More than 20 suppliers have been included in a services framework agreement set up by the soon to be abolished education ICT agency.
Becta has divided the framework into two lots. The first covers network technologies, which will incorporate infrastructure services and mobile connectivity services, and the second covers ICT integration services.
In a contract award notice in the Official Journal of the European Union on 29 November, Becta says that the core elements of the network technologies lot "represent the technology set that underpins the teaching, learning and management activities" within education bodies.
The integrated services lot includes the provision and supply of these services, but will also cover the integration of existing or third-party provided services.
"Integration in this context will also include customisation and innovation services integration," says the agency.
The contractors awarded places on the framework are: Arvato AG; Capita Business Services; Centerprise International; Civica; CSE; Dell; Ergo Computing; European Electronique; Gaia Technologies; Joskos Solutions; Mass Consultants; Misco; Mouchel; Northgate; Redstone; RM; Tribal; Tribune Business Systems; Viglen; Virtue Technologies; XMA; Zentek Solutions; Bovis Lend Lease; Pearson Education; and Babcock 4S.
Stephen Lucey, executive director of strategic technologies at Becta, said: "The framework has been designed to maximise flexibility allowing schools, colleges and training providers to purchase services designed to meet their own unique local circumstances. ICT Services seeks to deliver improved reliability in educational ICT, reduce costs, improve operational efficiency and reduce the environmental impact of ICT services."
Alan Mo, principle analyst at Kable, said: "Many major suppliers doubted the value of engaging with the doomed Becta on this framework, while others were put off by an evaluation process which gave a high weighting to specialised capabilities.
"More broadly, the schools market is becoming increasingly fragmented and opportunities for bulk deals across multiple schools are currently few. A strong and localised direct sales team is probably the most important asset for building business in this market."
This article was originally published at Kable.
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