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Suppliers working on myGov need to know their Netflix

by Cameron Sinclair •
Free resource

The Federal government is inviting tenders to expand the scope and services provided on the myGov digital platform. Intending respondents would do well to familiarise themselves with the ‘Netflix Model’ outlined a number of times by the responsible Minister, Stuart Robert and the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA). 

The myGov digital portal was launched in May 2013 to provide a single access point for various government agencies, including Medicare, ATO, Centrelink, NDIS, and My Health Record. 

Since its inception, the myGov platform has frequently been described as "one digital front door for all of government". 

The government has been developing a new digital experience platform, dubbed GovDXP, to run alongside and eventually replace myGov. 

The 2021-22 Budget included $200.1 million over two years from 2021-22 (including $54.0 million in capital funding) “to enhance the myGov service.” 

The latest tender continues ‘the ‘Netflix Model’ vision which was outlined in a DTA blog post in March 2020, just days before the pandemic upended government priorities. The vision has been reiterated by Minister Stuart Robert in several subsequent public speeches.  

“An integration layer will sit over the myGov systems, providing a way for information to flow back and forth between the myGov website and the myGov systems. The platform will collect services, apps and other customer experience capabilities to give users everything they need. This will operate on a 'Netflix' model, providing users with what they need to do next based on their previous interactions with government services — similar to Netflix’s 'recommended for you'.” 

In an address to the National Press Club on 7 July 2020, Robert described an app that can be personalised, ‘like Netflix’: 

“For example, today you can personalise your Netflix feed or your Facebook page, so there is no excuse why you shouldn’t be able to do it when dealing with government. We know Australians already expect the new myGov to proactively serve relevant content and personalise experiences by anticipating and delivering services in a similar way to consumer products like Netflix.” 

“Imagine having a personalised dashboard so Australians can see their claims, their payments, if they have debts and how they were raised and other services or payments and assistance available to them.” 

"if there's a debt, what the debt is exactly and how it was raised." 

The second release of the test site was publicly launched in September 2020. 

Use of the myGov app accelerated during Australia’s vaccine rollout during 2021, as it functioned as the gateway to access to a Medicare online account or the Express Plus Medicare mobile app to allow users to view information stored on the Australian Immunisation Register (AIR) in their My Health Record. 

Minister Robert again outlined his vision to improve myGov in a speech to the AIIA in December 2021: 

“Our vision by 2025 is for myGov to become the world leading, national digital platform that delivers simple, helpful, respectful and transparent services that meet the needs and expectations of all Australians.” 

“We invested over $200 million in the last Federal Budget alone to deliver a better, more tailored myGov that makes it easier for people to discover, access and manage the government services they need.” 

“The new myGov will enter the final stage of Beta testing in 10 days, including an app. We have listened closely to our customers to incrementally design and deliver a modern, flexible and personalised platform. I look forward to it rolling out more widely, including as an app, next year.” 

A few days later, also in December 2021, Robert confirmed that "more than 6 million Australians now choosing to use myGovID to access online services safely, securely and conveniently.” 

McKinsey and Deloitte have won much of the work developing GovDXP in recent years, with King Wood and Mallesons bought in to provide legal advice. McKinsey got almost $1 million to develop the business case (CN3676613). Deloitte’s work developing GovDXP (CN3678817) has a total value of $28 million. 

The myGov program was the subject of an ANAO performance audit in 2017, and the platform crashed in March 2020 when thousands of Australians attempted to register for income support payments in the first days of COVID 19 lockdowns. 

Digital Marketplace Request for Tender Requirements 

Applications close on 10 March, and the contract is expected to run for eight months, from April to December 2022. 

According to the tender documents, the Enhanced myGov service operating model will need to: 

  1. “Address all areas of operational support in order to support citizens to access government services in the most seamless way. This includes, but is not limited to, customer service operations, other relevant channels that support myGov users and member services, financial sustainment and system operations. 

  1. Be scalable. As the myGov platform and its available services evolve over time to cross government services, the operating model will need to be able to adapt with agility. 

  1. Recognise myGov as a platform that is managed and hosted by Services Australia but integrates with many other government platforms and services. 

  1. Acknowledge the current myGov platform and service operating model is not the same as the Enhanced myGov platform and the service operating needs of the future. 

  1. Consider workforce volume and capabilities needed for delivery, and operations, noting these are expected to expand within Enhanced myGov. 

  1. Incorporate all systems involved in the delivery of the operating model across whole of Government.”   

  • Federal
  • IT Services
  • Human Services