blog We couldn’t help but laugh when we read this excellent interview with Australian Bureau of Statistics chief information officer Patrick Hadley, describing the agency’s ongoing commitment to IBM’s Lotus Notes/Domino platform as part of its recently released and wide-ranging ICT strategy (PDF here). iTNews quotes Hadley (we recommend you click here for the full article):
“We have Notes programming skills in our team. They are very smart and very technologically literate,” he said. “We are a happy Notes camper.”
Now, if you examine the ABS’ ICT strategy (which we plan to go into in a great deal more detail at a future date), you’ll find the organisation is not just using Notes as a stand-alone collaboration environment; it’s actually using the complete suite, ranging from Lotus Notes 8.5.3 Mail and Calendar, SameTime for instant messaging, Connections for “social/business networking”, Work Group Databases for collaboration and knowledge management, Lotus Live and Quickr (“external collaboration”) and Lotus iNotes and Traveler Mail and Calendar via web. In short, Notes is highly entrenched at the ABS and it would be a complete platform overhaul to get it out and replace it with Microsoft Outlook/Exchange in one of its several iterations.
However, we can’t help but suspect that while Hadley might be a “happy Notes camper”, not everyone at the ABS will be. It’s hard to imagine that junior staff entering the workforce after using Gmail, Yahoo Mail or any of Microsoft’s Windows Live options in their private lives will be happy being force-fed Notes at work, and we imagine the same will be true for senior executives at the ABS, who would no doubt prefer the agency shift to the standardised Outlook/Exchange ecosystem which most people are familiar with. In fact, that’s precisely what’s happening at Hadley’s old outfit, the Department of Human Services (he joined the ABS in February this year). Will the ABS still be using Notes in five years or more? Only time will tell. In any case, I am sure Microsoft and Google have already marked the agency down on their ‘high-priority’ sales target lists.