IBM inks $725m deal for government systems

The federal agency in charge of the government's digital future has inked a $725 million deal with IBM Australia to provide essential products and services.

The Digital Transformation Agency announced on Monday it has struck a five-year agreement with IBM, enabling departments to share resources and not waste time and money on buying their own.

Adding to ties that date back to 2018, agency head Chris Fechner said the new agreement offers important continuity for the commonly used business systems which support critical government services that serve Australians.

"This arrangement is the right fit for the current context and requirements for its participating agencies," he said.

The arrangement includes systems needed during the response to the pandemic and disaster events, and includes training and certifications to support digital capability across government.

The agency and IBM are also discussing opportunities to use emerging technologies such as quantum computing and artificial intelligence.

"Under this arrangement, IBM Australia will continue supporting the Australian government in their work to drive accelerated adoption of innovative technology to modernise government services," Nicholas Flood, managing director of IBM Australia, said.

The arrangement was negotiated and signed by the DTA, the Australian Taxation Office, Department of Defence, Department of Home Affairs and Services Australia.

IBM products and services covered by the new arrangement include hardware, software, cloud services and professional services.