BHP Billiton sidesteps CSC in WAN deal

Computer Science Corporation's (CSC) $700 million outsourcing deal with BHP Billiton has hit a rough spot, with IT employees suggesting the partnership is "in chaos".

CSC beat rival EDS to win the seven-year outsourcing deal with BHP IT, as it then was, which was announced in May 2000.

Sources who spoke to Computerworld said evidence of the rift is BHP Billiton's decision to tender out its entire Wide Area Network to Equant, replacing CSC.

While the deal has not been formally announced, BHP Billiton VP and global account executive Ken Foster told CW the WAN contract represents only a very small portion of its outsourcing agreement with CSC.

"CSC continues to maintain a good relationship with BHP Billiton and continues to assist it in the overall management and governance of its network environment," he said.

Equant's PR agency, which contacted CW, was unwilling to comment on the contract win because, "We have a strict policy of not commenting on rumour or speculation".

Under the outsourcing deal, CSC provides integrated IT services including consulting and systems integration. When the deal was announced CSC said it expects to generate a 20 per cent reduction in costs; however, employees, (who were on BHP Billiton's staff transferring to CSC as part of the deal) claim they are suffering under "dramatically degraded services".

A CSC spokesperson denied the deal has hit a rough spot or that service levels have dropped.

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