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                    [post_date] => 2017-10-13 13:30:47
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                    [post_content] => 

Americans are more scared of government and its corrupt officials than they are of anything else, including nuclear war or climate change. Three quarters (74. 5 percent) of people surveyed in the annual ‘Chapman University Survey on American Fears’ study said they were afraid of corrupt government officials. Second on the list, at 55 percent, was also a government issue – concern over ‘Trumpcare’, or what the unpredictable US President may do to the American Health Act. Rounding out the Top Ten were: pollution of oceans, rivers and lakes (53.1 percent), pollution of drinking water (50.4 percent), not having enough money for the future (50.2 percent), high medical bills (48.4 percent), that the US will be involved in another World War (48.4 percent), global warming and climate change (48.0 percent), North Korea using weapons (47.5 percent), and air pollution (44.9 percent). The results are very different from the 2016 survey. In that study corrupt government officials were also placed first, but were mentioned by only 60.6 percent of respondents. Americans are becoming much more anxious overall. Second last year was fear of a terrorist attack (41.0 percent). That grew this year to 43.3 percent, but in terms of position it declined sharply to 13th position. All of the top 15 fears this year rated higher than the second greatest fear last year. “The 2017 list of fears clearly reflects political unrest and uncertainty in the wake of Donald Trump’s election as president,” says the report. “Increased tensions with North Korea, concerns about sweeping changes proposed to health care and discussion (at the time the survey was administered) of the United States leaving the Paris Climate Accords produced a much different list from 2016. “What is most striking about American fear in 2017 is that environmental fears, including water pollution and drinking water quality, figure more prominently than ever before. Environmental issues never cracked the top ten fears in our previous surveys. “In 2017, there was a sharp increase in environmental fears, likely due to fears about policy changes in Washington. The Trump Administration has charted a drastically different path; ordering the US Environmental Protection Agency not to enforce major pollution laws, and firing the EPA’s entire Science Advisory Board. The survey was a random sample of 1,207 American adults. Chapman University is a private Christian institution in Orange County, California. The survey findings are available here. [post_title] => Americans scared of government - survey [post_excerpt] => Americans are more scared of government and its corrupt officials than they are of anything else, including nuclear war or climate change. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => americans-scared-government [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-10-16 13:00:25 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-10-16 02:00:25 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=28267 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [1] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 28243 [post_author] => 673 [post_date] => 2017-10-11 15:30:23 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-10-11 04:30:23 [post_content] => A leaked report to the NSW Government has recommended that cruise ships be permitted to use the Royal Australian Navy dockyard at Garden Island. At present cruise ships use the Overseas Passenger Terminal at Circular Quay and a secondary terminal at White Bay, 3km west of the CBD. But to use White Bay they must go under the Harbour Bridge, which is impossible for the new breed of larger cruise liners. The number of cruise ships coming to Sydney at more than doubled in the last five years, and already some operators are saying that they are avoiding Sydney because of congestion. In July the State government commissioned a report on the matter, asking for recommendations on how to handle the increasing demand. Heading the inquiry was Peter Collins, who was state Liberal leader and Leader of the Opposition from 1995 to 1998. His former seat of Willoughby is now held by Premier Gladys Berejiklian. Collins was also a longtime office in the RAN Reserve, reaching the rank of Captain. He handed his report to the Government on 6 October. Its contents have not been made public, but in an increasingly common practice, it seems to have been deliberately leaked the Murdoch press. Sydney’s Daily Telegraph has run a splash on it. It says the Collins report recommends the use of Garden Island, a massive facility in the middle of the city, close to Kings Cross and on the eastern side of Woolloomooloo Bay. As a military base, Garden Island certainly has the capacity, but agreement would have to be reached with the Navy and the Federal Government to allow its use for commercial purposes. Immigration and other facilities would also have to be built. The other option considered and rejected by Collins was to move some cruise ships to Botany Bay, which is where most of Sydney’s commercial port activity now takes place. But Port Botany or another facility on Botany Bay would also need new facilities, and it is an unattractive industrial precinct 10 km from the CBD. The recommendation is likely to reignite debate about the future of Garden Island. It is a prime waterfront location in the middle of Sydney, and ripe for redevelopment. But it is also Australia’s largest naval base, and moving it is not a trivial exercise. During the 2013 election campaign, Prime Minister Kevin Rudd suggested moving the Navy out of Sydney Harbour, an idea that was ridiculed at the time.  But there is no logical reason for the Navy to be located there. There have been many suggestions over the years that it be moved to Jervis Bay 150 km south of Sydney, where the Navy already has a presence, or to the north of Australia, possibly Darwin, which is much closer to the areas where the Navy mostly operates. This is likely to happen eventually. Garden Island is an incredibly valuable and very high profile location. It would make for a massive urban renewal project. The Daily Telegraph also ran a piece on what a potential redevelopment would look like, with cruise ship facilities, parks and gardens, and apartments. It would be much bigger and more visible than Barangaroo. Industry body Tourism and Transport Forum Australia (TTF) has called on the NSW Government to adopt Collins’ recommendation for the cruise-ship industry to be allowed permanent access to Garden Island. TTF Chief Executive Margy Osmond said Australia’s cruise industry is now worth $5 billion annually and needed better facilities. “The cruise industry reference group and its head Peter Collins must be congratulated on coming up with a common sense solution to address Sydney’s looming cruise crisis,” she said. “Cruise shipping is the most dynamic and fastest growing sector of the Australian visitor economy, and has rapidly become one of the great success stories for Australian tourism. “But with port facilities at Circular Quay at full capacity, and an increasing number of ships too large to pass beneath Sydney Harbour Bridge to access the White Bay terminal, the only deep-water option in the city which is able to accommodate growth is Garden Island. “Port Botany is not the answer. The big drawcard is Sydney Harbour. It is not just international tourists that crave the 'big picture' moment of sailing through the heads - this is also about Aussie tourists who want to feel that sense of excitement and pride that comes from sailing in and out of their Harbour City. “I commend the NSW Government and the Minister for Roads, Maritime and Freight Melinda Pavey for initiating this review, and I urge them to adopt the recommendations of this report and allow cruise ships to access the infrastructure at Garden Island.” [post_title] => Park cruise ships at Garden Island, Government told [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => park-cruise-ships-garden-island-government-told [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-10-13 08:45:07 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-10-12 21:45:07 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=28243 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [2] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 28215 [post_author] => 673 [post_date] => 