The New South Wales government in 2013 launched Service NSW, an agency that brought together a number of different NSW services under the one office — including Roads and Maritime Services; Births, Deaths and Marriages; and small business support — with the remit to be the one-stop-shop for state government interactions.
With a mandate from government to bring 80 percent of transactions through a digital channel, Service NSW's journey started with a goal to improve customer service and disrupt the way citizens interacted with government.
SEE: Cost comparison calculator: G Suite vs. Office 365 (Tech Pro Research)
At 130 Service NSW locations across the state, citizens can use self-service kiosks for 1,200 types of transactions, such as obtaining driver's licences and ordering birth certificates.
The kiosks in 2015 were switched to Chrome OS — a move CTO Colin Jones and former CIO Ben McMullen said was welcomed due to the ability to remotely repair, rather than decommission kiosks for days.
"Once we purchased 800 Chromebase all-in-one desktop computers, we immediately found Chrome Enterprise reduced our costs, streamlined IT management, and increased security," the C-level duo wrote in a blog post .
"Over a six-month period in 2015, we estimated that Chromebases required only 5 percent of the support hours we were spending on the Microsoft devices previously in use."
Service NSW has the goal of performing 70 percent of all transactions digitally by 2019, and according to Jones and McMullen, as the agency moved resources to the cloud, it found it no longer needed private WAN networks for each service location, only broadband and Wi-Fi.
"Eliminating private networks is an enormous savings by itself. When you add in the savings on devices and IT management, we're targeting reducing our operational costs by 46 percent per year," they wrote.
Pleased with the Google kit at its service centres, Service NSW began replacing legacy desktops and software at head office locations with Chromebooks and G Suite. It recently purchased 1,200 additional Chrome OS devices to replace the remaining Windows desktops at all of its service locations.
"We're actively rolling out Chromebooks and G Suite to all of our staff in the next 12 months," the pair said. "We began replacing legacy desktops and software at our head office locations with Chromebooks and G Suite. We're actively rolling out Chromebooks and G Suite to all of our staff in the next 12 months."
In its 2018-19 Budget documents, the state government said Service NSW's service centres have a customer satisfaction rate of 97 percent, and average waiting time of seven minutes.
The big takeaways for tech leaders:
- Service NSW is replacing legacy Microsoft desktops and software at its head office locations with Chromebooks and G Suite
- The switch is helping Service NSW meet its goal of performing 70 percent of all transactions digitally by 2019
- Comparison chart: Enterprise collaboration tools (Tech Pro Research)
- Service NSW wants to share technology for cross-border service delivery (ZDNet)
- Chromebooks: A cheat sheet (TechRepublic)
- Service NSW to develop multi-factor authentication identity platform as opt-in (ZDNet)
- Comparing office suites: What features are vital to your workflow? (TechRepublic)
With a degree in Communications, and a background in technical writing, Asha has left the engineering world and joined the ZDNet team in Sydney as a journalist.