​Australian government to bring all services online by 2025

The Coalition has labelled its own digital transformation strategy as a 'bold' plan that will make government accountable.
Written by Asha Barbaschow, Contributor

The federal government wants to make all of its services digital by 2025, in what Minister for Human Services and Digital Transformation Michael Keenan called a "bold" vision for the future of Australia.

The Commonwealth on Wednesday released its Vision 2025: We will deliver world-leading digital services for the benefit of all Australians, a 48-page strategy [PDF] prepared by the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) that says the plan is to not only to bring all services online within the next six years, but to be counted as one of the world's top three digital governments.

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"It is not enough to keep pace with the private sector. In many cases we need to deliver even better services, policies, and experiences," the strategy explains.

The strategy is centred on three main priorities: Government that's easy to deal with, which includes offering personalised and integrated services such as through the government-wide adoption of myGovID; government that's informed by citizens, especially in relation to the use of citizen data; and government that's fit for the digital age, which includes expanding digital capability, developing modern infrastructure, and providing accountability.

Accompanying the strategy is a roadmap that breaks down the priorities into over 100 milestones, colour-coded against the three priorities, and organised into years from 2018 through 2020.

A handful of initiatives have already been classed as completed, including the analysis of blockchain, creating a digital service standard, opening up government data, and overhauling the myGov inbox function.

Among the 33 items ticked off the to-do list so far, is the federal government's contentious My Health Record, which the DTA has marked as having one of two elements being complete due to it being available online.

Where My Health Record is concerned, the government in the coming year will move to add myGovID functionality to the online medical file.

One of the last features to come online will be the once every five years Australia-wide Census data collection activity, which will allow citizens to access the eCensus on all devices at least 48 hours prior to Census night.

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Guiding the strategy and the roadmap are five principles: Putting people's needs at the centre of policy and service design; proving trustworthiness; partnering to deliver value; continuously exploring and implementing innovation; and delivering value for money.

"Part of the reason for releasing a seven-year strategy is to share our vision and give the public time to consider the changes we are planning well in advance," Keenan said.

"We want to be able to talk about our future and address any questions or concerns early, so when people are ready, we can get on with the business of making life easier for everyone."

"This is vitally important because the rollout of digital services will only be successful if users have confidence in them. That is why we will be working extremely hard between now and 2025 to ensure we deliver the highest quality services that will be the envy of the world."

The government said it will report yearly on its performance.

The government's digital transformation strategy arrived earlier than expected, with Keenan in October telling the Gartner Symposium/ITxpo at the Gold Coast that the strategy would be published early next year.

At the time, he labelled it as a way for the Commonwealth to deliver tangible results and be held accountable.

"I'm very confident that the strategy will deliver on this," Keenan said previously. "As Minister for Digital Transformation, my focus is to make sure that we use technology effectively to have a positive impact on the lives of all Australians. This means ensuring that every agency, and every department across government will deliver on these drivers."


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