2017-10-09 06:13:28 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-10-08 19:13:28 [post_content] => The Federal Government’s Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF), announced with great fanfare 18 months ago, has yet to invest in single project. “This facility will provide financing to build the transport, energy, water and communications infrastructure needed in our north,” said Josh Frydenberg, the Minister for Industry Innovation and Science, when he announced the fund in May 2016. “This will create jobs, enhance investment, and unlock the full potential of this vibrant region to grow the northern Australian economy.” Fine words, but there appears to be little urgency to putting them into action. The NAIF came into existence on 1 July 2016. Costs so far include over $1 million for wages, $630,000 for directors’ fees, $100,000 for travel, and $13,000 for functions. CEO Laurie Walker, a banker and lawyer who has worked at a senior level for both ANZ and CBA, receives a $410,000 salary. The agency’s website shows that she has given many presentations at conferences, but she has yet to sign off on a single investment, after more than a year on the job. So far there is nothing to show for the agency’s establishment, and the natives are getting restless. Two weeks ago the Government said the first project would be announced that week, but still nothing has happened. It is widely believed that the first investment is intended to be a low interest $1 billion loan to Indian coal company Adani for a rail line to its controversial giant Carmichael coal mine in Queensland’s Galilee Basin. But that announcement seems to be on hold as disquiet grows about the government’s energy policy and about Adani itself. On 2 October the ABCs Four Corners TV program exposed the Indian company’s sometimes dodgy business practices, and community resistance to the mine culminated in major demonstrations across Australia last weekend. Some have blamed NAIF’s inaction on political uncertainty. Resources Minister Matt Canavan had responsibility for the agency, but resigned from Cabinet after doubts were raised about his citizenship. Responsibility now lives with Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce, who is also under a cloud. Mr Joyce says this is not a problem, and that NAIF is a statutory body that can make its own investment decisions. But the fact that it has not yet made any, well over a year after it was formed, has called into question why it is needed at all. Even Rupert Murdoch’s News Limited, normally supportive of the government, is critical of the inaction. “$5 billion North Australia fund yet to approve a single project,” screamed a headline in the Courier-Mail last month. “Still waiting for NAIF,” said the Townsville Bulletin. Predictably, the Opposition is not happy. Bill Shorten told the NT News, another Murdoch outlet, in a prominently displayed article, that the Northern Australia Infrastructure Fund was a “poster child for inaction. “Its dealings are opaque ... nothing has happened,” he was quoted as saying. “Some of its directors are faced with allegations of conflict of interest. It is like a high rollers club and you don’t get in without $100 million.” The same article gave examples of investors in the Kimberley region of Western Australia laying off staff because of NAIF’s inaction. NAIF has also been criticised for blocking freedom of information requests about information as basic as the dates and locations of its board meeting. It says it is keeping this information secret  because of concerns over protests and “media interest.” It is not a good look. Nor is it likely to get much better. If NAIF approves the Adani loan, it is likely to face a High Court challenge because of Adani’s past behaviour and the project’s proven environmental challenges. If it does not, its continued inability to make any investment decision at all will also cause it problems. NAIF, uncapitalised, is a word from the French which means an innocent person who doesn’t know what’s happening. It seems an appropriate acronym. [post_title] => $5 billion fund has done nothing [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => 5-billion-fund-done-nothing [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-10-10 11:10:18 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-10-10 00:10:18 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=28215 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [3] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 28194 [post_author] => 673 [post_date] => 2017-10-06 10:12:55 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-10-05 23:12:55 [post_content] => Millions of dollars will be stripped from the operating budgets of NSW’s government-owned transport agencies, Fairfax Media is reporting. Quoting ‘a briefing note to staff obtained by Fairfax Media’ from Transport for NSW secretary Tim Reardon, the department’s deputy secretaries have been told that operating budgets for all the state’s transport divisions have been cut by 15 percent for this financial year. "Over the last six years in Transport for NSW we have made savings to meet our requirements, however our [operating expenditure] costs have increased," the note is quoted as saying. One result of this is an immediate freeze on hiring casual staff or creating any new permanent positions. Transport for NSW would seem to be a victim of its own success. Sydney Trains have reported a 15 percent increase in patronage over the last 12 months, leading to severe overcrowding on some lines. Buses and ferries also have more passengers. The state’s transport budget is under strain with the cost of Sydney’s new Metro line and upgrades to existing train and bus services. Predictably, the Rail, Tram and Bus Union (RTBU) is not happy. The union’s NSW Secretary, Alex Claassens, issued an immediate statement that said the cuts will result in a serious decline in services. “Revelations today that the NSW Government is stripping hundreds of millions from transport agencies prove the NSW Government has no interest at all in improving public transport in the state,” Claassens said. “This is just another example of Transport Minister, Andrew Constance’s complete incompetence. On top of all of the horrendous transport decisions he’s made lately, now he’s shown that he can’t manage his budget either. “The people of NSW deserve a world-class transport system. They’re not going to get it while this Minister is in charge. How the Minister thinks you can strip millions of dollars out of an operation and expect it to continue working as usual is beyond me.” There has been no official announcement of the cuts from the NSW Government. [post_title] => NSW transport 'hiring freeze' [post_excerpt] => [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => nsw-transport-hiring-freeze [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-10-06 19:29:51 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-10-06 08:29:51 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=28194 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [4] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 28109 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-09-25 13:49:52 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-25 03:49:52 [post_content] => Keith Dodds The procurement reforms recently announced by Angus Taylor, Assistant Minister for Digital Transformation and Gavin Slater, the new CEO of the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA), represent a step in the right direction for digital innovation in government – but when it comes to breaking the back of old-school technology procurement, we are only just scratching the surface. The Australian government is the largest single buyer of IT services in Australia, spending $6.5 billion annually. It’s all taxpayer-funded and much of it is being misspent. For 40 years, big, multinational software package vendors have enjoyed procurement practices that have effectively enabled them to hold the government and its citizens ‘hostage’. Their long-running, multi-year contracts with big bang deliverables have cost government and taxpayers dearly, often with disastrous results (think #CensusFail and Queensland Health to name just two). Limiting contracts to three years, with no extensions, and capping contract amounts at $100 million will certainly curb some of the damage. However, many applauded the reforms for their potential to open up new opportunities for the local start-up community, yet existing panel arrangements favour an old-school approach that benefits large incumbents and encourages near-monopolistic practices – while continuing to stifle younger, smaller and more innovative companies. It is not just start-ups, either, as many smaller service providers have struggled for years against the current contract and procurement system.   