ICT prompts government reshuffle

Top level reorganisation at the Department of Internal Affairs

A major top-level reorganisation at the Department of Internal Affairs is based largely on the government’s plans for the use of ICT.

Chief executive and soon-to-be government CIO Brendan Boyle released the details last week. They include the appointment of six deputy chief executives.

He refers to ICT as a driver. “What we are experiencing now is a revolution in the ability of the public service to meet the needs of the people, and to do so better, faster and at all times of the day and night.

“ICT, it is rightly said, is just an enabler, only a tool. The point that is missed is that the present development of networking power makes the enabler into a driver. It also makes it more likely that government will look for structural reorganisation to position the public service to make the best use of ICT enablers and drivers.

“Government has put money behind this: a $1.5 billion investment in ultra high-speed broadband. I am excited by the prospect of using our combined expertise to use this big pipe, by filling it with a stream of services and information to improve people’s dealings with government and their access to content and information.”

He foreshadows more change at DIA after the initial integration. “I am expecting this cascade of change processes will take place from now until July 2011.

“I am not filling the roles of deputy chief executives to simply administer the department. I am expecting them to bring further change so that we can be more productive, be able to develop new services and better serve government and the people.”

The reorganisation coincides with DIA taking responsibility for the National Library and Archives New Zealand.

Boyle says he is committed to supporting the two in the exact terms of the legislation on which they each rely.

“We are being brought together because we are strong departments that will do even better together.

He expects savings of $4.5 million over the next three years on the back of the changes.

The deputy chief executive position – advertised last week – that appears pivotal to the changes is that of Knowledge, Information, Research and Technology. It embraces Archives NZ, National Library, Government Technology Services, Government Information Services, the government CIO office and ICT supply and procurement.

The other five are:

• Policy, Regulatory and Ethnic Affairs

• Service Delivery and Operations

• Ministry of Civil Defence and Emergency Management

• Shared Services

• Strategy and Governance.

The current position of general manager Government Technology Services (GTS) – held by Stephen Crombie – will be abolished.

GTS, which now comes under Knowledge, Information, Research and Technology, will encompass services assurance, services planning, service desk and delivery, services management, security, architecture, infrastructure, professional services and programme delivery.

The organisational chart shows there will be an ICT supply and procurement general manager.

Falling under the purview of a government information services general manager will be information standards and advisory, web information service delivery, DIA information management, along with translations and authentications.

DIA received 187 submissions, including individual and group submissions. Boyle says he spent nine months completing the organisational changes.

“There was strong support for bringing a knowledge and information cluster of functions together, and for bringing policy functions together,” he says.

Boyle says he expects the six deputy chief executive roles will be filled by late January or early February.

The organisational changes will be made under the existing budget, he says.

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Tags Department of Internal AffairsBrendan Boyle

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