Sopra Steria gets £££££££s to manage cops' Oracle e-Biz suite in Oracle's cloud in Cleveland, UK

The bad guys looking after the good guys... or is that the other way round? Life's so complicated


Cleveland Police in northeast England has handed a £4.2m contract to incumbent IT integrator and outsourcing provider Sopra Steria to host and maintain its Oracle E-business Suite applications in Big Red's cloud.

The French IT services biz, which until recently ran the police service's IT operations, has won the three-year contract for managed services of the force's Oracle EBS and Capita Duty Management system.

Although the contract value was estimated at nearly £17m in a tender notice, a spokeswoman for the Police and Crime Commissioner for Cleveland said this had been published in error.

She explained the true contract value was £4.2m but offered no explanation as to why it had increased from the initial £2.5m published in April's competitive tender notice.

As part of its £175m outsourcing agreement signed in 2010, Steria (as it was then, before slamming into Sopra) upgraded Cleveland Police's Origin HR to Oracle EBS for HR, finance, and procurement. The contract also incorporated the Capita duty management system. The wider business process outsourcing element saw Steria running the control room and community justice department.

In a Decision Record Form dated from August 2020 [PDF], the police force said the version of EBS it used was "aged and will not be supported after 2021."

As the Sopra Steria outsourcing contract ended 30 September 2020, IT services were due to novate to the police and crime commissioners' office, along with responsibility for software licensing, support and hardware.

In the final months of its IT outsourcing agreement with the force, Sopra Steria was due to "complete a technical change where the current system has been upgraded and re-platformed to the Oracle Cloud Infrastructure," the form said.

"A new contract is required to be put in place in advance of 30 September to ensure that Oracle EBS and Capita System are fully licensed and supported," it added. The agreement would include support and licensing, upgrades, and patching.

Although 61 suppliers expressed an interest in the contract, 17 cancelled their interest during the early procurement process for reasons unknown. Six suppliers submitted responses by 26 June deadline. Two of these had not submitted compliant responses, while two were compliant, but had quality scores below the 30 per cent threshold.

It was estimated Oracle licensing would be worth 33 per cent of the bid, while Capita licences would be 17 per cent. Oracle licensing was estimated at £368,000 per year, more than £1m over the three-year contract. The force was also set to carry out a license audit during the transition.

So Sopra Steria's outsourcing deal ended just after it re-platformed the application and it picked up a managed service arrangement to keep running it, all part of a "transparent and competitive procurement exercise", the spokeswoman said.

But maybe not everyone will be happy. The outsourcing decision made a decade ago attracted criticism as it was supposed to avoid job losses, but in 2012, Sopra Steria made 30 people redundant, a process Unison took exception to [PDF].

The union said contractual terms meant Cleveland Police was "responsible for picking up the bill for redundancies". Among other "issues" cited, Unison criticised the force over a "lack of transparency and evidence of saving made as a result of claims of 'commercial confidentiality'."

All the outsourcing services provided under the 10-year Sopra Steria deal have now been transferred back in-house, the spokeswoman said - all, that is, aside from the latest Oracle cloud service. ®

Similar topics


Other stories you might like

  • Everything you wanted to know about modern network congestion control but were perhaps too afraid to ask

    In which a little unfairness can be quite beneficial

    Systems Approach It’s hard not to be amazed by the amount of active research on congestion control over the past 30-plus years. From theory to practice, and with more than its fair share of flame wars, the question of how to manage congestion in the network is a technical challenge that resists an optimal solution while offering countless options for incremental improvement.

    This seems like a good time to take stock of where we are, and ask ourselves what might happen next.

    Congestion control is fundamentally an issue of resource allocation — trying to meet the competing demands that applications have for resources (in a network, these are primarily link bandwidth and router buffers), which ultimately reduces to deciding when to say no and to whom. The best framing of the problem I know traces back to a paper [PDF] by Frank Kelly in 1997, when he characterized congestion control as “a distributed algorithm to share network resources among competing sources, where the goal is to choose source rate so as to maximize aggregate source utility subject to capacity constraints.”

    Continue reading
  • How business makes streaming faster and cheaper with CDN and HESP support

    Ensure a high video streaming transmission rate

    Paid Post Here is everything about how the HESP integration helps CDN and the streaming platform by G-Core Labs ensure a high video streaming transmission rate for e-sports and gaming, efficient scalability for e-learning and telemedicine and high quality and minimum latencies for online streams, media and TV broadcasters.

    HESP (High Efficiency Stream Protocol) is a brand new adaptive video streaming protocol. It allows delivery of content with latencies of up to 2 seconds without compromising video quality and broadcasting stability. Unlike comparable solutions, this protocol requires less bandwidth for streaming, which allows businesses to save a lot of money on delivery of content to a large audience.

