New Zealand IT services company Datacom is about to lose the Australasian datacentre-hosting business of Manpower, the labour and recruitment services company.
Manpower is consolidating its Asia-Pacific infrastructure and moving to a datacentre in Singapore.
Manpower’s Sydney-based manager of applications and reporting, Andrew Wilkie, says the five servers Datacom currently hosts in Auckland will shift to an IBM datacentre in Singapore in February. This move follows a similar shift of servers already relocated from Datacom in Australia.
The five IBM Windows servers host Manpower’s core systems, including email and the company’s business application, PowerBase. They also host a Citrix environment, to deliver applications from the server.
Datacom New Zealand chairman Frank Stephenson says such losses are a pity when they happen but will have little impact on Datacom, which he says hosts hundreds of servers. He says Manpower is a customer of Datacom’s Australian business and, while some servers have been lost, a lot of what is being shifted to Singapore is inhouse at Manpower.
Other services, such as Manpower’s disaster recovery service, have been picked up as a result of the changes, he says. Overall, the consolidation is seen as a positive development.
Wilkie says New Zealand staff are unlikely to notice the change and there will be no local redundancies as the servers are already hosted externally. Local IT support will be delivered out of Sydney.
Stephenson says he doesn’t see a trend towards centralising systems offshore, even with an ever-growing number of New Zealand companies falling into foreign hands. “They’ve nibbled away at doing some programming overseas, and there are signs of some systems administration and database management moving offshore, but we haven’t see people moving their boxes offshore,” he says.
Stephenson says Datacom can compete on most fronts with offshore competitors, especially in areas where a lot of customer service is required.
Despite this, he says, he repeats the words “commoditisation, automation and globalisation” to himself regularly.
Datacom is a privately-owned New Zealand company controlled by Evander Management which, in turn, is controlled by group chairman John Holdsworth. New Zealand Post owns slightly less than a third of the company, which posted a 17% lift in revenue, to $357 million, for the year to March 2006.
Net profit was up 28%, to $22.1 million, and staffing increased by 10%, to 2002 staff. This includes the company’s offshore operations in Malaysia and Australia.