New Finance Minister Andrew Constance has announced plans to further reform ICT procurement at his first NSW Government Ministerial ICT Forum at which he released the Implementation Update 2013-14 to the State’s 2012 ICT Strategy.
Following the successful delivery of many aspects of the existing Strategy, including the release of the NSW Government’s first cloud policy and the establishment of the ICT Service Catalogue, DFS will now oversee the development of a whole-of-government approach to ICT procurement.
The Minister placed significant emphasis on the role of the ICT Board, comprised of the Directors-General of seven of the nine major Departments, in the ongoing implementation of the ICT Strategy
“The ICT Board will lead the reform of the procurement of ICT goods and services to align with the NSW Government Procurement Reform,” says the Update.
The inclusion of more accessible cloud options will be a key component of this, with an expansion of the ICT Service Catalogue on the agenda for 2014 to enable “agencies to easily access scalable and reliable ICT as a service”. The Government plans to complete its evaluation of a number of ongoing public sector cloud pilot projects by the end of 2013, and release a guide on ICT sourcing towards the middle of 2014.
The implementation of a “category management approach to ICT procurement” is due by the end of 2013, with the ICT Board responsible for this first stage.
“We will also be reforming investment processes to ensure the NSW Government’s annual $2 billion investment in ICT maximises its value and is consistent with the interests of the community,” said Constance.
The ICT Board will lead the review of existing ICT investment and establish “clearly defined whole of government ICT investment principles”.
The procurement transformation will also entail earlier engagement with industry during the procurement process. Better engagement practices are expected to become visible by mid-2014.
Along with the development of new approaches to ICT procurement and investment, the ICT Board will also be responsible for monitoring agency compliance with the updated principles. Agencies will also report to the ICT Board at the end of 2013 on their progress in adopting Open Government practices.
In other features of the Update, upcoming policy releases include:
- By the end of 2013 - a digital strategy focussing on information access and citizen engagement;
- In early 2014 - benchmarking results from the ICT Survey on benchmarking;
- In mid-2014 - the release of an ICT sourcing guide to complement the cloud policy;
- By mid-2014 - guidance on information sharing for Government employees;
- In mid-2015 - a review of the Digital Information Security Policy and its implementation; and
- Guidance on “mobility as a service” to support bring your own device capability.
Constance took on his role at DFS in August 2013, soon after the appointment of a new Director-General and Whole-of-Government CIO Laurie Glanfield in July. The shake up of DFS’s top positions began with the move of former Director-General Michael Coutts-Trotter to the Department of Family and Community Services, and the removal of former Finance and Services Minister Greg Pearce soon after.
Constance and Glanfield took the opportunity at today’s Forum to outline their vision for whole-of-government ICT and the role of the DFS.
“As the Minister for Finance and Services, I have come on board at a time when, as a relatively new portfolio area within State Government, we have the opportunity to very much recast the thinking and innovations across Government to deliver better quality services,” said Constance.
“For me, it’s an exciting time to come into the role of whole-of-government CIO. We’ve got a very solid foundation to build on. There’s been enormous reform over the last two years, reflected in the Government ICT Strategy and the Update,” said Glanfield.
“I’m certainly keen to see my Department playing an increasingly active role in assisting Government agencies to review their services models.”
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