will allow DIAC to purchase up to approximately $2.3m of biometric identity services from Unisys.

Under the biometric-identity authentication services contract extension, Unisys is providing products and services as part of DIAC’s national Biometrics for Border Control Program. Unisys is responsible for supplying systems that will allow immigration officials to authenticate an individual’s identity through facial images and fingerprinting. The original contract began in 2006.

Tony Henshaw, Asia Pacific vice president of global outsourcing and infrastructure services at Unisys, said: “These two contract extensions reflect how Unisys has successfully worked closely with DIAC to reach some of the objectives set by an independent review of the Australian government ICT spending by improving processes and better using resources to support high-quality service delivery — while being accountable for the use of public funds.

“Better IT support allows DIAC personnel to focus on managing the needs of people visiting or seeking to settle in Australia, and the movement of refugees into Australian territory.”

Unisys currently provides services for approximately more than 7,000 DIAC staff nationally, and staff in more than 60 locations overseas. The company claims that since commencing the contract, it has increased the proportion of first call resolutions by the service desk, recorded improved customer satisfaction and handled approximately 175,000 calls as part of more than 200,000 total contacts per year. Unisys has also helped the department improve web site performance and reduce spam email.

According to Unisys, through virtualisation, it is simplifying DIAC’s IT environment, replacing 107 existing servers with eight new ones and providing assessment, design and implementation services, and required hardware. The virtualised IT infrastructure supports the DIAC staff’s daily end-user computing functions including email, personal and shared storage resources and print services.