The digital wheel is well and truly rolling, and governments along with businesses are playing a critical role in taking this digital value to the masses. For instance, the Australian government published its Digital Economy Strategy, which lays down various plans to make the country’s economy more digitally sound by 2030. In that pursuit, the government has lined up a strategic investment of $1.2 billion in the 2021-22 budget. This investment is aimed at building a strong foundation for the digital economy, upskilling the workforce to develop capabilities in emerging technologies, and setting digital growth priorities.
E-governance: Building a sustainable and inclusive ecosystem
While digital transformation has been a key consideration for governments and businesses, the disruptive nature of COVID-19 has acted as an accelerator to this transformation. By causing a global impact, the pandemic left supply chains worldwide in a precarious state and rendered conventional operating models vastly useless. This created the need for a future-ready, disruption-proof social and business paradigm. While no sustainable change can happen overnight, it is abundantly clear that innovation-led digitization is the key driver of this evolution.
The growing involvement of governments and global businesses is underlining the importance of the digital transformation agenda and marking the intent for a more equitable future. According to a recent study, the global e-governance market is projected to be worth $45.76 billion by 2026, up from $20.82 billion in 2019. That reflects a healthy CAGR of 12% in the forecast period and the ANZ region is one of the chief contributors to this remarkable growth amongst other digitally mature regions such as the Americas and Europe. The key areas that Australia is seeing considerable growth in ICT investments are artificial intelligence, machine learning, IoT, cloud computing, cybersecurity, connectivity and collaboration, and intelligent ERP.
Digital economy: Driving the Australian imperative
Studies show that Australia had coped with the pandemic-induced disruptions well. The government’s willingness in pushing the digital agenda has made more than 80% of Australian enterprises embark on their digital transformation journeys more vigorously. However, there are some glaring challenges on the path of successful digital transformation, especially for corporations in Australia. The study notes that while the number of enterprises opting for organizational and operational transformation is high, they can face the conundrum of biting off more than they can chew.
In other words, digital transformation initiatives often fail to generate the expected results when the objective alignment and strategies are flawed. It is, therefore, important for enterprises to have clarity on their transformation goals, leverage astute leadership, and possess a transformation specialization. Then, they can drive agile governance, effective monitoring, an outcome-oriented modular technology platform, and the transition process itself.
Over the past decade, Australia has successfully built a digital foundation with new-age IT infrastructure and processes. In fact, most government operations and citizen liaison methodologies have been digitized, bringing the government and the people closer. Now, that foundation must be grown upon to build a fully functional digital economy. In that quest, some of the key priorities for the government are:
- Making robust policies and regulatory reforms to strengthen the legislative framework
- Developing new-age government services to meet citizen expectations
- Engaging digitally, automating facilities, and personalizing services to enhance citizen experiences
- Optimizing the return on public investment and securing citizens data
- Building smart infrastructures to maximize social and business opportunities
- Upskilling the workforce and reimaging capabilities in alignment with emerging technologies
To optimize e-governance and build a sustainable digital economy, the government’s vision and larger awareness amongst the citizens will truly play a crucial role. That done, the local industry will be strengthened, and technology will be optimized to shape the lives of the citizens.
Partnering with technological expertise
In the pursuit of a digital economy, governments and corporations must consider collaborating with technology partners who come with specific expertise that can expedite digital transformation and emphasize seamless transition. HCLTech comes with a host of capabilities around digital transformation. Our unique expertise in digital consulting, AI/ML and cloud enablement, and DevSecOps have helped enterprises transition their operations quickly and easily.
While Australia and New Zealand have shown a remarkable promptness in encouraging digital transformation across sectors, one of the glaring challenges that the country is facing is the shortage of a technology talent pool. The infrastructure, awareness, and adoption are growing, but the depth of the workforce to drive the transformation is still low. To build a home-grown workforce versed well with the technological needs of the future, HCLTech’ has introduced the TechBee program in both Australia and New Zealand, with the vision of identifying the right talent and training them for the digital economy.
As a part of this fully sponsored program, students with an interest in IT, at completion of their secondary school studies will be trained in cloud and hypervisors, SAP S4/HANA, cybersecurity operations, analytics and IoT, business process management, and digital workplace, among other key technology areas. The TechBee program is focused on developing a localized workforce at scale that contributes to building sovereign capability and capacity; strengthening the economy and better enabling a thoroughly inclusive and productive society. I personally feel initiatives such as these, will help provide better market solutions to help close existing and increasing skill gaps.
HCLTech is also contributing to improving citizen services in Australia and New Zealand through delivery of solutions and end-to-end services that transform, enable, empower, and improve the citizen experience, and encourage increased consumption of these services. We have also helped the Australian government build and upgrade smart infrastructures across the Reserve Bank of Australia, Transport NSW Sydney Trains, and Water NSW.
In the long run, we believe that with our extensive range of technology products and services, comprehensive partner ecosystem and innovation-centricity, we will play an increasingly important role in enabling the ANZ region to reach greater heights in the digital paradigm and transformation to come.