The contract, awarded to the Blue Bell, Pennsylvania-based company following a 10-month bidding process, provides both network and desktop services to the city and its 42 departments, including police, aviation, and emergency communications.
Contracted services will include desktop configuration, asset management, maintenance, remote network management, help desk, and training services.
City officials said outsourcing will enable them to focus on strategic IT plans, including automating inspections and improving tax and licensing services, as well as boosting services to their internal computer users.
A major provider of computer hardware and software, Unisys is now transforming itself into a computer services firm. IT services, including outsourcing, consulting, and systems integration, accounted for 67 percent of Unisys's 1998 revenue, the company said. Unisys's deal today represents a growing public sector trend toward outsourcing to private vendors in an effort to cut costs and eliminate future hiring and management headaches.
Other recent moves in that direction include the State of Connecticut's tentative $1 billion outsourcing contract with Electronic Data Systems and Computer Sciences' announcement today that the company, along with Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), is discussing an IT outsourcing agreement with San Diego County.