Government’s digital procurement platform hits $2 billion milestone — with SMEs taking home 75%

unfair contract terms

Assistant Treasurer Stuart Robert. Source: AAP Image/Mick Tsikas.

More than $2.3 billion in digital and information and communications technology (ICT) services contracts have been awarded through the Digital Transformation Agency’s online procurement platform.

The Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) has reported the figures just six months after the platform hit the $1 billion milestone, and at a time when Australian governments have an increased focus on supporting the digital economy, helping local businesses, and strengthening cyber capabilities.

Government Services Minister Stuart Robert on Thursday celebrated the figure on LinkedIn, noting that more than $1.5 billion has been awarded to small and medium-sized enterprises.

“Now, more than ever we need to support Australian business,” he wrote.

The site currently hosts 2,764 sellers — 90% of which are SMEs — and 2,600 buyers from all government jurisdictions.

The top buyer for July was the National Disability Insurance Agency, which posted 18 opportunities, followed by the Defence and Education departments (15 each), according to new statistics.

The seller which has been awarded the most contracts this financial year is recruitment company Hays, followed by Talent International, and technology and digital talent SME Paxus Australia.

Since the marketplace launched in August 2016, more than 4,300 opportunities have been published on the site, with 65% of the dollar value contracted through the platform awarded to SMEs.

The DTA noted the site has made it easier for SMEs to do business with government by removing barriers.

“It is now simpler for SMEs and startups to gain access to and win government digital contracts. The digital marketplace offers a quick and simple process to join and sell to government buyers,” it said.

“This process is fit for purpose, especially for early-stage startups and scale-ups at state and federal level.”

The agency argued that hitting the $2 billion mark has demonstrated that the buyer and seller experience is continuing to transform. Further improvements are planned for the marketplace to keep up with the changing environment, and to meet industry and government needs and expectations.

“We have simplified and consolidated panel arrangements in line with the digital sourcing framework for ICT procurement. This has improved the sourcing experience for both buyers and sellers,” the DTA said.

“We operate marketplaces providing digital products and services to buyers of digital services, software, hardware, telecommunications, and cloud services.”

This article was first published by The Mandarin.

NOW READ: SMEs and startups the focus for new digital procurement taskforce in NSW

NOW READ: Ombudsman calls for a small business procurement panel to assist in Australia’s economic recovery

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