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CPSU says outsourcing is resulting in a ‘substandard’ APS IT capability


The Community and Public Sector Union (CPSU) believes that decades of IT “under investment” and outsourcing has resulted in substandard IT capability at one government agency, while shared services arrangements at two others have caused ripple effects on staff as well as customers.

Making six submissions to the Finance and Public Administration References Committee and its inquiry into the current capability of the Australian Public Service (APS), the CPSU singled out Services Australia, the National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA), and the Department of Veterans Affairs (DVA).

According to the union, Services Australia “engaged” 2,277 APS employees within its Technology Services branch, which represents approximately 7.3% of Services Australia’s APS workforce, including one IT apprentice and 11 IT cadets, as of October 2020.

It said [PDF] 50% of 700-800 IT staff are contractors in the Brisbane delivery centre, 50% of 1,300 IT staff are contractors in the Canberra delivery centre, and 45% of 700 IT staff are contractors in the Adelaide delivery centre.

Additionally, most IT project managers are contractors in the delivery centres and “scrum masters” are mostly contractors, with CPSU noting there are some teams that are almost 100% contractors.

CPSU said its IT staff members report that outsourcing IT results in limited […]

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