When the Turnbull government promised to have a “whole of government digital transformation strategy” in place by the end of 2016 if re-elected, our team helped the DTA facilitate a process of intensive interviews and workshops to cross-fertilise thinking across a wide range of federal government agencies. The end result was a Government Digital Transformation Roadmap. The procurement taskforce report acknowledges the need for “a comprehensive ICT strategy to help guide agencies’ ICT procurement decisions in order to drive the government’s digital transformation agenda”. However, government won’t be able to truly embrace innovative digital transformation until it creates the right conditions – an environment that breeds and nurtures suppliers who are capable of delivering the innovative solutions it needs. In the meantime, the delay is costing hundreds of millions of dollars during a time of fiscal restraint. The waste must stop. In the UK, the Government Digital Service took steps in the very early stages of its digital transformation to break the procurement stranglehold of entrenched players. A plethora of new suppliers are now serving the UK Government, and taxpayers, as a result. This is one of the reasons the UK (and other European countries) are further advanced when it comes to citizen-centric digital services. In Australia, we need to set an aggressive, mandatory deadline for the replacement of the outdated panel system and establish a truly open marketplace in its place. The DTA’s Digital Marketplace was intended to do this, but many large agencies are barely using it (if at all). The government must also look to expand its use of open source. The government’s Digital Service Standard mandates the use of open standards where appropriate, making all new source code open by default and measuring performance against KPI reported on a public dashboard. Yet closed, proprietary packages remain the rule, not the exception. Finally, it is critical that compliance with these objectives is made mandatory and public. The DTA’s ‘Performance Dashboard’ aims to “make data open and accessible by measuring the performance of Australian government services” and promote government transparency, but it does not report on contract awards by vendor, longevity, open source versus proprietary solutions, etc. Such visibility is required to make and measure demonstrable progress and to adequately serve the public interest, which at the end of the day, is the government’s primary obligation. Keith Dodds is the director of client relations in Australia for ThoughtWorks.   [post_title] => Digital procurement needs major reforms [post_excerpt] => Antiquated government procurement is still impending innovative digital transformation. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => digital-procurement-needs-major-reforms [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-09-25 17:56:19 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-09-25 07:56:19 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=28109 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [5] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 28094 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-09-22 09:00:40 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-21 23:00:40 [post_content] => The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) has released guidance for public companies and crowd-funding platform operators to support them in using the new crowd-sourced funding (CSF) regime, which commences on 29 September 2017. ASIC Commissioner John Price said: “Crowd-sourced funding provides an opportunity for small to medium-sized businesses to access an alternate source of capital, without the regulatory burden of traditional fundraising. ASIC's new guidance will help public companies and crowd-funding platform operators comply with their obligations under the CSF regime, while supporting investor confidence.” Regulatory Guide 261 Crowd-sourced funding: Guide for public companies (RG 261) will assist companies seeking to raise funds through CSF to understand and comply with their obligations in the new regime, particularly as many of these companies will not have experience in making public offers of their shares. ASIC has also published a template CSF offer document to help companies prepare their CSF offers. Regulatory Guide 262 Crowd-sourced funding: Guide for intermediaries (RG 262) will assist crowd funding platform operators ('intermediaries') seeking to provide a crowd-funding service, particularly as this is a new type of financial service and there are unique gatekeeper obligations for operating platforms for CSF offers. ASIC has also: ASIC consulted on its guidance and relief in June 2017 and has now published Report 544 Response to submissions on CP 288 and CP 289 on crowd-sourced funding (REP 544), detailing ASIC’s response to that consultation (refer: 17-195MR). See the ASIC website for further information on crowd-sourced funding, including information on applications:
  • By intermediaries for an AFS licence with an authorisation to provide CSF services (refer: 17-312MR).
  • To register new public companies or convert existing proprietary companies to public companies, to be eligible to raise funds using CSF and to access the corporate governance concessions.
See ASIC's Moneysmart page on crowd-sourced funding for further information on how to invest through crowd-sourced funding. The following information is available on ASIC’s website:   [post_title] => Seeking crowd-sourced funding? Talk to ASIC [post_excerpt] => ASIC has released guidance to support the new crowd-sourced funding (CSF) regime. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => seeking-crowd-sourced-funding-talk-asic [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-09-22 09:52:59 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-09-21 23:52:59 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=28094 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [6] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 28068 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-09-18 16:17:32 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-18 06:17:32 [post_content] => Alan IvoryWith more and more government departments looking at ways they can digitally transform their practices, many are looking at software as a service (SaaS) providers as a core part of that strategy. Previously only consistent in their disparate approaches, a clear set of procurement practices are now emerging to ensure the successful integration of SaaS and maximise ROI. Working with the biggest brands in the world, I have spent thousands of hours with both government and enterprise procurement teams. Over the last year, this has involved facing over 20 different procurement departments in Asia Pacific and globally across the finance, technology, telecommunications, retail, government and travel sectors. Based on that experience, below are my top tips for a smooth procurement process.
  1. Implementation first
SaaS procurement has changed the very nature of procurement teams and their core skillsets. Today’s best teams are no longer just looking at contract value or the software as a platform – they are looking at how the software will be adopted more widely by the organisation or department. This is so relevant in government where teams are often large and diversely skilled, getting the whole team on board early is essential. The success of a project depends upon the integrity of the implementation, hence executing this phase flawlessly can prevent issues from creeping up further down the line.
  1. End to end ownership
SaaS will inevitably impact multiple teams and departments. Staying involved and engaged throughout all the stakeholder reviews is the only way procurement can meaningfully understand the requirements unique to each unit. Where we used to see procurement collecting opinions, this deeper level of understanding provides a more balanced overview of the suppliers competing for the contract, so you are comparing apples with apples. For our business, this generally starts with the event team, then moves through marketing, finance and IT.
