The Crown Commercial Service (CCS) is aiming to set up a new public sector procurement framework for digital and legacy applications services (DALAS).
It has published a prior information notice for suppliers indicating that the arrangement could be worth up to a highly lucrative £4.5 billion across its five lots.
The move has been prompted by the need of HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC), with which CCS is working, to develop a new commercial approach for its future requirements in digital application services as it moves away from legacy technologies and replaces contracts due to expire up to January 2025.
But the framework will also be open to other central government departments and the wider public sector.
It will consist of five lots, the first for IT services such as capability analysis, enterprise architecture advice and project based design and delivery services.
Lot two will be split into two sub-lots for different elements of large scale digital, integration and programme development services, while lot three will cover digital, application and integration run services.
The fourth will also be divided into two, for elements of multi-product configuration services, and the fifth is for capability pipeline services, involving training in a number of areas.
CCS plans to publish the contract notice in mid-September following a series of market engagement events.