Highlands opens largest IT service centres in Europe

Yokel

LE
...will look after all Defence IT customers who require IT assistance....

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How good os the connectivity around the Highlands?
 

Dread

LE
A couple of observations:

It will be the largest centre in Europe based on the number of end-users.

Creating jobs for over 250 people

Having 250 people (spread over a 24/7 shift profile in 2 locations) for over 200,000 users = ultra shite service levels. Be prepared for long wait times to speak to a human (the wait to talk to a simian Scot will be almost as long).

The cost of the project with Capgemini is GBP 225 million. A chunk of this will simply be the office rental and running costs at the two sites (unless they've opted for utterly shite and depressing work spaces). Capgemini will also be wanting a profit margin of around 40-55% on the deal: not much left for the workers:

Total project: GBP 225M
Total running costs (not including salaries) for 5 years: GBP 60 M (assumes rent of GBP 16 per sq ft +VAT, software licensing, hardware, chocolate hobnobs for management meetings, etc.)
Total Capgemini profits: GBP 110M
Total salaries (gross): GBP 65M over 5 years.
Assume senior management team on GBP 1M per annum + costs = GBP 6M. All other employees on same rate (unrealistic I know, but makes the maths easy).
Total average annual salary of worker: (GBP 49M/245)/5. Deduct payroll costs and employers contributions and pensions: roughly GBP 30k per annum before personal taxes and deductions.

In summary: be prepared to wait a very long time to speak to a barely literate and utterly unintelligible haggis-stabber who isn't exactly motivated by good wages.

Are there even 250 people with NVQ Level 1 in 'turning on a computer' in Scotland, let alone the technical skill to actually provide a service and not simply read through a check-list?
 
A couple of observations:





Having 250 people (spread over a 24/7 shift profile in 2 locations) for over 200,000 users = ultra shite service levels. Be prepared for long wait times to speak to a human (the wait to talk to a simian Scot will be almost as long).

The cost of the project with Capgemini is GBP 225 million. A chunk of this will simply be the office rental and running costs at the two sites (unless they've opted for utterly shite and depressing work spaces). Capgemini will also be wanting a profit margin of around 40-55% on the deal: not much left for the workers:

Total project: GBP 225M
Total running costs (not including salaries) for 5 years: GBP 60 M (assumes rent of GBP 16 per sq ft +VAT, software licensing, hardware, chocolate hobnobs for management meetings, etc.)
Total Capgemini profits: GBP 110M
Total salaries (gross): GBP 65M over 5 years.
Assume senior management team on GBP 1M per annum + costs = GBP 6M. All other employees on same rate (unrealistic I know, but makes the maths easy).
Total average annual salary of worker: (GBP 49M/245)/5. Deduct payroll costs and employers contributions and pensions: roughly GBP 30k per annum before personal taxes and deductions.

In summary: be prepared to wait a very long time to speak to a barely literate and utterly unintelligible haggis-stabber who isn't exactly motivated by good wages.

Are there even 250 people with NVQ Level 1 in 'turning on a computer' in Scotland, let alone the technical skill to actually provide a service and not simply read through a check-list?
Poetic thanks .
 
A couple of observations:





Having 250 people (spread over a 24/7 shift profile in 2 locations) for over 200,000 users = ultra shite service levels. Be prepared for long wait times to speak to a human (the wait to talk to a simian Scot will be almost as long).

The cost of the project with Capgemini is GBP 225 million. A chunk of this will simply be the office rental and running costs at the two sites (unless they've opted for utterly shite and depressing work spaces). Capgemini will also be wanting a profit margin of around 40-55% on the deal: not much left for the workers:

Total project: GBP 225M
Total running costs (not including salaries) for 5 years: GBP 60 M (assumes rent of GBP 16 per sq ft +VAT, software licensing, hardware, chocolate hobnobs for management meetings, etc.)
Total Capgemini profits: GBP 110M
Total salaries (gross): GBP 65M over 5 years.
Assume senior management team on GBP 1M per annum + costs = GBP 6M. All other employees on same rate (unrealistic I know, but makes the maths easy).
Total average annual salary of worker: (GBP 49M/245)/5. Deduct payroll costs and employers contributions and pensions: roughly GBP 30k per annum before personal taxes and deductions.

In summary: be prepared to wait a very long time to speak to a barely literate and utterly unintelligible haggis-stabber who isn't exactly motivated by good wages.

Are there even 250 people with NVQ Level 1 in 'turning on a computer' in Scotland, let alone the technical skill to actually provide a service and not simply read through a check-list?
Some observations on yours:

We used to provide support for over 1,000 users with a team of 4 people quite successfully. This was in an office environment when users would be using IT for every aspect of their job.

Scale that up to 200,000 and ignore any efficiency saving, that's 800 people.

Add three shifts at the same staffing level, that would be 2,400 people. So the numbers should be enough.

Average salary-wise: £30,000 in the locations probably equates to paying £40,000 around here.

£40K for a call centre IT job? If that's not getting you some decent people, you're recruiting (and training) wrong.
 

Dread

LE
Some observations on yours:

We used to provide support for over 1,000 users with a team of 4 people quite successfully. This was in an office environment when users would be using IT for every aspect of their job.

Scale that up to 200,000 and ignore any efficiency saving, that's 800 people.

Add three shifts at the same staffing level, that would be 2,400 people. So the numbers should be enough.