  1. The skill set
The single truth of a SaaS is it should improve your efficiency, ideally reducing the number of vendors you use. This, in turn, reduces risk, contracts, manual processes and overheads. To drive a more efficient procurement timeline, with stakeholder engagement still high at the critical onboarding phase, government organisations need to invest in personnel with a unique skillset. They will need to repeatedly bring multiple stakeholders across numerous teams together and extract the complex ways SaaS will impact, improve or challenge them. It’s a common mistake to have a ‘techy’ run this process. While they may understand the technical implications, we frequently see the engagement efforts derail due to the lack of experience in meeting facilitation.
  1. Operationally centric
Procurement based on contract terms and price is setting itself up for failure. Conversely, striving for operational excellence hallmarks the most successful outcomes. We are seeing the best procurement teams asking to complete pilots. Most SaaS providers will have a testing platform alongside their production platform.
  1. Don’t just test the software, test the integrations too
Integrations are a critical part of the SaaS procurement process. Look at how the software works within your own software climate - often something difficult to change within government. Determine the short term and long term goals and ask how the platform can fit into that. How will the data flow? What are the advantages and the costs to deploy? Leaders in this field are testing the integrations in pilot phases, ensuring they work with existing software, CRM, MA, financials, membership software, etc. Integration teams from the vendor and client agree on the integration piece and test with dummy data for a full end to end review. It’s also important to ask: what is the ROI of those integrations and what are the cost savings? Cost of implementation is no longer the primary focus, as organisations instead look to cost reductions of replacing manual processes and headcount reductions. The value inherent in provision of real-time analytics and big data enable further cost savings or revenue generation.
  1. Work in partnership
If you want the SaaS vendor to provide a project team to assist in the deployment, meet the team – not just the sales team. Make sure the team is local, has the resources, and will be dedicated to your organisation during the process. Ask who is running the project. If utilising the vendor’s professional services team, make sure there is an alignment between procurement so the expectations are unambiguous.
  1. Contract transparency
Make sure all of your internal stakeholders understand the contract. Previously a tightly-held document, we are seeing an evolution into contract transparency from the top tier procurement teams. The best implementations occur when significant time is invested in multi-team consultation and onboarding after the contract is signed, with positive uptake and a sense of ownership driving optimal engagement. Conversely, where stakeholders are given no sense of ownership or empowerment we are seeing poor adoption rates, departmental stand-offs and resentment from lack of buy-in.
  1. Own the onboarding
Most successful procurement teams have KPI linked to the successful outcome of the project implementation, not the contract value. There has never been better reason for procurement to have a part of the onboarding process, involving multi-team training of all stakeholders and any third-party agencies that may have interactions with the SaaS. If this process is not driven powerfully internally, then the project will stall here, no matter how motivated the vendor is. Disenfranchised stakeholders, under-skilled users, and lack of internal project management will quickly derail any SaaS uptake into your business.
  1. RFP
Surprisingly, software RFP have not evolved well with the digital era. Often they are a technically focused generic checklist of features, as opposed to focusing on organisational objectives. Make sure your RFP is up to date, has had input from the various departments and stakeholders, and is aligned with the its overall needs. Here are some of the more important, but often omitted, questions from RFP:
  • Security and compliance
Many organisations have multiple procurement teams. Australian banks and some government departments, for example, often have a security procurement team who review the security aspects of the platform and contract. Procurement teams must be aware of the compliance regulations, specifically when it comes to sensitive information. Being an informed consumer is key to success here; things to consider when developing your checklist are:
  • Where is the data stored?
  • What level of data security standards have you reached?
  • What level of encryption do you hold your data to?
  • Support
How will the platform be supported? How will the team be supported? Where is the support service located? Is this inclusive to the contract value or at an additional cost? Support can be very difficult to measure, so it is an extremely variable cost unless it is inclusive.
  • Team location
The beauty of a SaaS is that you are not bound by the location of a team of people – until you want specialised support or a professional services team to implement your projects for you. If there is any possibility this will be the case with your organisation, then it is important you know where the team will be located, how responsive they can be, and if they have the resources to dedicate time to you during the implementation process. Not surprisingly, it is the big consultancies, insurance companies, banks, technology companies and leading associations that are doing these things best. However, with accessible technology there is plenty of opportunity for government agencies and organisations to join the best-practice leaders for SaaS procurement. In a world of increasing scrutiny around data security and compliance, efficiency, and the importance of emotional intelligence, there is exciting scope for procurement professionals to step into this void and powerfully impact the return on investment which a well planned and executed SaaS procurement affords. Alan Ivory is the vice president- global professional services for event management SaaS provider etouches. [post_title] => SaaS procurement in government [post_excerpt] => The procurement practices that lead to successful integration. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => saas-procurement-government [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-09-18 16:17:32 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-09-18 06:17:32 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=28068 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [7] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 28024 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-09-15 10:58:57 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-15 00:58:57 [post_content] => Lake Macquarie City Council is moving to a new consolidated tender to maintain its facilities, which will streamline and improve the process while promising to give service providers clearer guidelines and increased contract security. The council owns and manages about 400 buildings, facilities and natural assets, many of which are cleaned, maintained, and in some cases operated, by commercial contractors. The services provided include electrical and other trades, building maintenance, minor construction, data cabling, vegetation and pest management, waste management, cleaning and other specialist services. Under the new system, opportunities to provide these services will be advertised under a single tender, Facilities Management Services (T1009), comprising 52 separate services within eight Service Supply Panels. Providers will be able to register online through Tenderlink to submit a tender. “Council has a diverse range of contractors, and opportunities will continue to exist for suitably qualified and experienced service providers at all levels, from sole traders to large companies,” works coordinator Daron Kerr said. “Service providers will be able to tender for one, multiple or all services, and some services may be awarded to more than a single tenderer. “Lake Macquarie City Council is committed to supporting business across our City and region, and we encourage local businesses to consider participating in this tender process.” Successful tenderers will be awarded contracts of three years, with two one-year options. This will offer the council’s service providers greater security and assist with their business planning. The centralised tender will bring consistency to the council’s arrangements with contractors and improve safety, compliance and efficiency through the introduction of a performance management system. All services currently provided by commercial suppliers will be included within the new tender. Services provided by council staff will continue to be delivered within the organisation.   [post_title] => LMCC introduces consolidated tender [post_excerpt] => Lake Macquarie City Council is moving to a new consolidated tender to maintain its facilities. