Wellington City Council’s response to a number of information requests by IT consultant and commentator Ian Apperley about the Odyssey ICT project seems to raise as many questions as it answers.
Apperley’s requests stem from the council’s decision to select Australian company Technology One as its preferred supplier.
“Some observers may note that the figure of $15.3 million has been quoted in these documents as the estimated cost budgeted for the project,” WCC says in its written response.
“This is different than the approximately $10 million cost quoted by the council last month.”
According to WCC, the $10 million estimate was given in response to claims by Apperley that the project would cost $100 million or more.
“Our quick response was that the project would cost about one-tenth of Mr Apperley’s estimate,” the statement continues.
“It would have been more accurate (and helpful to those interested in the project) if we had used the figure of $15.3 million. Please be assured that the project cost has not ballooned by approximately $5 million in the past couple of weeks – and we apologise for any confusion.
“The proposed net financial return from Odyssey is a saving to the Council of $12.2 million over 10 years.”
Yet Apperley says it’s clear to him that $15 million won't cut it, quoting some examples of the costs of recent and planned projects.
1. WCC’s website replacement - $2 million plus
2. An insurance company replacing their core systems - $150 million
3. IRD IT Transformation - $1.5 billion - $2 billion
4. Cost of infrastructure replacement in a similar size organisation - $27 million
5. Cost of scoping a change to core systems, gathering requirements, similar size organisation - $135 million
6. Cost of Auckland Super City gathering requirements for IT upgrade - $100 million
7. Estimate cost of IT transformation in full amalgamation for Wellington (excluding many costs) - $150 million
8. Moving a financial application from old, to new hardware, smaller organisation - $5 million
9. Replacement cost of financial system, similar size organisation - $13 million
10. Replacement cost of HR system, similar size organisation - $9 million