A transformative mission
Government services should be easy to use, accessible, transparent, connected, adaptable, and user centric. With these objectives in mind, and in a rapidly changing ICT space, the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) has been driving the Australian government’s Digital Transformation Strategy to improve government services for users.
A key responsibility of the DTA is supporting government ICT procurement, which involves billions of dollars of public money each year. Inefficient, manual ICT procurement processes were a prime candidate for digital transformation.
Award-winning BuyICT, built on ServiceNow Customer Service Management, has brought government ICT procurement into the digital age and revolutionized the entire process.
Moving ICT procurement workflows onto ServiceNow has delivered multiple positive outcomes. A seamless digital process means productivity and efficiency have improved, while also enhancing transparency and compliance with records management and audit regulations. Small to medium enterprise (SME) participation has grown, innovation has been boosted, and the customer support team can now deliver faster support to users. It has also encouraged cross-government collaboration and the reuse of digital assets.
“The government procurement space is complex. ServiceNow helps us build a platform that is simple, fair, and fast to manage buying and selling, and also comply with rules and legislation,” says Anthony Conway, Product Manager and Director, Digital Sourcing Platforms at the Digital Transformation Agency.
A seamless experience for ICT buyers and sellers
Historically, government digital procurement has been a manual process, with panel requests for quotes published via email. Quotes were then submitted via email, and in some cases physically to locked tender boxes. Contracts often required handwritten signatures, and physical records had to be stored on site for seven years.
These manual processes and a cumbersome, time-consuming email administration process meant response times were slow. Necessary data to enable informed decisions was often lacking, and there was a constant risk that sellers’ questions or buyers’ responses could be missed.
Now, using ServiceNow Customer Service Management and custom workflows, buyers and sellers can manage requests and quotes directly through BuyICT. Sellers can also update their profiles through the portal to ensure that buyers always have accurate information about their company.
A contract workflow built into the platform enables users to fine-tune details such as individual terms and conditions before exporting contracts as PDF files for signature. Newly developed dashboards enable both sellers and buyers to manage requests, quotes, and contracts, while catalogs allow buyers to select the right sellers for their specific needs.
A whole-of-government service
After deploying ServiceNow Customer Service Management, the DTA is already transforming the speed and standardization of the procurement process. In just one year, the DTA facilitated 2,100 Hardware Marketplace, 801 Software Marketplace, 132 Telecommunications Marketplace, and 98 Cloud Marketplace requests for quotes –an average of 12.5 requests for a quote per day through ServiceNow.
“Sellers can now submit quotes in minutes without guidance or instruction. We are seeing the same phenomenon with buyers, who are now receiving responses to complex quote requests within a day or two. That could have taken weeks in the past,” Anthony explains.
“No one else in the market offers a whole-of-government service that facilitates both back-of-house operations and user-focused procurement workflows. With ServiceNow Customer Service Management, we have been able to build a platform that delivers a consistent experience and makes it as simple and fast as possible for buyers and sellers.”
Clear and fast automation has made procurement simpler. BuyICT’s centralized procurement pathway consolidates government spending and minimizes inefficiencies. Transacting through BuyICT has become more and more attractive to buyers and sellers.
“The numbers speak for themselves,” Anthony adds. “We have facilitated 5,000 transactions in the last financial year alone. The dollar spend through these marketplaces is quite extraordinary. We have seen an 82% increase in contract value, from AUD700 million to almost AUD3.9 billion in 2021. Before ServiceNow, these volumes would have been quite challenging to manage.”