NSW leads the charge to digital government


This release of Intermedium’s Digital Government Readiness Indicator (DGRI) finds New South Wales leaping ahead of other jurisdictions in the nationwide movement towards digital government services.

Whilst NSW holds a convincing lead, the Federal Government, South Australia and Queensland are vying closely for second place. Thanks to a proactive start to the year, Queensland has pipped Federal at the post and secured its position behind NSW as runner up. South Australia’s early commitment to digital transformation is still clearly paying off, with the state nabbing the remaining spot in the top four.

Victoria continues to lag behind other jurisdictions comparable in size and resources. Western Australia is still also performing poorly against key indicators, however with the upcoming release of its Whole-of-Government (WofG) ICT strategy, it is likely to perform better in future iterations of the DGRI.

Intermedium’s Digital Government Readiness Indicator rates the preparedness of each government in delivering citizen-centric digital services.  Intermedium’s analysts have assigned weighted scores to eleven key criteria across six categories: ICT strategy, ICT policy, ICT governance, service delivery key agencies, procurement policy, and cross-jurisdictional cooperation.

The scores are presented graphically, to allow for a clear comparison to be drawn between jurisdictions:

The top scorers:

NSW’s Baird Government has invested significant resources into their digital agenda and the state has scored highly across all categories. However, they have scored particularly highly in ICT strategy: NSW’s comprehensive ICT Strategy 2012-2015 is diligently updated every year, with Digital+ 2016 being the most recent iteration. Additionally, a WofG innovation strategy is scheduled to replace the ICT Strategy in May this year.

Queensland trails well behind NSW in second position on the Digital Government Readiness Indicator in spite of high scores across the ICT strategy, service delivery and procurement categories.

Qld’s ICT Strategy 2013-17 Action Plan was updated by the Newman Government (ICT Renewal Action Plan) in November 2014, and again under the newly-elected Palaszczuk Government (ICT Modernisation Plan) in August 2015 — just six months after the previous refresh.

The Federal Government’s high score is due to their strong governance structure and commitment to ICT leadership. In particular, the Federal Government’s Digital Transformation Office, announced in January 2015, is responsible for a digital transformation agenda allocated $255 million in the last budget.

South Australia is proving itself to be a leader in ICT Governance. It was the first state to abolish its CIO position in favour of a WofG position – Director, Digital Government – that shifted the emphasis of ICT leadership to citizen-facing digital service delivery.

The Weatherill Government has also proactively pursued a “digital by default” agenda and state service delivery agency Service SA is among the earliest examples of a centralised service platform in Australian governance.

The Victorian Government’s continued underperformance has been prolonged by poor ICT project governance, with the recently released second phase of the ‘Digital Dashboard’ audit series identifying a further five Victorian ICT projects suffering from serious delays and cost blowouts. However, the scheduled launch of Service Victoria, likely to closely resemble Service NSW, is expected to improve the state’s digital readiness performance.

Western Australia sits in last place behind the Australian Capital Territory, Tasmania and the Northern Territory, however, its position is likely to improve following the next quarterly update of the DGRI. The state now has a Whole of Government Chief Information Officer – Giles Nunis, and will be releasing its inaugural ICT strategy in the coming months. The strategy is likely to help build on the pockets of digital excellence already in the state, in agencies such as Landgate and the Department of Transport.

In the coming weeks Intermedium will be publishing a comprehensive report on the DGRI with a full breakdown of how your jurisdiction scored in each category and why.

The report will only be available to Intermedium subscribers.  

If you would like to view more of our paid content and find out more about subscription services from Intermedium, please email us or phone (02) 9955 9896. 

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