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => lmcc-introduces-consolidated-tender [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-09-15 11:33:03 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-09-15 01:33:03 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=28024 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [8] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 28003 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-09-11 14:47:14 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-11 04:47:14 [post_content] =>   Australia should start work immediately on a new way to ensure reliable electricity supplies, according to a new Grattan Institute report. Next Generation: the long-term future of the National Electricity Market calls for preparatory work on a ‘capacity mechanism’ to encourage investment in new electricity generation and reduce the threat of shortages and blackouts. The report warns, however, that the costs of such peace of mind would ultimately fall on consumers through higher electricity prices. So a capacity mechanism should be introduced only if all other market reforms have been exhausted and supply is still under threat. Through a capacity mechanism, generators would be paid not only for the electricity they produce to meet current demand, but for committing to provide power for years into the future. The market operator or retailers could contract for sufficient electricity to meet future demand, to ensure new generation and storage is built in time. “Australians have endured a decade of toxic political debates about climate change policy, South Australians suffered a state-wide blackout last year, consumers across the country are screaming about skyrocketing electricity bills, and energy companies are shutting down big coal-fired power stations,” said Grattan Institute Energy program director Tony Wood. “It is understandable that governments feel the need to ‘do something’. But the danger is they will rush in and make things worse. What Australia needs now is perspective, not panic.” The Australian Energy Market Operator (AEMO) last week called for a ‘longer-term approach’ to ensure electricity supplies. The Grattan report identifies a capacity obligation on retailers as the most effective and lowest-cost approach. The report calls for a three-step policy. First, the Federal Government should implement all recommendations of the June 2017 Finkel Review, including a Clean Energy Target or a similar mechanism to price greenhouse gas emissions. Second, alongside the Australian Energy Market Commission’s work on the market’s reliability framework, AEMO’s annual assessment of future supply and demand should be extended to include a more comprehensive assessment of the future adequacy of generation supply. And third, if the newly created Energy Security Board concludes that projected shortfalls are unlikely to be met under the current market design, AEMO should introduce a capacity mechanism. “This pragmatic, planned approach offers the best prospect of affordable, reliable, secure and sustainable power for Australians,” Mr Wood said. [post_title] => Grattan report calls for a capacity mechanism in electricity [post_excerpt] => How to make sure Australia has enough electricity in the future: Grattan Institute report. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => grattan-report-calls-capacity-mechanism-electricity [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-09-11 14:47:14 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-09-11 04:47:14 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=28003 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [9] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 27968 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-09-08 09:21:52 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-07 23:21:52 [post_content] => Helen Masters Unmanned aerial vehicles or drones have been a source of concern for local governments and regulatory authorities. While there are restrictions on the use of drones in public spaces for recreation, councils have a strong business case on the benefits of using drones to maintain and manage public amenities and physical assets. Drone technologies work with Enterprise Asset Management (EAM) software to deliver insights that go beyond basic maintenance and security activities. As local councils face tighter budgets, the biggest challenge is to have a hold of how facilities and assets that are spread over land, sea or in distant or awkward locations are performing. The synergy between drones and EAM helps improve the inspection process and allows councils to document asset conditions from public spaces such as parklands to building, facilities and infrastructure in an automated and more strategic manner. Brisbane City Council has demonstrated how drone images have been used to conduct inspections on council buildings, monitor wildlife populations in parks and to evaluate the potential for turf and event management. The use of drones will allow councils to assess if their public spaces will need pest or weed control in addition to regular maintenance work. Councils operating in regional or remote locations are often challenged with managing assets in places that may be difficult or dangerous to reach. At other times, these areas could be difficult to access such as the rooftop of building structures where machinery is situated. Instead of scaffolding and manually inspecting equipment on tall buildings, images from drones can provide technicians with valuable viewpoints and details about critical assets without having to physically attend to a site. Expanding the lifecycle of facilities and infrastructure requires monitoring performance and conducting preventative maintenance of each council asset. This is particularly important for critical infrastructure that cannot fall over such as security systems, drainage systems or public roads. With drones, the ability to deliver high-resolution imagery helps maintenance crews determine where to focus their attention and resources. Going beyond photographic images, drone technology can even supply infrared and x-ray images to detect structural issues or dangerous leaks in an environment that may be potentially unsafe for humans. These advancements ensure drones have an embedded role in facility management, fleet management and asset management by expanding the capabilities of field crews. Over time, physical inspections can be replaced with drones capturing historical images for real-time assessments. With the widespread adoption of rooftop solar photovoltaic systems in local council buildings, a drone with infrared thermal-imaging features can survey solar panels to identify damaged panels for maintenance. The use of drones alone only solves one part of the challenge faced by today’s asset managers. To achieve the most of this technology, data and imagery must be paired with a sophisticated asset management system that incorporates historical records, maintenance standards and other sensor information to assess conditions and determine maintenance requirements. This includes the identification of corrosion, detecting hairline cracks, spillages or leaks, to perform dilapidation assessments or land surveys. Data collected from each of these areas must be assessed and captured in real-time by a receiving asset management program. Asset managers would be able to cross-reference the condition of assets today in real time against the condition of assets from previous images or sensor readings. Through this process, they can determine the next course of action in the asset management lifecycle by comparing this data against manufacturing or industry standards. A comprehensive asset management strategy that includes drones for inspections provides a meaningful alternative strategy to traditional asset management. Such solutions have the ability to shift operations and maintenance processes from a reactive to proactive mode. Bringing drones, sensors and comprehensive asset management solutions together can help councils extend the useful life of their critical assets. As budgets and resources become increasingly scarce in local governments, drones could be the solution for councils looking to proactively manage their critical and valuable assets. Helen Masters is the vice president and managing director of Infor South Asia-Pacific and ASEAN. Footnote: US futurist Thomas Frey, speaking on the future of drones at the World of Drones Congress in Brisbane predicts there will be one billion drones worldwide by 2030 (in this he includes land- and water-based UAV as well).   [post_title] => Local councils and drones [post_excerpt] => Councils have a strong business case for using drones to maintain and manage public amenities and assets. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => getting-local-councils-board-drones [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-09-08 10:22:28 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-09-08 00:22:28 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=27968 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [10] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 27959 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-09-04 21:22:43 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-09-04 11:22:43 [post_content] =>   Joshua Healy, University of Melbourne and Daniel Nicholson, University of Melbourne Workers aren’t being compensated as much as they should be for precarious work in casual positions. One in four Australian employees today is a casual worker. Among younger workers (15-24 year olds) the numbers are higher still: more than half of them are casuals. These jobs come without some of the benefits of permanent employment, such as paid annual holiday leave and sick leave. In exchange for giving up these entitlements, casual workers are supposed to receive a higher hourly rate of pay – known as a casual 'loading'. But the costs of casual work are now outweighing the benefits in wages.

