Services minister pushes ‘whole of government technology architecture’

DTA working on reusable building blocks for government services

Lego building blocks
Iker Urteaga / Unsplash (CC0)

Government services minister Stuart Robert says he has asked the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) to engage with the Commonwealth’s largest IT shops — Defence, Home Affairs, the Australian Taxation Office and Services Australia — to create a taskforce that can “explore what a single whole of government technology architecture may look like”.

In remarks prepared for an address to the Australian Information Industry Association in Canberra, the minister said that the taskforce “will start by identifying critical technology capabilities that support broad business outcomes and progressively develop a more nuanced view of strategic capabilities across government”.

“This will help us understand both the common functions we need to perform across the whole of government as well as discrete capabilities specific to the business needs of individual agencies,” Robert said.

Last year the DTA released its Digital Platforms Strategy that outlined the agency’s aim of promoting the development of reusable “building blocks” that be employed across government, delivering capabilities such as payments, notifications and ‘Tell Us Once’.

Robert said that consistent with that strategy, the work of the new taskforce will help guide investment in “scalable platforms across whole of government in an effective and more efficient way”.

“For example, if we are already investing taxpayers’ money in developing a digital identity system, or a payments utility, or a voice biometrics capability, we should investigate whether such platforms can be scaled up, rather than simply start doing the same thing again and again, at great effort, time and expense,” the minister said.

Robert’s speech comes just over a year after the government unveiled the DTA-developed Digital Transformation Strategy.

As part of that strategy, the government aims to have all services available through online channels by 2025.

The DTA today issued a one-year update (PDF) on the implementation of the strategy.

Copyright © 2019 IDG Communications, Inc.

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