Victorian govt hunts for top tech executive

Denham Sadler
National Affairs Editor

The Victorian government is looking to fill the top executive role at its newly established digital service delivery agency, with Digital Victoria to be up and running by July.

Applications are now open for the chief executive officer position at Digital Victoria, the newly-created entity responsible for the state’s digital and ICT strategy.

Digital Victoria was unveiled through last year’s November state budget with nearly $200 million in funding. The new agency will centralise and simplify the Victorian government’s digital services and follows in the footsteps of Service NSW and Services Australia at the federal level.

The new agency sits within the Victorian Department of Premier and Cabinet.

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Government Services minister Danny Pearson posted the job listing on LinkedIn, saying the chief executive is to be responsible for leading the planning and delivery of priority whole-of-government digital and tech reforms and initiatives.

They will provide executive leadership, management and strategic direction and drive the delivery of digital reform across the state government, Mr Pearson said.

The new Digital Victoria CEO will receive a salary of up to $480,000 annually, and will hold a senior leadership position in the Department of Premier and Cabinet. Applications for the position close at the end of this week.

The May state budget included a further $180 million in funding for digital service delivery, with $70 million for Service Victoria to bring more service online, such as grant applications and business licencing approvals.

Another $25 million will be provided in the next two financial years each on improving customer experience with digital government services.

Following a scathing review of efforts to establish a new digital platform for Victoria’s fines system, the Auditor-General called for the establishment of an “information technology projects centre of excellence”, which would be a centralised, dedicated team of tech experts to build capability across government and agencies.

Digital Victoria will fulfill this role, the state government said in its response, with the new agency to coordinate the digital transformation agenda.

Mr Pearson was also appointed in the role of overseeing the government’s digital services as part of last year’s budget announcement.

“This pandemic has asked us to rely on technology more than ever, requiring the Victorian government’s online systems to adapt – fast,” the Victorian government said in last year’s budget.

“Digital technology has been pivotal in keeping us connected during the pandemic, but whether it’s going online to update your licence or sitting down for an important conference with colleagues, the safety and reliability of this technology is crucial.”

Of the funding provided in that budget for Digital Victoria, $30.5 million was allocated for the current financial year, $27.2 million for 2021-22, $33.9 million for the following year and $64.5 million for 2023-24.

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