GOV.AU passes Alpha assessment

The GOV.AU prototype passed its alpha stage assessment. Jacqui van Teulingen head of Digital Service Standard team explains the assessment process.

Yesterday we were notified by the international assessment panel that the GOV.AU prototype has passed its Alpha stage assessment against the relevant criteria in the Digital Service Standard.

The panel reported “the GOV.AU team demonstrated a deep understanding of user needs, established a broad multi-disciplinary team and developed an Alpha prototype based on the Digital Transformation Office’s (DTO) service design and delivery process.”

This feedback confirms GOV.AU is on its way to delivering a service that will make it quicker and easier for Australians to find what they need.

This is also a milestone for the DTO, with the GOV.AU team being the first in the organisation to be assessed against the Digital Service Standard.

Importantly, this is just the beginning of the journey, and the Alpha assessment report provides valuable feedback and recommendations on things we need to consider as we move into the Beta stage.

Assessment process

Under the Digital Service Standard, new and re-designed services are assessed at the end of Alpha and Beta stages, and before going Live. These assessments provide service teams with objective review and expert advice at key product development points.

A service must pass the first 3 criteria of the Standard in an Alpha assessment, and demonstrate significant progress against most of the other criteria. The assessment report provides feedback on all but 2 of the criteria, which are not applicable at this stage.

Because of the wide scope of the GOV.AU task, we didn’t want to “check our own homework”. Therefore, to ensure independence, we sought assistance from experienced government digital specialists in the UK Government’s Digital by Default Service Standard team. These specialists formed the assessment panel along with an Australian assessor.

GOV.AU was assessed against the Australian Digital Service Standard, which is different to the UK standard, although based on similar principles.

Now that we’ve been given the green light to progress to Beta, our team will be taking on the expert recommendations to improve and refine GOV.AU as it moves into the next stage of its development.

Caption: The panel conducts the assessment from the UK with the GOV.AU team in Sydney over Google Hangouts

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