A $50 million change to ATO's IT overhaul

Spending increase for Change Program

Spending on the massive Change Program currently underway at the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has increased by $50 million to $500 million.

An ATO spokesperson has confirmed spending on the wide-ranging IT overhaul which began in 2004 has increased to cope with shifts in government policy.

Last month the ATO inked a $224 million contract with Accenture to rollout a new superannuation platform throughout 2007.

This deal is in addition to a $253 million contract awarded to Accenture under the program in 2004.

As part of the ATO's ambitious overhaul, the agency is retiring a range of ageing big iron infrastructures, including its IBM Z series mainframe CICS and DB2 systems - some of which are more than 20 years old.

The agency has just completed the second phase of the program which involved extending its Siebel CRM system to more than 7000 staff and consolidating 180 case management systems.

The single system replaced up to 12 different screens, according to ATO's second commissioner for IT, Greg Farr.

Completion of this part of the program paves the way for the final phase which will see the mainframe transaction processing software upgraded to allow integration of data across tax types.

"All those processing and accounting applications we have will be replaced with integrated core processing systems, so it doesn't matter what tax type it is, it will be a single account," he said.

This part of the program will reach completion in July 2008.

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