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SITA braves open source

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The State IT Agency (SITA) is transferring its entire technology infrastructure to free, open source and open standards software (FOSS). SITA CEO Llewellyn Jones says the organisation hopes to complete this process within the next four to five months.

“We are doing a lot around FOSS within our organisation. In terms of our back-end environment, we are already using open source to a large extent. Now we are focusing on our user environment; open source offerings are just as good as – and sometimes even better than – their proprietary competitors,” he explains.

The organisation's chief information officer, Eghshaan Khan, says this is a positive move for SITA, but admits he has some concerns.

“This movement proves again that open source or FOSS is not a myth. We embrace the principles of FOSS: interoperability, building communities and sharing. The one concern I have though is change management. We are confident the software portfolio we have chosen is just as good, if not better, than what our people have been working on; but, they need to discover this for themselves in order to buy into the project,” he explains.

SITA has engaged the services of a change management specialist “to take the employees on this trip with us”, says Khan.

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