The ACT Government is experiencing a spike in ICT activity at a time when the far larger Federal Government market is experiencing a significant downturn. While the ACT receives the second lowest level of Budget funding for ICT of any Australian jurisdiction, according to Intermedium’s analysis, the ACT’s Commerce and Works Directorate (CWD) Shared Services unit, is currently responsible for a host of million dollar ICT projects.
CWD was established in 2007 to deliver shared services across the ACT Government’s nine Directorates which collectively have over 9,000 employees.
CWD’s 2012-13 Annual Report outlined the intent to establish a new data centre facility to house 50 per cent of the current ICT load. It also states, “We will also continue to enhance the Territory’s ICT data management capability, by developing cloud strategies and server virtualisation policies”.
During 2013-14 CWD has been replacing a range of ageing hardware components as part of the Whole-of-Government (W-of-G) digital network which was allocated capital expenditure (CapEx) of $6.66 million in the 2013-14 ACT Budget. It is also replacing crucial data-storage network equipment, with a CapEx allocation of $1.02 million in the 2013-14 budget.
Mobile device management services to facilitate the requirements of a more mobile workforce were a feature of 2012-13, according to that year’s Annual Report.
CWD’s Shared Services has recently approached the market for a Whole of Government learning management solution and will implement the Child Service Directorate’s (CSD) Integrated Statutory Services system to replace two of CSD’s core business systems.
Shared Services currently holds 450 training events each calendar year for a total of 1,700 registered attendees. It also manages an e-induction program for 2,500 new employees each year.
The LMS is aimed at “automating the current manual workflows associated with the management of W-of-G training services provided by Shared Services”. It will be required to store e-learning programs and electronic training records as well as provide e interrogation and reporting capability.
The system must be able to interface with the ACT Government’s HRMS system, CHRIS 21, as well as with the Oracle financial system.
Tender documents acknowledge that the number of Directorates that will adopt the LMS is not yet known but that two directorates have so far expressed interest.
Shared Services is willing to entertain hosting options - it can hosted internally or externally, facilitated by cloud services.
As the Territory’s ICT provider, Shared Services has called for Expressions of Interest (EOI) for an integrated services system to replace two of CSD’s primary systems, the Children and Young People System (CHYPS) and the Youth Justice Information System (YJIS).
The EOI states, “The systems are becoming increasingly difficult to adapt to new requirements which the systems may not have been designed to handle, making moderate adjustments expensive to develop and the systems unable to adapt to changing environments in a timely way.”
The current systems are built on dissimilar technology and do not communicate with each other. Additionally, neither system links with the CSD’s Sharepoint portals.
Envisaged solution options outlined in the EOI include optimising the existing systems, a complete system replacement or a W-of-G approach.
A Digital Innovation Hub Request for Proposal (RFP) indicates that the ACT Government is planning to implement a Canberra city free Wi-Fi network. According to the proposal, free public Wi-Fi will come online from the second-half of 2014. It states, “Once complete, the Territory’s network will be the largest free outdoor public network in Australia.”
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