Public Services > Devolved

CGI set to land £300m+ digital and IT services deal in Glasgow

David Bicknell Published 13 April 2017

Outline business case will go before council members on April 20, with full business case set to follow; CGI deal would succeed Access contract with Serco which ends next March


Glasgow City Council looks set to agree a multi-million pound deal with CGI to provide IT and digital; services for the council.

The contract, likely to be for an initial seven-year term, with a further five-year option, is understood to be worth between £300m and £400m. It will succeed an IT services contract between Glasgow and Serco Group under a joint venture partnership, Access, which comes to an end on March 31 next year, and which cannot be extended.

It is understood a report that is due to be put before council members next week will recommend the partnership with CGI under the same framework IT services deal under which CGI contracted with the City of Edinburgh and then Scottish Borders councils.  The Outline Business Case will go before the council’s Executive Committee on Thursday, April 20. If approved, a full business case will then be developed over the summer, with a new service due in place by April 2018

The proposed deal with CGI is expected to not only secure support for the council’s own IT systems, but also underpin a “step change” in digital services, boosting education, health and jobs.

If the deal is approved, the partnership will guarantee the jobs, pensions and pay and conditions of the current workforce, the council said. Staff currently seconded from Glasgow City Council to Access would be able to retain that status, if they choose to, remaining as council employees, but seconded to CGI.

CGI is already a significant employer in Glasgow, opening an Open Digital Centre at the Innovo building in George Street in the city, which is currently due to expand from 140 to 250 staff.

The firm is also investing in developing a skilled city workforce in the longer-term by providing employment and training opportunities for local young people. This includes sponsoring a degree programme at Glasgow Caledonian University, which enables students to study while developing a career with CGI.

Glasgow City Council chief executive Annemarie O’ Donnell said, “We believe we can transform digital services across Glasgow.

“Redesigning our IT provision presents the opportunity to put the service at the heart of securing world-class digital learning in our schools - and at the forefront of breaking down the city’s digital divide.

“We can deliver technology which improves the lives of our vulnerable citizens and supports our schools and new businesses with world-class network infrastructure. And we can support skills, jobs and even the health of our most vulnerable citizens.”

Reports due to be published by the council today are expected to highlight an array of community, economic and social benefits that would be delivered over the next seven years with a focus on creating a “digital revolution” in city classrooms.

Potential benefits it is understood a CGI deal would bring include:


  • A dedicated Digital Learning team will be created to ensure Glasgow’s pupils benefit from world-class facilities and the best technological learning environment in the country.
  • All pupils from P6 onwards will be given their own tablet device.
  • New infrastructure to make Glasgow’s schools the best connected in the UK – with all learners able to use their own devices.

Health and Care

  • Increased support for data analysis to improve success rates in early intervention and better identify where assistive technology could help vulnerable people.
  • Improved access to technology to enable new ways of delivery care services; allowing more people to receive care in their own home.

Jobs and Business

  • Transform the job prospects of at least 700 Glaswegians by sponsoring software development training for 100 long-term unemployed people every year.
  • Ensure local SMEs receive business worth at 25% of all contract spend by 2021.

Customer Service

  • Dramatically increase the number of customer transactions that can be completed online – meeting customer expectations and reducing costs.
  • Improved high-speed and wireless connectivity for all city libraries, allowing digitally deprived citizens to access services and other residents and visitors to use their own devices.

Digital inclusion

  • Tackle the digital divide by working with a local social enterprise to put decommissioned council devices into the hands of those without access to technology.

The Edinburgh framework contract - agreed in August 2015 – was a seven-year £186m transformational outsourced ICT services deal which anticipated efficiency and cost savings of £45m over the seven year term.

The framework was then adopted by Scottish Borders Council which concluded its own separate deal with CGI valued at £92.5m over a 13-year term. The £300m+ Glasgow contract with CGI would follow under the same framework deal.

At the same time as discussing CGI’s bid, Glasgow has been having to tread on eggshells over the last couple of months over its relationship with Serco.

It is understood that Glasgow only resumed discussions with CGI in mid-February having had to pause work in order to protect the integrity of the ongoing procurement process, following the threat of a legal challenge from Serco.

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