CGI (NYSE: GIB) (TSX: GIB.A) has been selected by the Scottish Government to deliver end-to-end services, software and technical infrastructure to provide electronic ballot counting in support of the 2017 Scottish Local Government elections. CGI was responsible for the highly successful delivery of the electronic vote counting system for the 2012 Scottish elections. The new contract, which now also includes the postal balloting process, is valued at £6.5 million and extends to all 32 Scottish Local Authorities.
The 2017 local government elections in Scotland will result in the simultaneous election of around 1,200 councillors in 353 wards across Scotland’s 32 Local Authorities. As Scottish Local Authorities use the Single Transferable Vote (STV) system, it is possible for the electorate to vote for every candidate in order of preference. Due to this complexity, the manual counting of ballot papers can take anywhere between three and four days. Through the use of an e-counting solution developed by CGI’s Glasgow-based partner Idox, scanning ballot papers takes hours and calculations take just minutes and will improve accuracy and auditability of results.
Minister for Local Government and Community Empowerment Marco Biagi said: "I congratulate CGI for their success in winning the contract to deliver electronic counting for the next local government elections in May 2017. In carrying out the procurement exercise, the Scottish Government worked closely with our partners in local government to ensure a robust and transparent competition. Following on from the success of electronic counting in the 2012 local government elections, the Scottish Government will work with CGI to build on the past experience to deliver an effective and transparent e-counting system which will meet all expectations."
Mary Pitcaithly, Convener of the Electoral Management Board for Scotland, said: "The award of this contract marks a significant step forward in the preparations for the local government elections in 2017. Over the past year, senior members of the electoral community have worked closely with the civil servants to develop an e-counting system specification, which builds on the successful experience of 2012 and will ensure the delivery of an accurate and transparent count".
"The next 12 months will be of vital importance as we engage in a robust testing regime of the e-counting system in advance of the elections in 2017," added Maggie Morrison, Director, Public Sector, for CGI’s operations in Scotland. "This will provide confidence for the voters, parties, candidates and all those with an interest in the election".
"We are honoured to once again work with the Scottish Government and support the democratic process. This is also a great example of CGI working closely with our local Scottish SME partners, including hardware provider Dacoll, based in Bathgate, and our training partner Rathmhor, based in Linlithgow. Together, our very best teams will work closely with Local Authority partners to undertake a huge amount of planning, testing and training ahead of the crunch election period.”
The combined teams will undergo a year of thorough testing, culminating in a large-scale, publicly observed bulk test ahead of moving to train the local teams at each Local Authority. Those teams actually oversee and have responsibility for the elections. CGI’s team will ramp up to 300 during the crunch election month, with technical assistance provided onsite during Election Day.
Founded in 1976, CGI Group Inc. is the fifth largest independent information technology and business process services firm in the world. Approximately 65,000 professionals serve thousands of global clients from offices and delivery centers across the Americas, Europe and Asia Pacific, leveraging a comprehensive portfolio of services, including high-end business and IT consulting, systems integration, application development and maintenance and infrastructure management, as well as 150 IP-based services and solutions. With annual revenue in excess of C$10 billion and an order backlog exceeding C$20 billion, CGI shares are listed on the TSX (GIB.A) and the NYSE (GIB). Website: www.cgi.com.
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