NSW Government unveils digital strategy for development of user-centric public services

- May 23, 2017 3 MIN READ
nsw government

Having highlighted a focus on digitising government in the Innovation Strategy it released last November, the NSW Government has today unveiled a digital transformation strategy further detailing how it will look to update its processes to better serve NSW residents.

Unveiled by Minister for Finance, Services and Property, Victor Dominello at CeBIT this morning, the strategy prioritises customer experience, data, and ‘digital on the inside’, which will be embedded across service design, prioritisation, and delivery.

In his foreword, Dominello said the strategy is “not just an upgrade”, but rather will provide “the backbone for the delivery of next level, improved, user-centric services” and ensure the state government is “connected, customer-focused, and outcomes driven”.

“We are only part of the way along our transformation journey towards a truly digital government. The digital transformation will require a mindset shift and cultural change in the public sector to provide customer-centric services in the digital economy,” Dominello stated.

To put this into practice, departmental Secretaries will be required to report performance against the strategy every six months to the government chief information and digital officer, Damon Rees.

The digital standard for the priority of customer experience states government services must be digital by default; designed around customer needs and digital capability; integrated and seamless, using common standards and platforms where appropriate; and accessible and easy to use for all customers with varying levels of digital literacy.

Much of this will focus on further upgrading the government’s Service NSW offering, which was launched in 2013. The government reported that, since launch, 1.5 million customers have registered for a MyServiceNSW account, with these customers able to conduct more than 970 different types of transactions online.

The focus on data, meanwhile, details that all investment decisions, policies, and service delivery models be informed by data insights; that data be open, collected and shared in a digital, accessible format wherever possible; that data be published in real time where possible, with visualisation and mapping tools to ensure accessible and actionable insights; and that legislative provisions for data sharing be observed, with protections around personal and health information.

The strategy states that a “data ecosystem” will be established to optimise the sharing and use of data across government. The government has had a particular focus on data, with Dominello having spearheaded the development of the Data Analytics Centre while Minister for Innovation and retaining responsibility for it in his new role.

The priority of ‘Digital on the inside’ will see the development of user-centric government processes, designed around the needs of users by applying design thinking and other techniques; the streamlining of business processes across agencies and groups in government to avoid duplication, with ‘whole of government’ platforms to be used to increase efficiency; and the automation of ‘routine, repetitive, structured and rules-based’ job tasks, where appropriate.

These digital priorities will be underpinned by four ‘digital enablers’: technology, cyber security, legislation, and delivery.

With the NSW government also keen on promoting the state’s startup chops at CeBIT, NSW Minister for Innovation, Matt Kean yesterday announced the government would be spearheading another mission to the Tel Aviv landing pad, following on from last year’s trip.

Ten NSW fintech and cybersecurity startups will be selected to participate in the program in September.

“The chance for some of our most innovative startups to take their business models to Tel Aviv and network with fellow entrepreneurs is a once in a lifetime opportunity,” Kean said.

“Tel Aviv is where the action is, so the knowledge successful startups bring home to NSW will be invaluable to their businesses and the local ecosystem.”

Image: Victor Dominello. Source: Twitter.