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Work programme outlined for LabPlus at DIA New Zealand to support integrated approach to service delivery across Government

The Service Innovation team at the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA) in New Zealand is moving ahead with work in supporting a more integrated approach to service delivery across the New Zealand Government.

The team conducted a three-month experiment, called Lab+, for testing a new model of government services based on the concept of Government as a Platform (GaaP). A value proposition discussion paper on GaaP was published earlier this month.

(In May, OpenGov spoke to Ms. Pia Waugh, who was leading Lab+ and reported on the ideas and objectives. After the project concluded in June, we got in touch with Ms. Waugh again to learn about the process and outcomes of the experiment.)

Now the team is moving into a longer-term work programme. The goals of the Service Integration Work Program (LabPlus) include providing design, development reference implementations of customer-facing all-of-government (AoG) digital transformation through tangible experimentation and iteration.

The programme will also focus on the discovery and prototyping of new reusable components to either fold back into agencies, AoG services or to close down initiatives that are not required. It will support the accelerated implementation of life event services through hands-on support, collaborative co-design and co-development with agencies and support the growth of an ecosystem of services built on government components.

The work programme has five basic parts:

  1. Service delivery for life events and proactive entitlements, working with agencies to develop user-centred effective services (digital but also supporting non-digital) through collaborative co-design, co-discovery, co-prototyping and co-development of new services. \
  2. Reusable components that support and facilitate faster and easier service delivery in government, with a focus on making reusable components openly available to support non-government (NGO) service providers to build on the back of government data, content, transactions services and business rules, all available programmatically (usually by Application Programming Interfaces or APIs). These reusable components will be designed and developed in the public eye and the team will reach out as much as possible to co-design with service delivery teams as well as NGO service providers.
  3. 3rd party reuse exemplars, where the team will identify and support on an ongoing basis, third parties (for profit and non-profit), that are naturally motivated to build on top of government components, like a human services register or programmable rules about service entitlement.
  4. An extended Service Innovation Toolkit that will deliver the guidance, reference examples, resource sharing, tool sharing and other support mechanisms to support government service delivery teams.
  5. Evidence and value realisation work to ensure that the service analytics evidence base informs and monitors the effectiveness of new digital services, while also tracking the value created from the work for people, government and the broader sector.

The measurement of benefits will be done by recording costs avoided by teams, agencies or AoG when engaged in distinct pieces of work or as a result of reusable components developed and measuring benefits/value for users and industry, on a per initiatives basis.

Other areas of impact which would be considered are efficiencies realised by service delivery teams participating in LabPlus; systemic measure of changes to the system; and economic or social Improvements for the community (users, industry, etc). The blog post mentions that the actual reuse of APIs, code and content by government and non-government entities could also be measured. 

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