Feeds

IBM and Somerset council in tiff over South West One venture

Blues for Big Blue's blue-light IT setup

Choosing a cloud hosting partner with confidence

IBM and Somerset County council are currently in a dispute over their joint venture outsourcing company South West One.

SW1's just issued annual report for 2011 said that a mediation session was held between the two organisations on the 4 and 5 July this year, but they couldn't reach any agreement.

"No settlement has been reached and accordingly the board will be reviewing which of the remaining options in the contractual procedure should now be pursued," the report said.

South West One told The Reg that it does not comment on the details of disputes with partners.

The venture, which has Somerset County Council as the main public partner and IBM as the owner along with Taunton Deane Borough Council and the Avon and Somerset Police Authority, has run into a number of problems since it was set up in October 2007.

The year after it launched, workers' union Unison lodged a complaint with an employment tribunal claiming the venture was unfair because the full details of the staff transfer into a private company weren't revealed.

Last year, Somerset County Council publicly criticised South West One, claiming that sue savings targets weren't met, there were problems with the implementation of a new SAP software system and staff were unsure who they were working for.

The council said it had been renegotiating the contract for a few months, after a review the year earlier by the newly empowered Conservative Party also indicated that the savings weren't good enough.

The South West One annual report also pointed to problems with funding, saying that parties to the venture had been hit up for more cash by the issues.

The venture, which is 75 per cent owned by IBM, had to get a mate's rate loan from Big Blue of £10m in February to underwrite its debts.

South West One was set up to save the public bodies money on their IT projects. So far, the venture claims to have delivered savings of £13.46m, according to the report. When it started, the partnership promised £195m worth of savings over ten years. ®

Security for virtualized datacentres

More from The Register

next story
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
The 'fun-nification' of computer education – good idea?
Compulsory code schools, luvvies love it, but what about Maths and Physics?
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Cloud and hybrid-cloud data protection for VMware
Learn how quick and easy it is to configure backups and perform restores for VMware environments.
Three 1TB solid state scorchers up for grabs
Big SSDs can be expensive but think big and think free because you could be the lucky winner of one of three 1TB Samsung SSD 840 EVO drives that we’re giving away worth over £300 apiece.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.