Network Rail has signed framework agreements with five major suppliers to simplify its IT and computing relationships.
It has struck deals with Accenture, BAE Systems Detica, Cognizant, CSC and TCS on what Network Rail calls the new ‘zero-value IT Solutions and System Integrator framework agreements.”
The company currently works with more than 270 individual IT suppliers and manages a variety of systems of varying complexity, including some that were designed as far back as the 1970s.
“We run one of the busiest railway networks in the world and rely heavily on IT to keep everything moving,” said Network Rail’s chief information officer Susan Cooklin.
“By creating this framework we will be able to scale more flexibly our resources to meet demand, while retaining our vital assurance role. In this way we can improve our efficiency while continuing to allow 24,000 trains a day across the rail network.”
The suppliers will be responsible for supporting Network Rail’s planned change programmes and will supply technology to support back-office services, including finance, HR and IS management; stakeholder relationship management; corporate compliance; logistics and property management; and infrastructure lifecycle management.
They will also support corporate services, network operations, asset management and investment projects.
The potential value of the three four-year framework deals has not been disclosed.
In January, Network Rail admitted it was planning to cut 4,000 jobs to save £250m a year by centralising operations.