What’s on the government agenda for optimising digital transformation?

By 10 August 2017Blog

With the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA), the Federal Government has established a strong focus on service delivery. This forms part of the wider National Innovation and Science Agenda (NISA), which has been promoting significant growth in our fintech businesses.

Following the 2017 Budget and a new leader for the DTA, there have been several updates to government focal points for the nationwide shift to the digital plan – here’s what’s changed.

New leadership for digital transformation

On 1 May this year, Gavin Slater was appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer of the DTA. With a 30-year history in financial services, he oversaw the transfer of many functions from the Department of Finance to the DTA.

The alignment of financial services and digital transformation is important. Puppet’s State of DevOps 2017 report indicated that the sector has the second-highest adoption of DevOps in the world behind tech, with 14 per cent of financial services businesses already using the methodology.

Fintech is a focus of new government initiatives.

Transfer of these responsibilities to the DTA forms part of a refresh for the agencies, which took on significantly more responsibility as of October 2016. As Slater notes, these changes (and recent budget announcements) will help all Australian businesses keep up with technological advancement.

More than $70m of funding for digital advancement

The 2017-18 Federal Budget included $70.1 million for the DTA, enabling it to push into its second stage.

“This will support our work on shared government platforms, a new cybersecurity function, digital capability building across the public service and continued work on Govpass – our digital identity program,” Slater stated.

That entails a focus on user-oriented service delivery across all forms of government. Transparency and clarity on the costs, risks and benefits of all digital transformation in our government departments is to be improved, putting those who use state and federal services at the front and centre of the way things are changed.

Nowhere is this clearer than in the results of the Digital Marketplace.

More opportunities for SMEs

One of the DTA’s flagship projects, (under advisory of the NISA) is the Digital Marketplace. This allows government buyers to secure digital services from Australian businesses, and has generated $15.3 million of contracts thus far. Of these, 82 per cent have gone to SMEs.

The government's digital optimisation plans have benefited many small businesses.

The Digital Marketplace is also an agile project  – the incremental approach that many companies are already employing to great effect. It’s a sign that the government is open to adopting strong methodologies to not just help new businesses, but also improve its own processes and delivery.

Recognition of the changing world

Further Budget measures have embraced the digital world, enabling greater growth in Australia’s businesses. For example:

  • From 1 July, the purchase of digital currency, bitcoin, will be exempt from GST, bringing it in line with other currencies.
  • Proprietary companies can now use crowd-sourced equity funding.
  • A new sandbox regime means many entrepreneurs may no longer have to opt for an Australian financial services license.
  • An investment of $13 million to bring more women into STEM research roles.

This is essentially recognition that digital transformation and disruption has forever changed the Australian economy. There are new ways for businesses to begin, grow and operate just as the processes by which companies deliver services evolve, so must legislation to account for this.

It creates a framework within which businesses can thrive, but to properly succeed those businesses will need the right guidance. This is where the team at Avocado steps in. With decades of experience in optimisation, acceleration and transformation, we can help your company make the most of the government’s advances.

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