Enterprise technology providers on the government’s Digital Marketplace will now have an easier time vying for contracts with NSW agencies and departments, after the state’s government signed up to collaborate with the platform.
The Digital Marketplace is an initiative created by the federal government’s Digital Transformation Office as part of Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s National Innovation and Science Agenda, launched in December 2015.
It is intended to make it easier for small businesses to compete in government IT contracts, which are valued at an estimated $5 billion per year, according to the NSW Department of Finance, Services, and Innovation.
The initial focus of the marketplace is on providing access to digital business requirements of government entities.
The NSW government has announced it will become the first state to collaborate with the Digital Marketplace, which was launched in beta late last month. The use of the Digital Marketplace is fully compliant with the NSW government’s procurement policies.
Under the arrangement, NSW government agencies will use the marketplace to identify digital specialists for a range of technology services, including web performance analysis, user experience design, and digital transformation advisory services.
The move is expected to make it easier for service providers and, particularly smaller IT businesses, to vie for NSW government IT contracts. For NSW government department of finance, services, and innovation, Martin Hoffman, the move makes sense, given the size profile of many of the state’s businesses.
“NSW is home to more than 60 per cent of all start-ups in the country,” he said. “It is entirely appropriate that we be the first state in the country to embrace the Digital Marketplace.”
According to the head of Digital Marketplace, Catherine Thompson, the platform will provide a user-friendly environment for digital technology procurement, giving providers in NSW and further afield the opportunity to provide specialist digital services to the government.
“In particular, this exciting initiative will benefit small businesses and start-ups, and allow them to compete for government contracts alongside larger, more established companies,” Thompson said.
The move by the NSW government to collaborate with the Digital Marketplace comes just weeks after the Australian assistant minister for cities and digital transformation, Angus Taylor, called on small to medium-sized enterprises and startups to ‘get on board’ with the Digital Marketplace platform.
“This is an important change in the way [the] government has traditionally done business,” Taylor said when the platform was launched in beta. “It’s a new platform for business and government to work together in a creative and flexible way.”