Contract covering 13 years includes investment in ICT centre of excellence and broadband upgrade
Scottish Borders Council has taken on IT and business process services firm CGI Group as its digital services partner, signing a 13-year contract valued at £92 million.
The agreement involves a big inward investment plan that the council said could inject more than £100 million into the local economy.
The more immediate digital delivery elements of the contract include the provision of a new enterprise resource planning solution to replace Scottish Borders' existing finance and HR systems, and a new digital platform to improve interactions with the public.
But the council has highlighted a plan to set up a Scottish ICT Delivery Centre of Excellence within its area, pointing to the development of Borders Railway as helping to make it possible.
It also flagged up that all of its 49 ICT staff being able to continue working locally, a projection of 200 new jobs in the area, and the creation of a series of apprenticeships with Borders College.
In addition, CGI will unbundle six telephone exchanges in the Borders to provide high speed broadband for schools, businesses and the local community.
David Parker, the council's leader, said: “This is a landmark deal for the Scottish Borders as we join forces with one of the leading IT companies in the world to offer a once in a generation transformational opportunity for the region.
“For CGI to choose the Scottish Borders to base their second UK Service Centre is a genuinely exciting opportunity. Not only does it mean our existing ICT staff will remain in the Borders, but it will also bring a wide range of benefits and opportunities.”
The council has a corporate transformation programme that includes making more use of mobile technology, streamlining processes, and developing more effective information sharing with partners.
Image: CGI UK president Tim Gregory and councillor David Parker, from Scottish Borders Council