The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Michael McGrath TD, has today, 25th November 2022, announced that the Government of Ireland had entered into a Memorandum of Understand (MoU) with Microsoft Ireland that will support the Government's ongoing digital transformation agenda.
The MoU treats the Government of Ireland as a single customer, enabling Public Service organisations to avail of consistent, preferential Government discounts on selected Modern Workplace cloud based solutions while supporting the Government's digital transformation ambition. The 3-year agreement can into effect on 1st November 2022.
The agreement also includes access to two Microsoft programs on a pro bono basis:
Microsoft's Skilling and Certification Program is designed to build on, improve and certify to industry recognised standards, Public Service organisations' technical skills and expertise to support their delivery on digital services.
Microsoft's Product Innovation Program is intended to maximise the benefits for Government of its investment in Microsoft technology and demonstrate how Modern Workplace technology can enable the adoption of digital citizen service and digital transformation. Projects will initially focus on digital challenges around cybersecurity, sustainability, and the hybrid workplace.
The Agreement is open to all Public Service organisations, allowing smaller scale Public Service organisations access to discounts and the benefits of the two pro bono programs for the first time. However, Public Service organisations will still be required to procure products covered by the Agreement in compliance with public procurement regulations and guidelines.
Speaking about the Agreement, Minister McGrath said:
"This agreement recognises the significance of cloud computing to the Irish public sector as it continues its digital transformation. It will support our digital journey as we aim to further modernise technology, strengthen cyber defence, improve digital skills and embed a culture of innovation."
Minister of State with responsibility for Public Procurement and eGovernment, Ossian Smyth TD said:
"This shows the Government's determination to drive digital change as well as adopt value for money technologies that improve services and ensure public service staff have the digital tools they need, now and in the future."
Frank O'Donnell, Public Sector Lead, Microsoft Ireland said:
"The Microsoft Government Agreement means value for money for public sector bodies on the use of Microsoft platforms to accelerate digital transformation across Public Sector. The Agreement is particularly timely in light of the increasing prevalence of hybrid working and provides enhanced ability to meet needs of citizens adopting digital solutions."
Notes for Editors
- The Agreement will support Government's ongoing digital transformation
- Public Service organisations will benefit from competitive commercial terms
- Microsoft Ireland will provide access on a pro bono basis to a Skilling and Certification Program which will support digital upskilling across many Public Service organisations
- Microsoft will provide access to a Product Innovation Program that is intended to enable Public Service organisations to maximise the benefits of their investment in Microsoft technology to enable the adoption of digital citizen services.