Somerset County council is bringing its IT functions back in-house, ending its outsourcing contract with joint venture Southwest One a year early.
Southwest One – 75% owned by IBM working in partnership with the county council, Taunton Deane Borough Council and Avon and Somerset Police – currently handles back office and admin tasks.
A troubled relationship
The arrangement was earmarked to create savings of £180m over the course of the 10-year contract.
The outsourcing partnership sued the council for £25m back in 2012 after it claimed claimed Southwest One wasn’t delivering the promised savings.
The claim was eventually settled out of court for £5.9m.
Early exit favoured
“This is an important decision and has been taken after a great deal of consideration,” Leader of the Council, Councillor John Osman told Taunton’s Apple FM.
“Having carefully weighed up the benefits and costs of letting the contract run its course or leaving it early, we have concluded that an early exit is in the best interests of the County Council and its tax payers.
“Our partners in Southwest One have been kept informed and we will be working closely with IBM and Southwest One to make the transfer back of services as smooth as possible.”
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