Australian Information Industry Association
Government Digitisation Policy Position Statement
Update - 24 September 2018: AIIA has now released our Government Digitisation Policy Position Statement
AIIA Statement of the Issue
Digital technologies permeate every aspect of Australian society. There are more mobile connections than there are Australians; nine in ten adults connect to the internet and consume more than 3.6 million terabytes of data yearly. Government now processes more than 800 million transactions per year for its citizens.
Australia has consistently ranked high in e-Government indicators for the past decade, especially in the provision of online services and citizen participation. The UN eGovernment Development Index (2018) ranks Australia second. However, on e-Participating we rank 7th.
- In 2016, the World Economic Forum’s Networked Readiness Index, a measure of our capacity to exploit Information and Communications Technology (ICT) ranked Australia 18th.
Australia’s ability to exploit the market opportunities of new and emerging technologies is directly related to our level of digital literacy and technical skills. In the 2018 IMD’s Digital Competitiveness ranking across 63 countries, Australia ranks in 13th position having gone up from 15th.
According to McKinsey “the flow of data and information now generates more economic value than the global goods trade”. In Australia, the economy-wide value of government data is estimated to be between $500 million and $25 billion per year. Australia ranks number two on the global open data index with 25,000 open data sets, yet our data reforms are slow to emerge. The benefits of open data include new data-driven products and services, increased operational efficiency in both the public and private sectors, and improved engagement from the public.
If Australia is to become one of the top 3 digital governments in the world by 2025 and realise a potential contribution of around $250 billion to our GDP, then we need a comprehensive strategy with a clear road map and leadership from Government and industry.
The key challenges for government digitisation are:
- Considerable disparity in business systems remain at the inter-agency level, between governments and in government interactions with individuals and businesses;
- Consistent demonstrable service improvements for people are lacking due to the absence of public analytics to measure service performance of a businesses’ or individual’s digital public service experience;
- Determining the digital and technical knowledge and skills that government and industry need to invest in to take advantage of the significant economic and social benefits, that big data, analytics, IoT and emerging technologies are expected to deliver;
- How to track government investment in data reform, science and innovation, digital economy and digital literacy and skills programs and translate outcomes and actions into meaningful products, services, and measureable economic and social gains for individuals and businesses; and
- How to achieve a fundamental shift in public sector system design with an accelerated modernisation agenda which includes a clear framework for collaboration with industry and research institutes.
AIIA Recommendations and Actions
AIIA recommends that the Government, industry and research institutes collaborate to develop:
- A clear and consistent and coordinated enterprise wide and transparent digital agenda and road map across three tiers of government – so that industry and individuals do not need to navigate the disparity in systems and supply information multiple times;
- More opportunities for partnering between industry and government outside the procurement process to accelerate government digitisation;
- Transparency in the roll out of digital services such as the govPass /myGovID system to enable local industry partnering and innovation;
- Fast track data reform activities including more transparency into how open government data is captured and then used to generate economic benefits for Australian business and social benefits for individuals;
- Promote agile delivery of government digital services and make agile delivery a criterion for prioritising new policy proposals;
- Ongoing ICT Procurement reform which are mandated and have clear and transparent reporting on efficacy of new frameworks and policies especially those relating to participation from the SME sector and regional businesses.
- Approaches to market should be outcomes based rather than seeking an end to end solution; and
- Bipartisan support on Australian Government’s digital transformation which includes delivery of a digital transformation strategy, transformation roadmaps, measurement of impact of the transformation agenda over time and public reporting on KPIs.
- Work with the Government, industry and research institutes to accelerate government digitisation;
- Advocate for greater and new forms of industry engagement outside the procurement/grants framework to expedite sharing of knowledge and foster innovation to achieve government digitisation;
- Ensure design thinking;
- Promote agile delivery of government services;
- Continue to work with government agencies to push for improvements and efficiencies in ICT procurement;
- Work with Government to ensure that data collected through government transactions are secure, private, accurate and afford consumer protection in accordance with legislation.