Council to spend nearly £200k on new IT equipment

A council is set to spend almost £200,000 replacing old IT equipment "as a priority".

Network infrastructure equipment at Stafford Borough Council needed to be replaced to avoid network failure, which could disrupt the delivery of services and affect residents, a report said.

At a meeting on Tuesday, cabinet members agreed to allocate £198,904 from council reserves towards buying up-to-date equipment.

A cabinet report proposed replacing the equipment over the next year and to establish a rolling refresh programme for ongoing replacements about every eight to 10 years.

The report cited a "growing demand on the network since the pandemic" with "increased pressure on the existing infrastructure" and the "growing use of cloud-based solutions which needed investment".

"The current network infrastructure is approximately 17-years-old and is now frequently failing under the workload."

Work was also required to strengthen the network infrastructure before any development work could begin, the report said.

“The key element of the network that needs to be replaced is the switches. A network switch has an average lifespan of between five and 10 years," it added.

Deputy council leader Rob Kenney, who presented the report, said the equipment was “a vital part of the workings of the borough”.

Councillor Ant Reid added: “I love the fact this new approach is going to be one about resilience, minimising the risk of catastrophic failure.

“We need to do this now. We should have seen investment more strategically earlier and I’m glad we’re getting to grips with the problem.”

This news was gathered by the Local Democracy Reporting Service which covers councils and other public service organisations.

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