Westpac outsourcing foray unfolds

Westpac Bank expects to have finalised its decision on outsourcing partners sometime this calendar year.

The organisation announced yesterday it has narrowed its shortlist of potential partners to two consortiums -- IBM Global Services Australia and Telstra, or CSC and Cable & Wireless Optus.

In January, Westpac announced the intention to outsource a large chunk of its IT and telecommunications infrastructure. According to officials, the bank is looking for a partner to manage its core banking technology, including mainframes, mid-range computers, PCs, network and telco requirements in Australia, New Zealand and the Pacific region. Systems development, strategy and architecture are to remain inhouse.

David Lording, head of media relations at Westpac, said yesterday Westpac is "extremely comfortable with the proposals" and hopes to have determined a suitable partner by the end of the year.

While Lording would not speculate on the cost savings Westpac is hoping to achieve through outsourcing, he said the move to outsource is part of Westpac's cost savings program.

EDS, which was awarded a 10-year deal to manage IT operations for the Commonwealth Bank in 1997, has dropped out of the running for this contract.

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More about Cable & WirelessCommonwealth Bank of AustraliaCSC AustraliaEDS AustraliaIBM AustraliaOptusTelstra CorporationWestpacWestpacWestpac Bank

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