The value of consulting and delivery giant Accenture’s active contracts with the federal government grew by 30 per cent last financial year to $480 million, a $110 million increase over the previous reporting period.
Accenture’s percentage increase in income from the federal government between financial year 2021-22 and 2020-21 was 10 percentage points greater than the previous period.
The company’s revenues have grown by 56 per cent since the 2019-20 financial year that covered the start of the Covid-19 pandemic. Overall, the Irish-headquartered Accenture has been paid more than $1.1 billion in the last three financial years, according to an analysis of Austender data by data by InnovationAus.com.
The figures represent the actual dollar amount paid to Accenture during the financial year, rather than the value of the contracts awarded during the year.
Accenture had 132 active contracts last year. Of the 24 government agencies and departments Accenture worked with, the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) paid Accenture the most. The second and third largest federal clients for Accenture were Defence and Health.
Across 20 active contracts, the ATO paid Accenture about $208 million last year. This is almost 43 per cent of Accenture’s income from federal government work and due in part to the company’s $47 million worth of work on the Modernising Business Registers program, which aims to streamline the storage of business information.
The largest cost of a single contract of any government agency was also with the ATO for work on a digital identity project. This earned Accenture $35 million last financial year. A further $88 million was spent by the ATO for the provision of unspecified IT, ICT, and IT vendor arrangement services, according to AusTender.
The Department of Defence had 31 active contracts last financial year, the most of any government department or agency. It paid out around $133 million or 27.4 per cent of Accenture’s income from federal government work. The largest contract pay out from Defence was just under $28 million for project management support services, as described on AusTenders.
Accenture has also been responsible for developing and maintaining a Covid-19 vaccine data solution for the Department of Health, with work on the project costing more than $20 million last year. Overall, work from Accenture cost the department around $40 million.
Ahead of the 2022 federal election, the Labor party committed to lower government spending on contractors and consultants by $3 billion and scrap a cap on the number of jobs it can have in the public sector.
As one of its first reforms, the Albanese government amended the Commonwealth Procurement Rules to ensure small and medium sized businesses benefitted from a larger proportion of the federal government’s annual spend. It also introduced the requirement for federal government buyers to approach multiple suppliers on a standing offer arrangement to encourage genuine competition in the panel arrangements.
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