The Australian government announced a review of all significant government technology projects, with a deadline of mid-2017. The review will include all non-corporate Commonwealth entities and all active projects over $10 million in value or those that engage a large number of Australians.
A new investment management office within the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) will provide a comprehensive picture of the government’s ICT and digital technology investments. The new office will develop more strategic approaches to investment analysis, governance, risk management and program and benefits management. It will also focus on ongoing strategic partnerships across government to provide independent assurance and improved delivery outcomes for both agencies (earlier this month the DTA delivered its first progress report on its Performance Dashboard where government agencies must publicly report how their government services are performing once they’ve reached public beta phase) and people that use government services online.
It will enable greater transparency and oversight of the Government’s AU$ 6.2 billion annual ICT spend. The government will be able to see the costs, benefits, risks and status of these initiatives.
The redefined expanded functions for the DTA (Digital Transformation Office or DTO till October last year) include targeting technology assistance to government departments and agencies, and remediate projects.
Assistant Minister for Digital Transformation Angus Taylor said,”The DTA will ensure we’re investing in the right technology projects, we can track their implementation, and know they will deliver on the public policy benefits they promise. This is more than a review, it’s ongoing oversight, and it will provide unprecedented visibility and centralised management of IT projects.”
While there are enormous benefits to be gained from modernisation of public services through incorporation of ICT, the implementation of complex projects can be hampered or even derailed due to multiple reasons and in many ways. State governments in Queensland and Victoria have ICT dashboards to track and monitor the progress of major government ICT projects currently underway over time.
In December last year, Assistant Minister Taylor had announced the establishment of an ICT Procurement Taskforce for the Australian government to develop an open and simple procurement gateway to expedite the adoption and integration of new technologies into government service delivery. This new initiative ties with the work of the Procurement Taskforce, with the ultimate objective being delivery of better government services at a lower cost and ensuring that public funds are well spent.
Read the press release here.