Looking ahead to 2019–20, a key priority will be supporting the Government to deliver its fiscal and policy objectives consistent with the Charter of Budget Honesty Act 1998. This includes delivering the 2018–19 FBO and Consolidated Financial Statements (CFS), the 2019–20 MYEFO, the 2020–21 Budget, the Government’s regular financial statements and managing sustainable public sector resourcing.
Finance will continue to support the GBEs, including developing major infrastructure projects such as the Western Sydney Airport, the National Broadband Network, the Moorebank Intermodal Terminal, Snowy Hydro, naval shipbuilding infrastructure and Inland Rail.
The Department is developing a digital solution to enhance GBE shareholder reporting. This will streamline how the Department captures, analyses and presents GBE corporate and project financial and performance data, including historical trend analysis and future projections. Finance delivered a proof of concept in mid 2019 for phased delivery commencing in 2019–20.
Finance will continue to identify business processes for automation and will deliver the first tranche of 19 business process automations initiated last year. Additionally, PACE will continue to partner across government to build and embed process automation capability.
On 1 July 2019, Finance onboarded to SDO, which means we now benefit from being both a provider and a consumer of shared services. Importantly, by adding our staff to its footprint, we support the SDO to operate at scale and reduce costs to all client entities.
In addition to enhanced services to parliamentarians and their employees, including easier access to online information and new training modules, the final release of PEMS is scheduled for delivery in mid-2020. This will integrate office and travel expense claims with the financial management information system, including budget management, reporting and self-service functions such as viewing payslips, applying for leave and changing personal profiles.
Through the Modernisation Fund, Finance is leading work to standardise business processes by developing an implementation plan for a common ERP platform across government. This will provide APS staff with common technology and standardised processes using the best digital technology regardless of the agency for which they work.
To meet emerging needs, the Department will build further capability in areas such as data analytics, commercial investment and management, financial modelling and business analysis, strengthening our ability to advise in an informed, strategic and connected manner.
Finance’s Information and Data Governance Framework sets out our commitment to achieving best practice in how to create, save and access information and data. Under the Framework, the Department will implement the Managed Information Environment (MIE)—a single repository for documents that consolidates corporate records into a ‘one-stop shop’. This work will contribute to a longer term data strategy for the Department. In addition to the GBAU, as part of the Data Integration Partnership for Australia, the Finance Budget Analytics and Visualisation Team will drive productivity by supporting data sharing across the APS.
Finance is committed to driving change and improvement, which is underpinned by the Department’s 2019–20 Transformation Plan. In the year ahead, Finance will continue to enable transformation with initiatives across our four areas of focus: people, stewardship, making business better and integrated business planning.
Transformation requires a culture where all staff participate to their full potential. To achieve this, the Department is implementing its own People Capability Framework to drive performance and build talent using clear and consistent performance expectations for all levels.
In all of our endeavours, Finance will operate with integrity and accountability to embrace data and digital technology, collaborate effectively and be innovative.
As a central agency, we have a significant opportunity to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the APS in delivering better frontline services to the Australian community.