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All-of-government spending on ICT 'common capabilities' hits $520M in 2019

Subscriptions to common government services lifted 20 per cent during the year

Government agency subscriptions to Department of Internal Affairs "common capabilities" ICT services increased by 20 per cent in 2019, according to a Parliamentary report.

DIA reported more than 300 agencies, including 84 local authorities, now consume ICT common capabilities, co-designed and developed by the government chief digital officer's (GCDO).

In total, 300 user agencies consumed common capabilities through more than 875 subscriptions in 2019. 

Total spend on ICT common capabilities from November 2018 to November 2019 was $520 million, with half a billion dollars in total system savings achieved since common capabilities commenced in 2010.

An ICT common capability is defined as any technology that can be used by one or more agencies, or across all-of-government, to support business outcomes.

Twenty-three common capability services are currently listed on the government's Digital website. these range from cloud and software subscriptions, managed services and "desktop as a service" to telecommunications and other ICT services.

Major vendors represented include Amazon (AWS), Microsoft, SAP and Oracle.

ICT common capabilities allow agencies to share ICT investment, reduce duplication by pooling resources and move to a shared set of standards, the website says. 

Leveraging the scale of government agencies as a single customer also avoids the need for agencies to undertake their own full-scale procurement processes.

The ICT common capabilities have also been developed using system settings and system standards to reduce and mitigate risk across government.

One service, the shared workspace, was retired at the end of 2019 because many agencies were using collaborative tools under the all-of-government Microsoft cloud, software and service Agreement (MCSSA). 

Alternative collaborative tools were also available on the government's Marketplace.

DIA also reported on its efforts to promote digital inclusion, develop and provide "joined-up" services for key life events and digital identity, including replatforming parts of the RealMe identity service.

DIA contracted Unify Solutions to shift part of RealMe to Microsoft's Azure cloud earlier this month