San Diego OKs $667M outsourcing deal

San Diego County officials Tuesday approved a US$667 million IT outsourcing contract with Northrop Grumman Information Technology and hope to complete a transition to the new contractor by year's end.

Overseeing this major shift in outsourcing contractors is Michael Moore, CIO for San Diego County, who took that post three years ago -- well after the initial seven-year contract with Computer Sciences Corp. was signed. Northrop Grumman won the new contract after it was put out to bid.

The deal made Tuesday covers IT services for the 17,000-employee county government, which operates on a $4 billion budget.

To complete the transition, Moore will be relying on a lengthy list of provisions approved in the 1999 contract that detail the "disentanglement" process. This spells out how the outgoing and incoming contractors are to cooperate regarding access to tools, assets and personnel. The first milestone will be the transition of the help desk in April, followed by applications, desktops and networks, and finally a transition of the data center in October to Northrop Grumman.

"I think they did a phenomenal job in 1999, and that's why I'm fairly comfortable that we got a very low-risk transition," said Moore.

The shift won't result in any platform changes, but it will bring changes for the 305 CSC workers. Those employees, many of whom worked for the county prior to the first outsourcing agreement, will now be interviewed for jobs with Northrop Grumman.