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Federal Election: What's in it for ICT Vendors?

by Staff Writers •
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It seems like we've been in election mode for months now, with political advertising and campaigning. But with the election now one to two months away, what does it mean for the Federal Government ICT market?

For vendors, it can be a time of opportunity and of frustration. For those that have never worked in the Canberra market during an election, it's sure to bring uncertainty and confusion.

This is the first of a series of short articles providing practical information and tips to help you survive (and even prosper) through the election period.

A Vendor's Pre-Election Checklist Kevin Noonan, Head of Consulting

As the federal election draws closer, it is time for vendors to review their pre-election checklist. Below are a few simple items that should be on all vendor checklists.

Pre-Election spending

These days it is typical for governments to make spending announcements right up to the day they call the election. It is quite possible that an announcement could require immediate ICT deliverables. ICT companies on existing panels will benefit by paying close attention to any quickly changing requirements.

Ministerial Changes

Irrespective of the outcome of the election, there are likely to be some changes to ministerial positions. These changes are typically announced shortly after the election.

A new minister will require access to the Department’s ICT systems from a variety of locations. These include Parliament House, their Electorate Office and home.

Government agencies should already be prepared with a full kit of services and equipment ready for an incoming minister. A change of minister is an important time for any government agency with senior staff keen to make a good first impression.

Vendors can assist greatly by paying close attention over this period to system reliability and their responsiveness to service requests. Ministers frequently compare the quality of service in their new portfolio to the quality received their previous role. They also remark about this to fellow ministers. A negative first impression can be hard to change, and a new minister is likely to be around for a long time!

Public Comment

The pre-election period is clearly one of heightened political attention. This is not a good time for public comment. Issues that would otherwise draw little attention, can now cause unexpected reactions and adverse feedback. Public comment on non-essential issues is best avoided at this time.

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