After enduring a summer of industrial unrest and union agitation, Bank of Ireland has finally put pen to paper on a seven-year $600 million IT outsourcing contract with Hewlett Packard (HP).
Bank of Ireland was ready to sign the contract in April this year, but the deal was nearly derailed when the bank's IT staff staged a 24-hour walk out and threatened further strike action in protest at the plans to outsource IT functions and transfer employees to HP.
Staff and union members called off industrial action after agreeing to improved terms and conditions including a one-off payment of €5,500 and job security for two years for the 500 employees who will transfer to HP under the deal, with an option for redeployment within the bank for a further five years. Affected staff will also keep pensions rights and other benefits.
Under the contract, which is the largest outsourcing deal ever in Ireland, HP Services will manage the bank's entire IT infrastructure, including desktop systems, servers, mainframes, local area networks and printing operations. The vendor also will provide service desk and facilities management services.
Cyril Dunne, group chief information office, Bank of Ireland, says: "We chose HP because of its proven managed services capability, its presence as a large IT services provider in Ireland and its attractive plan for the transfer and subsequent welfare of Bank of Ireland's IT staff."