EDS a $500m winner as Telstra targets billing again

Telstra has had another shot at sorting out its billing systems by granting EDS a five-year, $A500 million outsourcing contract. The latest deal covers development and maintenance of Telstra's billing activities and shared databases, a company statement explained. Telstra staff affected by the contract have been offered employment with EDS at - as the statement stressed - "conditions equal to or better than their current arrangements with Telstra".

Telstra claimed the shift of responsibility for the IT functions to EDS followed its adoption last year of a new IT model where accountability for IT management has been devolved to each strategic business unit. The upshot of the change is that EDS will now be required to liaise directly with each of the strategic business units.

In this instance, Telstra expects the outsourcing to bring a number of benefits, including a significant reduction in IT development and maintenance costs; a faster speed-to-market of IT solutions that support customer-focused systems; and an improvement in "the overall quality of delivery".

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