Qld’s new strategy: Whole-of-government, digital-first

Published on the 19/09/2017 | Written by Jonathan Cotton

Queensland govt_Digital by default

Calculates potential savings of some $400 million per year just by replacing paper-based transactions…

The Queensland State Government has committed to what it describes as a “digital by default” strategy that will see more services available online and the use of machine learning, data analytics and cloud tech.

Known as DIGITAL1ST: Advancing our digital future, the strategy for 2017-2021 proposes the government work more closely with industry to improve services and streamline consumer access to information.

“Most customers now want digital by default,” says the document, “and our workforce wants to design and deliver digital services to an exceptional standard.”

“So, we are working with our citizens, stakeholders and communities, building connections and trust, as well as drawing on knowledge, experience, insight and creativity to make our vision a reality, to deliver the best outcomes for all Queenslanders.”

The government is predicting “hundreds of millions of dollars a year” in savings under a new digital strategy.

“The cost efficiencies driven by digital technology are really starting to make an impact so we can invest in better services for our communities,” said minister for innovation, science and innovation, Leeanne Enoch MP at the launch last week.

“In just one example, by replacing paper-based transactions with over 400 new online services, the government can save an estimated $13 per transaction. This amounts to around $400 million per year that can be redirected to other services, and there is so much more to come.”

When implemented the strategy should reduce the time Queenslanders are spending in queues, filling out paperwork and waiting for forms to be processed.

“Hundreds of government services still need you to spend time out of your day to visit a counter with a form and ID when you want to apply for things like a licence, vehicle permits, or land tax payments,” Enoch said.

“By freeing up employees from manual processing activities, the Palaszczuk Government will be able to reinvest the time saved into the continual improvement of its services to Queenslanders.”

Enoch said the strategy will also increase opportunities for startups and small-and-medium-sized enterprises in Queensland and make it easier for the ICT industry to work with government to deliver new digital services.

“Whether you are a startup, SME or a larger player, the Queensland Government is committed to supporting digital businesses by being a better lead customer of innovation,” says the Digital1st strategy document.

“Given how rapidly technologies are changing, and the opportunities that platforms provide, we know we need to partner in new and different ways with industry if we are to provide the best services to Queenslanders. So we are going to continue to diversify our supplier base, create new testbeds to co-design digital solutions and reduce the burden of doing business with government.”

The government began phasing in its new IT contracting framework earlier this month.

The document recognises the need to keep initiatives current, and commits to regular review and reporting on its progress.

“We know that our world and technology is changing at a rapid pace, so the actions listed as part of DIGITAL1ST are at varying stages of their lifecycle. Other actions will develop during the life of DIGITAL1ST. We will need to respond to changes in the community and use emerging technologies to benefit Queensland.”

“We will review and update our initiatives regularly, reporting on our achievements and outlining ‘what’s next’. This will demonstrate that DIGITAL1ST is making a difference to Queensland.”

Read the Digital1st strategy document.

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