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StatsNZ and others follow IRD's lead with Oracle enterprise support services

StatsNZ and others follow IRD's lead with Oracle enterprise support services

IRD's enterprise cloud software enabled it to roll out multiple COVID-19 relief programmes

Credit: IDG

StatsNZ is joining others implementing cloud-based enterprise support services (ESS) software from Oracle using process models and configurations developed by the Inland Revenue Department.

In one of its regular transformation updates, the tax office said it had now shared its implementation models with 32 other agencies and was working with a number of agencies including Customs, StatsNZ and one more agency, the name of which was redacted from the document.

These agencies had chosen to implement the cloud-based Oracle technology Inland Revenue was using to support its back-office functions.

IRD is effectively making aspects of its own Oracle ESS implementation, called Ātea, available for use by other agencies, putting the US vendor in a powerful position to win further contracts.

The Department of Internal Affairs, which previously used parts of IRD's existing SAP ERP implementation, tested the market in January for enterprise support services but no announcement has yet been made an award.

IRD, which awarded $9.6 million in contracts to Oracle in the nine months to 31 March 2020 (see chart), has said such shared services capabilities were also expected to be part of its Oracle ESS deliverable.

Credit: IRD

Last November, Reseller News reported Minister for Inland Revenue Stuart Nash had reported that the department had adopted "out-of-the box" processes for ESS using Oracle's software-as-a-service suite and following a standard process model.

This was also being shared with other agencies. 

"Inland Revenue is testing whether its configuration can be reused by other agencies as an accelerator for back-office system replacement," the minister explained at the time. 

"The New Zealand Customs Service has signaled its intention to adopt the model and test whether the Oracle configuration can be used to replace its finance system.

It now appears not just Customs and StatsNZ, but several other agencies are preparing to do likewise.

IRD also reported it had replanning the final phases of its transformation rollout, implying a possible extension of the expected completion date as a result of COVID-19.

The department's new software had been instrumental in helping IRD to deliver new pandemic relief and other measures and these had been prioritised over the last few months.

"In light of COVID-19, Inland Revenue is now re-planning the final changes of transformation, the work to close the programme, and the move to its new operating model," Nash's latest update said.

"It is too early to say what the implications for the time-frames, costs and benefits of the transformation programme will be. 

"My working assumption is that Inland Revenue will complete transformation within the existing funding envelope approved in 2015 by government. 

"Inland Revenue will keep the Minister of Finance and me fully informed as it thinking develops and will report back to Cabinet in November 2020."

Any such extension of the timeframe for completion of the project could be used to further enhance the shared Oracle offering, the update said.

"We could choose to leverage Inland Revenue’s capabilities to design and deliver our COVID-19 responses, after having considered the implications and trade-offs. 

"This could also provide opportunities for other agencies to learn from Inland Revenue’s experience and expertise and to leverage the investment made in transformation.

"Many agencies are already doing so, particularly in the enterprise support services area."


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