Costs and benefits of casual work

Casual jobs offer flexibility, but also come with costs. For workers, apart from missing out on paid leave, there are other compromises: less predictable working hours and earnings, and the prospect of dismissal without notice. Uncertainty about their future employment can hinder casual workers in other ways, such as making family arrangements, getting a mortgage, and juggling education with work. Not surprisingly, casual workers have lower expectations about keeping their current job. For example the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) found 19% expect to leave their job within 12 months, compared to 7% of other workers. Casuals are also much less likely to get work-related training, which limits their opportunities for skills development. The employers of casual workers also face higher costs. High staff turnover adds to recruitment costs. But perhaps the main cost is the “loading” that casual workers are supposed to be paid on top of their ordinary hourly wage. Australia’s system of minimum wage awards specifies a casual loading of 25%. So, a casual worker paid under an award should get 25% more for each hour than another worker doing the same job on a permanent basis. In enterprise agreements, the casual loading varies by sector, but tends to be between 15 and 25%. The practice of paying a casual loading developed for two reasons. One was to provide some compensation for workers missing out on paid leave. The other, quite different, motivation was to make casual employment more expensive and discourage excessive use of it. However this disincentive has not prevented the casual sector of the workforce from growing substantially.

Casual jobs aren’t much better paid

One approach in determining whether casual workers are paid more is simply to compare the hourly wages of casual and “non-casual” (permanent and fixed-term) employees in the same occupations. This can be done using data from the 2016 ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours. We compared median hourly wages for adult non-managerial employees, based on their ordinary earnings and hours of work (i.e. excluding overtime payments). If the median wage for casuals is higher than for non-casuals, there is a casual premium. If the median casual wage is lower, there is a penalty. The 10 occupations below accounted for over half of all adult casual workers in 2016. In most of these occupations, there is a modest casual wage premium - in the order of 4-5%. The size of the typical casual wage premium is much smaller, in most cases, than the loadings written into awards and agreements. Only one occupation (school teachers) has a premium (22%) in line with what might be expected. Three of the 10 largest casual occupations actually penalise this sort of work. And overall for these 10 occupations there is a casual wage penalty of 5%. This method of analysis suggests that few casual workers enjoy substantially higher wages as a trade-off for paid leave. Taking a closer look involves controlling for a wider range of differences between casual and non-casual workers. One major Australian study in 2005 compared wages after taking account of many factors other than occupation, including age, education, job location, and employer size. All else equal, it found that part-time, casual workers do receive an hourly wage premium over full-time, permanent workers. The premium is worth around 10%, on average, for men and between 4 and 7% for women. These results imply that most casual workers (who are in part-time positions) can expect to receive higher hourly wages than comparable employees in full-time, permanent positions. However, the value of the benefit is again found to be less than would be expected, given the larger casual loadings mentioned in awards and agreements. It seems that while there is some short-term financial benefit to being a casual worker, this advantage is worth less in practice than on paper. A recent study, using 14 years of data from the Household, Income and Labour Dynamics in Australia Survey (HILDA), finds no evidence of any long-term pay benefit for casual workers. The study’s authors estimate that, among men, there is an average casual wage penalty of 10% - the opposite of what we should see if casual loadings fully offset the foregone leave and insecurity of casual jobs. Among female casual workers, there is also a wage penalty, but this is smaller, at around 4%. This study also finds that the size of the negative casual wage effect tends to reduce over time for individual workers, bringing them closer to equality with permanent workers. But very few casual workers out-earn permanent workers in the long-term.

Inferior jobs, but fewer alternatives

The evidence on hourly wage differences leads us to conclude that casual workers are not being adequately compensated for the lack of paid leave, or for other forms of insecurity they face. This makes casual jobs a less appealing option for workers. This does not mean that all casual workers dislike their jobs – indeed, many are satisfied. But a clear-eyed look at what these jobs pay suggests their benefits are skewed in favour of employers. Despite this, the choice for many workers - especially young jobseekers - is increasingly between a casual job or no job at all. Half of employed 15-24 year olds are in casual jobs. The ConversationIn a labour market characterised by high underemployment and intensifying job competition, young people with little or no work experience are understandably willing to make some sacrifices to get a start in the workforce. The option of 'holding out' for a permanent job looks increasingly risky as these opportunities dwindle. Joshua Healy, Senior Research Fellow, Centre for Workplace Leadership, University of Melbourne and Daniel Nicholson, Research Assistant, Industrial Relations, University of Melbourne. This article was originally published on The Conversation. Read the original article. [post_title] => The costs of a casual job [post_excerpt] => The costs of a casual job are now outweighing any pay benefits. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => costs-casual-job [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-09-04 21:25:47 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-09-04 11:25:47 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=27959 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [11] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 27947 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-08-31 21:05:12 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-08-31 11:05:12 [post_content] => Flat electricity demand puts price rises squarely on network charges: The Audit. The Australia Institute has released the Electricity Update of the National Energy Emissions Audit (The Audit) for August 2017. The report, by energy analyst Dr Hugh Saddler, shows flat demand across the National Energy Market (NEM). “Total annual demand for electricity in the NEM is dead flat. With both national economic activity and population continuing to grow, electricity consumers are continuing to respond to ever rising prices by using electricity more efficiently, as they have been doing for most of the past seven years,” Dr Saddler said. “This year consumers have seen a very sharp rise in electricity price due to generation costs.  However, for the last six years price rises seen by consumers were almost entirely caused by network ‘gold-plating’. “This report shows that electricity consumers are continuing to pay for the policy failures of the last decade in the regulation of monopoly network businesses. “The reduction in brown coal production in the NEM is being met by increased black coal as well as increased renewable production – notably wind power, which bounced back to another all-time production record in July.”  “The retirement of decrepit brown coal plants in Victoria had the potential to limit supply and cause price rises, but South Australian wind has come to the rescue keeping the lights on and putting downward pressure on wholesale prices,” Dr Saddler said. The Audit In June 2017, The Australia Institute launched the National Energy Emissions Audit (The Audit), written by energy analyst and ANU Honorary Associate Professor Dr Hugh Saddler, which tracks Australia's emissions of greenhouse gases from the combustion of fossil fuels. The National Energy Emissions Audit will be published on a quarterly basis, in September, December, March and June each year. In each intermediate month the NEEA Electricity Update will report on changes to emissions from electricity generation in the National Electricity Market (NEM).     [post_title] => Electricity update [post_excerpt] => Flat electricity demand puts price rises squarely on network charges. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => electricity-update [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-08-31 21:05:12 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-08-31 11:05:12 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=27947 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [12] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 27929 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-08-29 09:33:09 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-08-28 23:33:09 [post_content] => Yvonne Keane Martin Place’s recent tent city has highlighted the plight of homeless people in search of finding stable and lasting accommodation. Sadly, the face of homelessness is changing, with more and more women finding themselves without a home. A large proportion of this growing and vulnerable demographic are domestic violence survivors and their children. According to the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, domestic violence makes women and children more susceptible to homelessness in two major ways: firstly, violence removes a sense of safety from the home; and secondly, escaping a violent situation requires the woman and her child/children to leave the family home. As a society we have been treating domestic violence and homelessness as two separate issues for too long now and I think it is time to ask ourselves the question: “Do our current established domestic violence and homelessness services really meet people’s current needs?” From my experience, the answer is ‘no’.  As the chairwoman of the board of a women's shelter in Sydney’s North-West, called The Sanctuary, I know that crisis shelters do meet a critical need for women and children who wish to escape unimaginable home lives. However, crisis accommodation – which is available for up to three months - only provides part of a solution in enabling the most vulnerable and at risk community members to live independent lives. And what of the many survivors who might never access a shelter? What about their struggle to find stable and long-lasting accommodation? And even if you are lucky enough to find safety and refuge at a shelter, you will still face the hard, painful next step in the process - finding housing that is safe, affordable and appropriate for you and your families. And so we find that survivors become caught up in an ongoing cycle of fleeing from and returning back to violence because of the lack of stable housing. It's what we call in the sector a 'barrier' that women face on the pathway to safety and independence.  For children, the trauma of frequent moves, topped off with unstable living environments continues the trauma of being exposed to situations of domestic violence. In my role as both mayor of The Hills Shire and chairwoman of The Sanctuary, I have many conversations with members of the community about domestic violence. I constantly hear the same question over and over again: “Why don’t women just leave?” Given the reality of housing affordability and the rising cost of living, this question pretty much answers itself. For some time now, I have been thinking of alternative solutions in which my council could play a role in delivering the resources required to help our community respond to women and children escaping unimaginable scenes of family violence. We have wonderful women’s shelters, and complementary wrap-around services, across the state and in The Hills, but the missing link is something called transitional housing. When I became mayor, I found myself in the perfect storm of opportunity. I came up with a way in which I thought that we might be able to help deliver vitally needed transitional housing to our community and along with key council staff, started to research how we could turn this idea into a policy. Transitional housing is different from affordable housing and from social housing. Transitional housing is the essential ‘next-step’ towards a life of real independence. It ultimately provides a safe, comfortable and secure place for society’s most vulnerable, to recover, re-build, thrive and make informed and empowered decisions about their lives. The aim of 'transitioning' is to help women to ultimately achieve wonderful and independent lives, not lives entirely dependent on social housing. And on Tuesday, 25 July 2017, The Hills Shire Council made history after my fellow councillors and I unanimously voted to implement the Transitional Housing Policy Framework.  Very simply, this framework will provide a supply of transitional housing in our community and do this at no cost to Council, rate payers or the government. Our innovative policy proposes a new provision in The Hills Local Environmental Plan 2012 which provides a capped bonus to encourage willing developers to provide transitional housing as part of new residential developments. The policy would allow a developer who meets the criteria, to build two additional dwellings for every transitional home provided. And we have capped the 'uplift' to a maximum of three transitional homes per development. While the numbers of transitional units would be relatively small in the overall scheme of things, the benefit it could provide for our most vulnerable could be enormous. The transitional homes would remain the property of the developer and would be managed by community housing providers or not-for-profit organisations, and would be returned to the developer after a set period of time. I am so enormously proud of this policy and I am even more proud that we will be the first council in the country to offer a new model for transitional housing and deliver it in such a way that there is no cost to the ratepayer. For me, this is a pinnacle achievement of my time as mayor and probably the most important thing I will ever do in my life. In NSW, the Minister for the Prevention of Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault, Pru Goward, has said that all ideas are on the table, and I hope to gain her support, and the support of NSW Cabinet to use this model to change the lives and futures of women and children across NSW as a starting point. It is my great hope that other councils will look at adopting my model – which delivers at no cost to them – as a way to genuinely solve the problems within their own communities. Even greater still, it is my hope that state and territory governments will look at this model and support its adoption as an effective solution across the country.  I have no doubt that this policy will change the lives and the futures of the most vulnerable in our community.  Investing in transitional housing for women leaving family and domestic violence makes sense. No one should ever have to choose between staying with an abusive partner or becoming homeless.  Councillor Yvonne Keane is the Mayor of The Hills Shire Council, Chair of the Board of the Sanctuary, sits on the NSW Women's Council for Economic Opportunity and is an elected Director of Local Government NSW. [post_title] => Why Transitional Housing? [post_excerpt] => Transitional Housing: the cooperative solution that could solve housing for the homeless. