The Good, the Bad, the Ugly

Each week, news editor Sandra Rossi combs her in-box for the best and worst the industry delivers. Tipsters receive a GBU mug, reserved exclusively for those in the know who share their insights with her for Computerworld readers.

IT managers concerned about the current climate of insecurity can look to their US counterparts for "calm and reasonable" guidance. Many are relocating server farms underground in the wake of terrorist attacks. In fact, some are relocating server farms in holes 26 metres underground to protect data and equipment. Underground Secure Data Centre Operations is selling rack space in a 6771sq metre abandoned mine near Michigan. It seems above-ground locations have lost their appeal since September 11 and IT execs are revisiting 1960's-style bunkers and bomb shelters.

Good

Asked about the exorbitant fees paid by government agencies under IT outsourcing agreements, a senior NEC executive told GBU: "We may only charge $45 to relocate a desktop phone, but by the time the likes of CSC and EDS have presented the bill, it's $110. NEC is at the bottom of the food chain." Big points for honesty!

Bad

Surprise, surprise: less than a week after the Government's re-election win, the sale of Telstra is already on the agenda. Telstra chairman Bob Mansfield is seeking a meeting with the Federal Government to finalise privatisation plans for the company. At its AGM last week the board declared its full support for privatisation, adding "we look forward to discussions with the Federal Government to ascertain its plans on this critically important matter." In pre-election mode the government promised not to proceed with a fire sale until services were improved.

Ugly

The ACTU has issued a "roll call of shame", listing recent job losses across Australia including up to 2000 being axed at Qantas. The long list of 30 companies shedding jobs include up to 900 positions at Optus, 1460 at Pacific Dunlop and 800 at Mitsubishi, just to name a few. If that's not enough the union body also attached a list of jobs "under threat".

There are many ways of conveying a message; some are sensitive, some have as much HR nous as a Mack truck. In the latter category, you know you're about to be retrenched when you arrive at work and your e-mail is turned off. That's the way it happened recently at one of the telcos. There are many ways of conveying a message; some are sensitive, some have as much HR nous as a Mack truck. In the latter category, you know you're about to be retrenched when you arrive at work and your e-mail is turned off. That's the way it happened recently at one of the telcos.

* E-mail your hot news tips to Sandra_Rossi@idg.com.au and receive an exclusive GBU mug.

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More about ACTUCSC AustraliaEDS AustraliaMitsubishi AustraliaNECOptusPacific DunlopQantasTelstra Corporation

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