    Since HESP is based on HTTP, it is suitable for video transmission over CDNs. G-Core Labs was among the world’s first companies to have embedded this protocol in its CDN. With 120 points of presence across 5 continents and over 6,000 peer-to-peer partners, this allows a service provider to deliver videos to millions of viewers, to any devices, anywhere in the world without compromising even 8K video quality. And all this comes at a minimum streaming cost.

    Continue reading
  • Cisco deprecates Microsoft management integrations for UCS servers

    Working on Azure integration – but not there yet

    Cisco has deprecated support for some third-party management integrations for its UCS servers, and emerged unable to play nice with Microsoft's most recent offerings.

    Late last week the server contender slipped out an end-of-life notice [PDF] for integrations with Microsoft System Center's Configuration Manager, Operations Manager, and Virtual Machine Manager. Support for plugins to VMware vCenter Orchestrator and vRealize Orchestrator have also been taken out behind an empty rack with a shotgun.

    The Register inquired about the deprecations, and has good news and bad news.

    Continue reading
  • Protonmail celebrates Swiss court victory exempting it from telco data retention laws

    Doesn't stop local courts' surveillance orders, though

    Encrypted email provider Protonmail has hailed a recent Swiss legal ruling as a "victory for privacy," after winning a lawsuit that sees it exempted from data retention laws in the mountainous realm.

    Referring to a previous ruling that exempted instant messaging services from data capture and storage laws, the Protonmail team said this week: "Together, these two rulings are a victory for privacy in Switzerland as many Swiss companies are now exempted from handing over certain user information in response to Swiss legal orders."

    Switzerland's Federal Administrative Court ruled on October 22 that email providers in Switzerland are not considered telecommunications providers under Swiss law, thereby removing them from the scope of data retention requirements imposed on telcos.

    Continue reading
  • Japan picks AWS and Google for first gov cloud push

    Local players passed over for Digital Agency’s first project

    Japan's Digital Agency has picked Amazon Web Services and Google Cloud for its first big reform push.

    The Agency started operations in September 2021, years after efforts like the UK's Government Digital Service (GDS) or Australia's Digital Transformation Agency (DTA). The body was a signature reform initiated by Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga, who spent his year-long stint in the top job trying to curb Japan's reliance on paper documents, manual processes, and faxes. Japan's many government agencies also operated their websites independently of each other, most with their own design and interface.

    The new Agency therefore has a remit to "cut across all ministries" and "provide services that are driven not toward ministries, agency, laws, or systems, but toward users and to improve user-experience".

    Continue reading
  • Singaporean minister touts internet 'kill switch' that finds kids reading net nasties and cuts 'em off ASAP

    Fancies a real-time crowdsourced content rating scheme too

    A Minister in the Singapore government has suggested the creation of an internet kill switch that would prevent minors from reading questionable material online – perhaps using ratings of content created in real time by crowdsourced contributors.

    "The post-COVID world will bring new challenges globally, including to us in the security arena," said Minister for Defence Dr Ng Eng Hen at a Tuesday ceremony to award the city-state's 2021 Defense Technology Prize.

    "For operations, the SAF (Singapore Armed Force) has to expand its capabilities in the digital domain. Whether for administrative or operational purposes, I think that we will need to leverage technology to the maximum," he declared.

    Continue reading
  • China Telecom booted out of USA as Feds worry it could disrupt or spy on local networks

    FCC urges more action against Huawei and DJI, too

    The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has terminated China Telecom's authority to provide communications services in the USA.

    In its announcement of the termination, the government agency explained the decision is necessary because the national security environment has changed in the years since 2002. That was when China Telecom was first allowed to operate in the USA.

    The FCC now believes – partly based on classified advice from national security agencies – that China Telecom can "access, store, disrupt, and/or misroute US communications, which in turn allow them to engage in espionage and other harmful activities against the United States." And because China Telecom is state-controlled, China's government can compel the carrier to act as it sees fit, without judicial review or oversight.

    Continue reading
  • Qualcomm gets news of modest Snapdragons out of the way before next month's big chip launch

    A little more oomph coming for cheaper smartphones

    Budget smartphones these days do OK with 5G though lack performance in other areas, and so Qualcomm has promised some system-on-chips to give these modest devices some more oomph.

    The processors, announced on Tuesday for entry and mid-range 5G smartphones, also clears the deck for big chip announcements Qualcomm is expected to make at its Snapdragon Tech Summit starting at the end of next month.

    The 6nm Snapdragon 695 5G, unveiled this week, is a successor to the 8nm 690 5G used in the OnePlus Nord N10 5G, which is priced under $300, and various other handhelds.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021