After much speculation and a heated industrial relations dispute, Bank of Ireland is understood to have formally signed a seven-year, €600m outsourcing contract with HP.
Before the signing of the contract, the bank went through an extensive due diligence phase with regulatory approvals sought and granted by the Irish Financial Services Regulatory Authority and the financial services authorities in the UK.
The deal is reputed to be the largest ever outsourcing contract in Ireland or the UK and it will see HP manage the bank’s entire IT infrastructure, including desktop systems, servers, mainframes, local area networks, service desk and printing operations.
News of the contract prompted industrial action from the 500 workers at the Bank of Ireland’s IT subsidiary in Cabinteely, ITSIS, who were concerned about their livelihoods as employees of HP. Although the terms of the deal with HP lasts for seven years, it is understood that the bank’s IT workers were only offered contracts guaranteeing a maximum service of two years.
The dispute was resolved when the staff received a guarantee of job security for five years and a payment of €5,000 each.
By John Kennedy