Shared services for corporate services across the APS is a long-term priority for the Australian Government. Shared service models help governments and organisations drive productivity increases by reducing system duplication, enabling improved data collation and providing consistent customer experiences.
Typically, the move to shared services takes a number of years. It requires considered co-design with agencies, sound development and ongoing engagement to support the embedding of shared services in each agency.
In the 2019-20 Financial Year, the Government created the Shared Services Transformation Initiative, a progression from the former Shared Services Program, which started in 2016. In establishing the Initiative, the Shared Services Group in Finance worked to further continue the work on APS shared services in consultation with agencies across the APS.
There has been continual progress on the APS move to shared services. Six provider hubs have been established that now deliver services to more than 20 agencies. The two Aurion technology hubs have been consolidated into a single entity in the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources to provide more efficient delivery of services.
The Department of Finance has transitioned to a shared services arrangement with the Service Delivery Office (SDO), and the SDO now provides Finance with shared services such as accounts payable, accounts receivable, pay and conditions, payroll administration and payroll management.
In 2020, we are working to build relationships, share knowledge and work towards the development of a robust shared-services model for the APS.
With Australia facing the devastating impacts and disruption of bushfires and COVID-19, the team adapted to focus on supporting the Government’s response to COVID and took the opportunity use the lessons from COVID (including Public Service mobility and remote work) to continue to refine the focus of GovERP.
While our work through COVID has provided challenges and understandably, delays; it has also allowed us to take the time needed to lay sound foundations for the preparation and planning phase for GovERP.
With the firm set up of consultation that has begun in 2019-20, the GovERP team (and the Government) has set a good path to ensure GovERP is developed to be a user-friendly platform for SAP hubs that addresses whole-of-government business needs. We know that consultation and co-design is a key pillar of shared service success.
This Financial Year will focus on working together across the APS through cross-government committees, secondments and other whole-of-government engagement activities.