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Other jurisdictions eye DEEWR's Parliamentary Workflow Solution

by Pallavi Singhal •
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The Parliamentary Workflow Solution (PWS) being rolled out by the Federal Department of Education, Employment and Workplace Relations (DEEWR) could be a contender for deployment across other government jurisdictions.

South Australian Government CIO Andrew Mills asked DEEWR's Group Manager Technology Solutions, Susan Monkley about the possibility at the Technology in Government Summit in Canberra.

"Making solutions open so other jurisdictions can then leverage off them, have you considered that?" he said.

"I'm happy to share this one around the world," said Monkley. "But there are a few differences between us and other jurisdictions that we would need to look at.

"Certainly it's not something we're holding close to our chests and one of the ideas about this is, as we mature and grow its capability, making it available to others as it's appropriate to do so.

"So if you're interested, I'm happy to have a conversation."

The strong underlying design and architecture of the solution is one of the reasons it was selected as the whole-of-government solution at a federal level, with DEEWR to implement and host the solution across 41 Government agencies.

The project launched in 2011 and the first stage, which established the necessary infrastructure for the deployment of the solution, was completed in June 2013. The first set of modules and features has also been released.

It is now entering its second stage with the deployment of the solution to the first four agencies in a staged implementation. Each of the agencies has commenced reviewing their business processes and undertaking change management activity to match agency environments to the solution.

"They are well and truly advanced in their implementation journey, and each will progress to implement in the coming months," said Monkley.

The ongoing process has involved a high level of public sector and industry participation, according to Monkley. DEEWR has partnered with Microsoft to deliver architecture, connectivity and application development components. NICTA and Compuware have also assisted the Department with application monitoring and performance modeling.  A gateway review earlier this year found changes to the governance structure were required, including a need for each of the participating agencies to be represented on the project governance committee. These changes have since been implemented. Many of the challenges experienced by DEEWR during the expansion of PWS would also confront other jurisdictions if the solution were to be shared on a wider scale. Mills and any other technology leaders looking at the solution would need to carefully consider the management structure around a whole-of-government system solution.  DEEWR's previous experience as a public sector shared service provider has been important in its ability to manage the complex implementation and hosting process.  Prior to the decision to implement the solution on a whole-of-government level, DEEWR already provided the solution to several Federal agencies including the Department of Defence, the Australian Agency for Aid and International Development (AusAID) and the Department of Industry, Innovation, Climate Change, Science, Research and Tertiary Education. It also provides corporate services to six agencies and IT related services to nine agencies, according to Monkley. "DEEWR's been on the shared services journey for a number of years," she said. "That has helped establish a foundation for us as we move forward into the deployment of the Parliamentary Workflow Solution." "[However] the size, scale and complexity of the PWS was something we haven't done before. "We had to come to grips with a new system, a new deployment model and a whole range of new processes, including enhanced project management, new governance and reporting arrangements, and stakeholder engagement."


View the DEEWR profile on GovFacts >>>

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  • Federal
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  • Education
  • andrew mills
  • Department of Education
  • Employment and Work Place Relations
  • Parliamentary Workflow System
  • Susan Monkley