AR 2013-14 Chief Executive Report

Over the past 12 months CenITex has continued to deliver high-quality ICT services while successfully responding to a challenging financial environment and positioning the organisation to transition the delivery of ICT services to the private sector.

CenITex broke even this year realising a $7 million turnaround through stringent cost control and the hard work of our managers and staff.

Our people have shown tremendous resilience during a period of intense change and have continued to operate effectively to maintain the quality and cost effectiveness of our services. Their efforts deserve special mention.

In 2013-14 we again met our service benchmark of 99.8 per cent availability for our workplace and application hosting services, we saw a reduction of 20 per cent in the number of “severity 1” outages and again achieved a high level of satisfaction across our customers who engaged with our Service Desk or second level support.

We made significant progress through Program Evolve in the planned transition of CenITex services to the private sector on behalf of our customers. We successfully completed an Expression of Interest and held collaborative dialogue with vendors and customers, which gave us a much deeper understanding of how best to ask the market for the services we deliver to our customers. The feedback has informed the preparation of a Request for Proposal (RFP).

To enable a clear separation between CenITex's current responsibilities for ongoing service delivery and outsourcing these services, Program Evolve will move organisationally from under the CenITex Board to the Department of State Development, Business and Industry (DSDBI) as of 1 July 2014. The Victorian Government, in May 2014, announced the allocation of $6 million within the Victorian Budget 2014-15 to DSDBI to finalise the RFP process. We expect that the RFP will be issued in the coming financial year and that CenITex will start transition in 2015.

Infrastructure Improvement

A key factor in our delivery against agreed service levels has been an aggressive focus on risk management and a targeting of infrastructure refresh investment in those areas that risk assessment identified as most relevant for service availability and customer satisfaction. In the past year, we implemented major core network, data centre and other infrastructure improvements which better support our customers’ ICT needs, including:
consolidation of all legacy storage area networks (SAN) within the Government Shared Platform (GSP)onto a NetApp platform, marking the culmination of two year’s work with over a petabyte of storage migrated and consolidated to a single vendor platform.
upgrading of our Burwood and Ballarat data centres to include new infrastructure, firewalls, switches and load balancers.
consolidation of VicGov identity management infrastructure, simplifying directory architecture and significantly reducing operational costs through the removal of 82 servers.
introduction of a new self-service network password reset service to enable users to reset their passwords without having to contact our Service Desk.
migration of over 2500 GSP customers from the mSuite mobility solution for smartphones and tablets to the better integrated and cost effective Traveler solution.

In other major outcomes, we:

  • now have five Victorian Government department customers on the GSP.
  • insourced, consolidated and standardised technologies over the past two and a half years which now deliver recurring savings or avoided costs of $10 million per annum.
  • completed the refresh of core switches at our two main data centres in Burwood and Ballarat.
  • finalised major machinery of government changes, completing the relocation of 1100 staff to new department offices and the migration of staff desktops to new departmental desktop environments.
  • successfully completed Program Evolve’s Expression of Interest and Collaborative Dialogue phases of the procurement process to transition CenITex’s delivery of ICT services to Victorian Government departments to the private sector; prepared the RFP and draft contract for review, and developed a draft Target State Operating Model.

Customer initiatives

We finalised 384 projects during the year for a total value of $10.8 million. Some of our significant customer projects included:

  • completion of planning and design phases for migration of the Department of Transport, Planning & Local Infrastructure desktop environment from Windows XP to a single Windows 7 Standard Operating Environment (SOE).
  • major upgrade of the directory services server to Windows Server 2012 for the Department of Justice, including the design and installation of new infrastructure; and successful deployment of a Lotus Notes upgrade to all departmental users.
  • extension of the Department of Environment and Primary Industries user identity management process to the GSP by transferring an Active Directory service and an Active Directory Federation service to the GSP.
  • supported the Department of Human Services to develop an infrastructure platform for the planned upgrade of the department’s Integrated Client and Case Management system, which supports the department’s child protection activities.

Staff

In 2013-14 we continued to build capabilities across the organisation and develop staff skills through training and development courses. In addition to online training programs, courses covering management development, workplace effectiveness, team building, specialist technical areas and occupational health and safety attracted a total of 430 employees. An externally delivered employee assistance program was also available to staff.

I would like to recognise the professionalism and resilience shown by our people during the past year. It has been a period of significant change and they have responded in a manner which you would expect of people who take deep pride in delivering quality services to their customers and ultimately the Victorian community.

Financial Outcome

The 2013-14 year has been financially challenging but successful.

Earnings before depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) was $22.3 million, representing a $5.4 million improvement on 2012-13. The result was achieved despite a fall in revenue caused, in the main, by a reduction in our customer base of more than 2700 desktops (7.9 per cent). Importantly, we met budget.

This year we continued to implement and strengthen our financial controls and accountability, particularly in relation to procurement and recruitment.

Outlook

Our goal is to successfully transition CenITex services to the private sector on behalf of customers while maintaining the stability of our services, ensuring financial solvency and supporting our people through the transition process.

Our Chairman, Grant Hehir, stepped down this year, briefly replaced by Victoria’s Chief Technology Advocate Grantly Mailes. Mr Mailes handed over the Chair to Randall Straw who was joined on our Board by Dr Richard Tait, Conrad Harvey and Johanna Barker. The organisation is well served by the collective experience of the Board.

I sincerely thank management and staff for delivering services to such a high level and so consistently in 2013-14. Their work to meet customer expectations while managing major changes is as impressive as it is successful. My thanks also to our customers for their on-going support.

The coming year will continue to be one of significant challenge, but I am confident that we will maintain our high standard of day-to-day services while we successfully transition these services to the private sector. I look forward to working with staff and customers to deliver these important outcomes.

image of signature of Michael Vanderheide

Michael Vanderheide
Chief Executive