Average salary-wise: £30,000 in the locations probably equates to paying £40,000 around here.

£40K for a call centre IT job? If that's not getting you some decent people, you're recruiting (and training) wrong.

Errr....

They've stated that they are recruiting a total of 250 people (including all management and support). I wouldn't expect 3 shifts: more like 1 of 200 people during normal hours and one of 30 (the rest being management).

Or am I a total mong and have read the report wrong?

Here in Hungary (one of Europe's largest centres for Shared Service Centres, and I helped set up the Vodafone one when I was a director at KPMG), a competent IT professional's salary starts at around EUR 24,000 net (750,000HUF per month). This in a country where income tax is 16%, company tax is 9% (though social security contributions put up the real tax rate to around 30% for middle-high incomes). A programmer can demand EU 50k to literally until the sky is the limit, depending on their skills and track record (Hungary is the largest IT centre in central Europe).
 

giatttt

War Hero
Errr....

They've stated that they are recruiting a total of 250 people (including all management and support). I wouldn't expect 3 shifts: more like 1 of 200 people during normal hours and one of 30 (the rest being management).

Or am I a total mong and have read the report wrong?

Here in Hungary (one of Europe's largest centres for Shared Service Centres, and I helped set up the Vodafone one when I was a director at KPMG), a competent IT professional's salary starts at around EUR 24,000 net (750,000HUF per month). This in a country where income tax is 16%, company tax is 9% (though social security contributions put up the real tax rate to around 30% for middle-high incomes). A programmer can demand EU 50k to literally until the sky is the limit, depending on their skills and track record (Hungary is the largest IT centre in central Europe).
IIRC it's 24x7

BTW BT have had a big call centre in Alness for at least a decade, low staff churn, £20K pa goes quite a bit further up there than it would have done for the team in Bracknell that they replace.
 
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Dread

LE
IIRC it's 24x7

BTW BT have had a big call centre in Alness for at least a decade, low staff churn, £20K pa goes quite a bit further up there than it would have done for the team in Bracknell that they replace.

Understood it's 24/7, however the vast majority of the military only work office hours in the UK and Europe (with a few thousand scattered elsewhere at the moment), so no point having equal shifts.
 
Errr....

They've stated that they are recruiting a total of 250 people (including all management and support). I wouldn't expect 3 shifts: more like 1 of 200 people during normal hours and one of 30 (the rest being management).

You mentioned 24/7 in your response - that implies 3 shifts.

Or am I a total mong and have read the report wrong?

Here in Hungary (one of Europe's largest centres for Shared Service Centres, and I helped set up the Vodafone one when I was a director at KPMG), a competent IT professional's salary starts at around EUR 24,000 net (750,000HUF per month). This in a country where income tax is 16%, company tax is 9% (though social security contributions put up the real tax rate to around 30% for middle-high incomes). A programmer can demand EU 50k to literally until the sky is the limit, depending on their skills and track record (Hungary is the largest IT centre in central Europe).

I don't see how any of this is in dispute with what I posted.
 
All sounds very good, but it has MOD involvement so I remain highly cynical. The first line stuff is easy to deal with, what's truly key is how problems are escalated beyond first line and how they're dealt with.
 

Gabion Groyne

War Hero
The Inverness accent is one of the clearest you'll ever hear, so no worries there. Nowadays you're more than likely to get an English accent, especially with Lossie fairly close by so this could potentially provide job opportunities for service families.
 

Dread

LE
You mentioned 24/7 in your response - that implies 3 shifts.

I don't see how any of this is in dispute with what I posted.
We used to provide support for over 1,000 users with a team of 4 people quite successfully. This was in an office environment when users would be using IT for every aspect of their job.

Scale that up to 200,000 and ignore any efficiency saving, that's 800 people.

Add three shifts at the same staffing level, that would be 2,400 people. So the numbers should be enough..

The 24/7 is from the MoD article. This obviously has an impact on personnel requirements.

Your own maths state 800 people per shift: the MoD/Capgemini are recruiting a total of 250 people. Rather a significant shortfall from your 800. With 3 shifts, there's no need to have the same number of people on call in the middle of the night as during the day as the vast majority of the Army at any one time is working normal office hours.

My issue is that 250 people is far too small a number to provide decent support. Further, of those 250, some will be senior management (thus not answering tech calls), some will be HR, reception, and their own IT support. 2 locations = more support staff than 1 location.

With regards the salaries, I'll accept your numbers happily (albeit with surprise that people are so cheap): here in Hungary the salaries would have to be equal to my back of a fag packet calculations, and yet the cost of living is much less: beer is still less than a quid a pint (outside the tourist areas), eating out is a fraction of the UK price, and rented accommodation is cheap e.g. 700sq ft 2 bedroom apartment is around 140 quid a month rent in an 'ok' area.
 
The Inverness accent is one of the clearest you'll ever hear, so no worries there. Nowadays you're more than likely to get an English accent, especially with Lossie fairly close by so this could potentially provide job opportunities for service families.
Oh, stop it. Who’s going to let facts get in the way of a little casual bigotry.
 
The biggest disgrace is the fact that there aren't any servicemen on the teams. So someone stuck in Diego Garcia, Ascension or Singapore continues to have to talk to someone that has nil understanding of why they need to be able to log on at 0200 UK time.
 

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