The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has approached the market, seeking ways to upgrade its Infocentre service following an increase in information requests and the expectation that demand will grow as the carbon price debate continues.
The ACCC's Infocentre fields information requests, complaints and inquiries from consumers and businesses, which may occur through telephone, email, fax, letters or online forms. In its request for expressions of interest, the ACCC stated that contact volumes have increased by 75 per cent over the past three years.
The ACCC expects contact volume to the Australian Energy Regulator, which is included in the ACCC's responsibilities, to increase by 30 to 40 per cent in the next 12 months, as carbon pricing becomes a more important issue. A carbon pricing scheme is set to come into effect on 1 July 2012.
As a result, it is seeking expressions of interest from the market for a commercial off-the-shelf product that will serve two core purposes: managing its contacts; and navigating internal documents, policies and procedures.
The contact-management system will allow it to de-duplicate its existing consumer data, accurately record and track how customer inquiries are handled and modernise the security and auditing controls of its systems.
Managing its own internal information will be achieved through an "operator's workbench", which is expected to be integrated with the contact-management system. Its purpose is to provide operators with the ability to gather information and research material from the ACCC's website, internal intranet and its existing document-management system.
The ACCC has also stated that it may, at a later date, extend the two systems beyond its enforcement and compliance division to other business units within the commission.