Tuesday, 16 September 2014 13:00

Drupal agency Acquia wins govt websites contract Featured

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Acquia has won a federal government contract to build up to 450 websites using the open-source Drupal software. The resulting CMS will be known as govCMS.

The agreement is a four-year one, initially over two years and then extendable twice by a year at a time. The government's conservative estimate is that it needs 180 websites but it has an ambitious target of 450.

Acquia has signed the deal with the Department of Finance — the liaison for all other agencies and departments — but will use its partner network of more than 50 Drupal delivery agencies in Australia.

The company's Asia-Pacific and Japan director, Chris Harrop, was unwilling to offer any estimate of how much the contract would run to.

But a spokesman from the Department of Finance said govCMS would be offered on a subscription basis to Commonwealth Government entities, therefore expenditure against the contract would be dependent upon demand for the service.  The total contract value is up to $24 million over the life of the four-year contract.

A media release quoted John Sheridan, Australian Government CTO, as saying: "We designed govCMS to save costs while empowering agencies to act independently. We're supporting innovation by relying on Drupal, a technology proven in governments around the world."

Sheridan said work on the migration of australia.gov.au and finance.gov.au to the govCMS platform had begun.

govCMS will be broadly available to Commonwealth Government entities from February 2015.

Drupal has been used to build many government and big business sites around the world, including that of the White House.

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Sam Varghese

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Sam Varghese has been writing for iTWire since 2006, a year after the site came into existence. For nearly a decade thereafter, he wrote mostly about free and open source software, based on his own use of this genre of software. Since May 2016, he has been writing across many areas of technology. He has been a journalist for nearly 40 years in India (Indian Express and Deccan Herald), the UAE (Khaleej Times) and Australia (Daily Commercial News (now defunct) and The Age). His personal blog is titled Irregular Expression.

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