Noosa Council heads into the cloud

The new Noosa Council, which de-amalgamated from the Sunshine Coast Regional Council (SCRC) on 1 January 2014, has become the first customer to take the full TechnologyOne OneCouncil solution running on the TechnologyOne Cloud.

Despite starting with zero IT infrastructure or staff, the new Council and TechnologyOne implemented the solution in four months, to become fully operational in January 2014. 

Similar council implementations using outdated technology models typically take 12-18 months. 

TechnologyOne was chosen over six other providers because the combination of the preconfigured OneCouncil software solution and cloud offering provided Noosa council with the necessary hardware, software and proven business processes to make this significant challenge a reality. 

The enterprise software as a service deal is worth approximately $1.2 million in initial licensing and services, and $1 million per annum thereafter, saving the new council millions of dollars in capital expenditure, depreciation and in-house IT staffing costs. As part of the deal, TechnologyOne’s Application Managed Services team will provide ongoing solution management and administration.

Initial estimates guided by a KPMG cost analysis conducted on behalf of the Queensland Treasury Corporation, put the capital expenditure on this sort of IT set-up to be approximately $5 million with an annual operating cost of $3.6 million. 

TechnologyOne executive chairman Adrian Di Marco said more and more customers were choosing to go into the cloud.

“By delivering our enterprise software as a service, TechnologyOne is providing the future of enterprise software, today. Our customers should not have to worry about the complexity of running or updating their software and infrastructure when we can take care of all of that for them,” Mr Di Marco said. 

“By removing the burden of managing their computing environment, we enable them to focus on running their business.”

Newly-appointed Noosa Council CEO, Brett de Chastel said it was important for the council to be able to stand on its own feet from the start.

“The TechnologyOne team worked tirelessly alongside us to provide such great systems in an extremely short time frame. By having our own systems on day one, we have already saved money that would have otherwise been spent on temporary solutions,” Mr de Chastel said. 

“Since launch, TechnologyOne suite has continued to perform fantastically.” 

While more than 400 employees will transfer from the Sunshine Coast Regional Council, there will only be five full time IT staff. Prior to amalgamation, the former Noosa Shire Council, which had a full time IT team of nine people, had been a Civica site. 

TechnologyOne developed OneCouncil in collaboration with 250 councils as a single platform solution with proven practice and embedded business processes, integrating all operations from land and property management, finance and regulatory functions through to payroll and human resource management. As a preconfigured solution, OneCouncil streamlines implementation and reduces time, cost and risk.

“It is difficult enough to run a council without worrying about ageing servers, downtime and disaster recovery. None of this is our core business, so it makes perfect sense to outsource all of that to an expert while the council gets on with serving the Noosa community,” Mr de Chastel said.

“This total solution and embedded business processes mean we have removed a huge amount of complexity from the transfer process, prepared ourselves for the future and saved millions of dollars.”

Other deciding factors included a watertight Service Level Agreement, which guarantees 99 per cent access every month; a ‘highly available’ environment, meaning that every transaction is updating two mirrored databases simultaneously in two separate data centres; and response times that are already proving faster than the SCRC in-house system.