ATO wants to make it easier for businesses to receive emails and notifications

The Australian Taxation Office is on the hunt for a service provider to deliver an email service so businesses only have to access one inbox to receive updates.

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The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) wants to ensure businesses can receive all email correspondences and notifications from various government agencies in a single inbox, as part of the federal government's plans to modernise the business register program.

The ATO has issued a request for tender seeking for a software provider that can deliver a single mailbox per registered business entity that would enable individuals to access and action mail delivered to their business mailbox.

Being able to receive all email correspondence and notifications in a single inbox, according to the ATO, would "enable the community of business users to be informed and up to date with their obligations and entitlements".

According to tender documents, the mail software would form part of the backend infrastructure of the ATO's business inbox and notifications service and provide mailbox services for creating mailboxes, managing mailbox permissions, setting status of emails, routing mail to mailboxes, reading mail from mailboxes, and triggering new mail notifications.

The agency added that the mailbox service would be integrated with the ATO's identity and access management systems for the authorisation of a user's access to mail in an entity's mailbox.

The service is also expected to be designed to be used by other government agencies in the future, the ATO stated.

Read also: There are 84 high-cost IT projects underway by the Australian government

Last September, the Australian government announced it was pouring AU$800 million into a Digital Business Package to get more businesses online. Under that package, AU$420 million is being dedicated towards implementing a modern business register program. The idea is to allow businesses to view, update, and maintain their business register in one location.

"We should see all see digital transformation as an opportunity, not as a threat … we want new businesses in Australia to be born digital," Treasurer Josh Frydenberg said of the package during the announcement.

At the time, Shadow Assistant Minister for Treasury Andrew Leigh agreed that while technology is "incredibly important", he raised concerns about the government's ability to deliver the initiatives announced in the package.

"Rationalising business registers is something that Parliament passed previously, getting a director identification number is something that should have been done years ago. Some of these measures are re-announcements … the best way of getting Australians engaged with technology is to expand education, and right now you're not seeing that with universities."

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