The Australian Electoral Commission has awarded two technology firms $30 million to modernise its electoral management services for the 2025 federal election, with the upcoming May election to rely on the 30-year old system.
Epicon IT Solutions will be paid more than $20 million by the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) to manage the program, while Irish-domiciled technology company Accenture will get nearly $10 million for the foundational capabilities.
Both contract notices were published last week and run for three years, with an AEC spokesperson confirming the work relates to the modernisation program.
“A modernised electoral management system will improve the AEC’s capability to adapt to the ever-changing environment and effectively manage security risks,” an AEC spokesperson told InnovationAus.com.
“Additionally, the program will help increase operational efficiency in the management of the AEC’s supply chain and logistics as well as the 100,000 temporary election workforce required to deliver an election.”
The spokesperson said Accenture will develop the “foundational capabilities” including system and enterprise integration for the upgrade, while Epicon will provide “service management, business process management and supply chain management”.
The work started on 11 April but will not impact the upcoming election, the spokesperson said, with the “first wave” of improvements to be delivered before the 2025 election.
The AEC entered into a standing offer with Accenture and another with Epicon earlier this month to deliver and manage the modernisation program.
The upgrade has been in the works for several years, with nearly $97 million allocated to it in the 2020 budget. It followed a report in 2017 on the previous year’s election which found the ageing IT system underpinning the process is posing “unacceptable risks” to election integrity.
The same core tech environment has been in place since the early 1990s, and the AEC has described the modernisation as a “once in a generation” technology overhaul.
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