Information and communications technology (ICT) is integral to how governments manage information and deliver programs and services. Comprehensive reporting of ICT expenditure and projects is important to improve transparency and provide assurance that public sector agencies have used public resources in an efficient, effective and economic way.
In our 2015 report Digital Dashboard: Status Review of ICT Projects and Initiatives, we found that public sector agencies’ financial and management processes did not enable the comprehensive reporting of actual ICT expenditure across the public sector. As a result, we recommended that the Department of Premier and Cabinet (DPC) publicly report on ICT projects across the public sector.
In March 2016, DPC launched the Victorian Government ICT Dashboard for public sector ICT projects valued at more than $1 million. The ICT Dashboard shows key metrics such as cost, expected completion time frame and implementation status.
In this audit, we examined whether transparency in government ICT investments has improved since the development of the ICT Dashboard. We examined DPC’s role as the dashboard owner, and undertook a detailed review of selected projects in the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS), Melbourne Water and Public Transport Victoria (PTV). We also examined the Department of Treasury and Finance’s (DTF) role in cross-checking with High Value High Risk reporting, as well as overseeing the process for agencies to make financial disclosures about ICT expenditure.
We made six recommendations. We directed four recommendations to DPC, one recommendation to DTF, and one recommendation to DHHS, DPC, Melbourne Water and PTV.