Dept of Education chooses TRIM, Hummingbird

Dept of Education chooses TRIM, Hummingbird

The Federal Department of Education, Science and Training has signed a deal with systems integrator Alphawest to implement the TRIM records management application from Tower Software plus Hummingbird’s EIP and Collaboration software.

The software will be deployed across 1,700 seats, with a main stated goal to include “electronic objects” in records management efforts as well as paper-based documents. The system will adhere to standards recommended by the National Archives of Australia for so-called “e-permanence” such as ISO 15489.

”The new system will allow us to respond to the whole of Government requirements for better records keeping, provision of Government services online and the ability this now gives us to respond to the evidence of requirements of Parliament and the Courts,” said Tony Kwan, chief information officer at DEST.

Alphawest will provide its own “streamlined interface” to the TRIM application, as well as integrating the Hummingbird products to deliver a portal interface, and a “collaborative workspace” system to all 1,700 users, according to the company.

”We are confident the new system supplied and implemented by Alphawest will allow DEST staff faster access to vital knowledge,” said Mr Kwan.

Alphawest was recently spun off from Solution 6, and its specialists are mostly taken from CVSI and MDY Data Solutions, two consultancy firms which Solution 6 had previously acquired.

Alphawest routinely competes for government business with other systems integrators which specialise in the TRIM product. For instance, three of the five providers approved in the last Federal Government panel were TRIM integrators.

Mark Towers, national manager for information management at Alphawest, said Tower Software’s strategy was concentrating on research and development and leaving implementations to partners.

”In a typical situation, we may compete with other TRIM providers,” he said. “We have the experience in implementing TRIM.”

The TRIM integrators are constantly fighting for business with software developers which have their own in-house implementation specialists - such as FileNET, Tower Technology and Objective - meaning that customers are constantly having to choose between the two types of providers.

A typical criticism from the developers’ in-house teams of the third-party approach is that the integrators are beholden to the developers, especially when products are upgraded. Mr Towers said Alphawest’s ultimate strength was its people.

”Alphawest is in a unique position of having access to a number of partners. Our ability to offer alternatives gives us a distinct advantage,” he said. Mr Towers said he was “very keen to extend the partnership beyond the scope of this contract”. Financial details of the deal were not disclosed.

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