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => why-transitional-housing [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-08-29 10:34:36 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-08-29 00:34:36 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://governmentnews.com.au/?p=27929 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [13] => WP_Post Object ( [ID] => 27895 [post_author] => 670 [post_date] => 2017-08-24 20:15:53 [post_date_gmt] => 2017-08-24 10:15:53 [post_content] => The Commonwealth Government has announced significant reforms to the way businesses can sell IT services to the government. Starting immediately, government IT contracts will be capped at a maximum value of $100 million or three years’ duration. This is to allow small- and medium-sized businesses the opportunity to bid for smaller components of larger projects. Assistant Minister for Digital Transformation Angus Taylor said the Government was aiming to inject an additional $650 million annually into small Australian tech companies. “Government is targeting an increase of 10% of its annual $6.5 billion IT spending to smaller operators,” Assistant Minister Taylor said. “A cap is now in place to limit the term and value of government IT contracts. We are reducing the number of IT panels to make it easier for small players to supply services. We are actively encouraging small innovators to sell us their ideas.” The reforms were recommendations from the ICT Procurement Taskforce report. The taskforce found “a culture of risk-aversion in government procurement had undermined the freedom to innovate and experiment”. The ten recommendations from the taskforce cover issues such as developing ICT-specific procurement principles, building strategic partnerships, data-driven reporting, enhancing the Australian Public Service’s procurement skills, and new procurement methods. Work will continue over the next 12 months to deliver more pathways to improve coordination and reduce duplication of ICT procurement across government. The DTA’s increased oversight of the government’s IT investment portfolio and its work to build digital capability will address the calls for a more strategic IT procurement approach and a stronger technical workforce. The ICT procurement taskforce was established within the Department of the Prime Minister and Cabinet in October 2016 and became the responsibility of the Digital Transformation Agency in February 2017, the Minister said. Industry welcomes the move Rob Fitzpatrick, chief executive officer of the Australian Information Industry Association (AIIA) said the changes were an important step forward to make it easier and less expensive for smaller Australian ICT companies to bid for components of larger projects and have the opportunity to do business with the Government. “We welcome the government’s commitment to build improved procurement capabilities and introduce new ICT procurement options aimed to streamline and speed up processes for both government and vendors. “These changes are in line with recommendations made by AIIA to provide a more level playing field. “We are particularly pleased to hear the Minister’s strong commitment to cloud services across government and to reforming existing panel arrangements. “To succeed, it will be important to implement the spirit of these changes effectively, and industry looks forward to working with the government to ensure an effective rollout.” [post_title] => Federal Govt restructures IT procurement worth $6.5bn [post_excerpt] => The Commonwealth has made significant changes to the way businesses can sell IT services to the government. 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Americans are more scared of government and its corrupt officials than they are of anything else, including nuclear war or climate change. Three quarters (74. 5 percent) of people surveyed in the annual ‘Chapman University Survey on American Fears’ study said they were afraid of corrupt government officials. Second on the list, at 55 percent, was also a government issue – concern over ‘Trumpcare’, or what the unpredictable US President may do to the American Health Act. Rounding out the Top Ten were: pollution of oceans, rivers and lakes (53.1 percent), pollution of drinking water (50.4 percent), not having enough money for the future (50.2 percent), high medical bills (48.4 percent), that the US will be involved in another World War (48.4 percent), global warming and climate change (48.0 percent), North Korea using weapons (47.5 percent), and air pollution (44.9 percent). The results are very different from the 2016 survey. In that study corrupt government officials were also placed first, but were mentioned by only 60.6 percent of respondents. Americans are becoming much more anxious overall. Second last year was fear of a terrorist attack (41.0 percent). That grew this year to 43.3 percent, but in terms of position it declined sharply to 13th position. All of the top 15 fears this year rated higher than the second greatest fear last year. “The 2017 list of fears clearly reflects political unrest and uncertainty in the wake of Donald Trump’s election as president,” says the report. “Increased tensions with North Korea, concerns about sweeping changes proposed to health care and discussion (at the time the survey was administered) of the United States leaving the Paris Climate Accords produced a much different list from 2016. “What is most striking about American fear in 2017 is that environmental fears, including water pollution and drinking water quality, figure more prominently than ever before. Environmental issues never cracked the top ten fears in our previous surveys. “In 2017, there was a sharp increase in environmental fears, likely due to fears about policy changes in Washington. The Trump Administration has charted a drastically different path; ordering the US Environmental Protection Agency not to enforce major pollution laws, and firing the EPA’s entire Science Advisory Board. The survey was a random sample of 1,207 American adults. Chapman University is a private Christian institution in Orange County, California. The survey findings are available here. [post_title] => Americans scared of government - survey [post_excerpt] => Americans are more scared of government and its corrupt officials than they are of anything else, including nuclear war or climate change. [post_status] => publish [comment_status] => open [ping_status] => open [post_password] => [post_name] => americans-scared-government [to_ping] => [pinged] => [post_modified] => 2017-10-16 13:00:25 [post_modified_gmt] => 2017-10-16 02:00:25 [post_content_filtered] => [post_parent] => 0 [guid] => https://www.governmentnews.com.au/?p=28267 [menu_order] => 0 [post_type] => post [post_mime_type] => [comment_count] => 0 [filter] => raw ) [comment_count] => 0 [current_comment] => -1 [found_posts] => 281 [max_num_pages] => 21 [max_num_comment_pages] => 0 [is_single] => [is_preview] => [is_page] => [is_archive] => 1 [is_date] => [is_year] => [is_month] => [is_day] => [is_time] => [is_author] => [is_category] => [is_tag] => 1 [is_tax] => [is_search] => [is_feed] => [is_comment_feed] => [is_trackback] => [is_home] => [is_404] => [is_embed] => [is_paged] => [is_admin] => [is_attachment] => [is_singular] => [is_robots] => [is_posts_page] => [is_post_type_archive] => [query_vars_hash:WP_Query:private] => 8eee8baea1cb7890dfc787a4becffdff [query_vars_changed:WP_Query:private] => 1 [thumbnails_cached] => [stopwords:WP_Query:private] => [compat_fields:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => query_vars_hash [1] => query_vars_changed ) [compat_methods:WP_Query:private] => Array ( [0] => init_query_flags [1] => parse_tax_query ) )

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NAIF

$5 billion fund has done nothing

The Federal Government’s Northern Australia Infrastructure Facility (NAIF), announced with great fanfare 18 months ago, has yet to invest in single project. “This facility will provide financing to build the transport, energy, water and communications infrastructure needed in our north,” said Josh Frydenberg, the Minister for Industry Innovation and Science, when he announced the fund […]

nsw train

NSW transport ‘hiring freeze’

Millions of dollars will be stripped from the operating budgets of NSW’s government-owned transport agencies, Fairfax Media is reporting. Quoting ‘a briefing note to staff obtained by Fairfax Media’ from Transport for NSW secretary Tim Reardon, the department’s deputy secretaries have been told that operating budgets for all the state’s transport divisions have been cut […]