Interior taps IBM for $100 million ERP job

The Interior Department has chosen IBM Corp. to take over as systems integrator on the Financial and Business Management System project that is designed to replace a hodgepodge of financial and administrative apps with a single enterprise resource planning system.

'The contract has been awarded and performance has begun on the first task order,' said Debra Sonderman, Interior's director of acquisition and property management. 'This first task order is for detailed project planning and will culminate in an integrated baseline review.'

Sonderman said the baseline review would ensure that all project tasks have been identified, that resources have been assigned to the tasks and that the project schedule is achievable.

She confirmed statements by industry sources that IBM likely would receive about $100 million for the project over six years, under a one-year contract with five option years.

'We have been continuing to move forward [with FBMS development] while we were conducting the procurement,' Sonderman said, in a reference to the fact that Interior terminated former integrator BearingPoint of McLean Va. from the project last year.

BearingPoint had been working to install enterprise resource planning software from SAP America Inc. of Newton Square, Pa. at Interior. The department continued its relationship with SAP after jettisoning BearingPoint from the project.

After firing BearingPoint and requesting proposals from integrators to take over the work, Interior received proposals from IBM and Accenture.

FBMS is intended to eventually carry out a broad array of financial and administrative functions, including:
  • budget formulation

  • budget execution

  • core financials

  • personal, real, and fleet property

  • acquisition

  • travel

  • Financial Assistance

  • Enterprise Management Information.

FBMS is intended to replace an existing array of systems that are 'expensive, complicated, and difficult to operate and maintain' as well as hard to secure, according to the project's Web site.

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