Building Digital Capability for the Public Sector

Equinix Australia Pty Ltd
Thursday, 02 September, 2021



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Recent natural disasters and health crises in Australia and worldwide have brought the need for interconnection more sharply into focus, with residents seeking government services and information online. Many Australians have already benefited from the Commonwealth’s strong Vision 2025 digital transformation and Secure Cloud Strategy initiatives, helping users connect from wherever they are, rather than having to visit local council, territory, or federal government offices in person. Government agencies need access to a variety of ecosystems. For example, one may need payment platforms for financial services, and another may need to deliver services globally for foreign aid or medical research. Australians increasingly expect online government to match or surpass the speed, security and reliability of digital retail, banking, and other private sector services. The public sector must break through old IT constraints to find, share, and deliver value for the Australian people in new ways.

Digital transformation in both the public and private sector is critical to resolving Australia’s declining productivity. Australia is already lagging in digital readiness with a lower than global average digital maturity index. And while the Australian government is on the case with the setup of the Digital Transformation Agency (DTA) and Prosperity Through Innovation plan, the government needs to adopt the following blueprint for the future to catch up with the rest of the world and leading corporations on the digital front.

A Modern Digital Blueprint for the Future:

  1. Like the private sector, the public sector must embrace digital transformation.

The new DTA must ensure that government agencies utilise a robust, private, fast, scalable and secure information exchange and interconnection platform to streamline multiagency information exchange, meeting private sector demands.

  1. A modern IT architecture should prioritise convenience and remove complexities.

The Australian government must integrate a digital chain of consumer networks, industry systems and agency partners to be in close proximity with them and ensure instantaneous service delivery.

  1. Government modernisation requires nationwide interconnection.

In line with Vision 2025, the Australian government must be prepared to ride the next wave of digital innovation with greater agility to allow citizens to access all government services digitally with distributed interconnected IT platforms.

  1. Transforming network architecture at the edge enhances critical capabilities.

5G networks, machine learning (ML), and quantum computing platforms at the digital edge accelerate critical agency data collection and vital analysis, resulting in instant insights to enable swift emergency responses.

  1. Future-proof your smart nation to manage disasters and health crises

IoT and sensor-based trend analytics with localised insights equip governments with integrated policy-based crisis recovery tools and operational efficiency in addressing challenges in real time and maximising public resources, improving the quality of life.

A Modern Infrastructure:

Government agencies need a new architecture offering direct interconnection to clouds, partners, and ecosystems with closer proximity to consumers and other agencies. The seamless and integrated experience provides a digital supply chain of rich ecosystems of agencies, industry, clouds, networks, and partners.

When it comes to a modern infrastructure, by deploying hybrid and multicloud infrastructures, the government can integrate cloud seamlessly with other infrastructure capability. The localised control points achieved through cloud effectively simplify applications, data and multicloud integration to streamline interagency operations.

There are many benefits for integrating cloud. Firstly, the government can optimise cloud networks to control costs while monitoring bandwidth to increase capacity, reduce latency, and improve distribution, resilience and security. Driver and Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA), a U.K. government organisation, chose to move services to the cloud with an interconnection strategy Digital Transformation for Government with Equinix Cloud Exchange Fabric® (ECX Fabric®). By doing so, they cut latency by two-thirds and time to add new connections from months to hours.1

Many agencies can also access cost-effective hybrid multicloud by moving applications into clouds, leveraging compliance partners, and developing flexible, consumption-based contracts. This modern IT infrastructure provides smart and convenient services managed by digital platforms and helps to remove complexity. The Australian government is growing cloud partner ecosystems to enhance distributed cloud security. They are also building workforce skills to drive cloud adoption and implementation. Cloud complexity is escalating as agencies increasingly leverage hybrid multicloud infrastructures to optimise and scale application performance.

Hybrid multicloud architectures represent the best path to engage with a rapidly changing infrastructure landscape. It allows you to manage legacy data-intensive processes while simultaneously embracing new “born-in-the-cloud” data frameworks. A hybrid multicloud architecture achieves this integration within the context of a single platform that can cope with a heterogeneous environment and that is capable of supporting colocation and virtual services. This integrated approach allows you to access multiple digital and business ecosystems either physically or virtually.

Services in the cloud connect government services behind the scenes for a seamless, consistent experience. Governments can integrate their capabilities with multicloud by deploying applications in clouds and choosing application programming interface (API) services built for elasticity. The hybrid multicloud interconnects cloud processing to provide innovative and better services to increase productivity. The key is implementing a simplified platform that does not compromise reliability, security or control and that is delivered by an organisation that understands this complexity.

What’s Next?

Interconnection leaders like Equinix provide best practices to ensure successful hybrid and multicloud IT infrastructure deployments for both the private and public sector. Such scalable and optimisable platforms transform manual services to real digital applications that are continuously available public services for government agencies. They also ensure cost reduction by economies of scale.

To facilitate interagency requirements, Equinix can assess your current technology environments and offer valuable advice on digital transformation for a digitally ready state. The lines between cloud and edge are blurring as applications shift to being cloud-enabled at the digital edge. This is bound to evolve in the coming decade with 5G technology as accessing data instantly at the periphery becomes the new norm. A modern and smart nation requires an interconnected digital government where population centres, commerce, and digital and business ecosystems meet and interact in real time.

At Equinix, we want government to take advantage of the adoption of cloud through hybrid multicloud deployments. We recognise the security-related priorities governments need to think about — including information classification and aggregated data risk — and we have a track record of fulfilling those requirements. We also have all the required accreditation applicable to the housing and storage of government data. We particularly understand that as data sovereignty policies and legislation changes, it will become more important for executives to consider how governments and enterprises collect, process, and store information. With this in mind, not only can Equinix work with agencies to get their workloads to the cloud, we can foster a tailor-made hybrid/multi-cloud strategy suitable for any specific requirements. This is important for ensuring an agile approach that will cater to shifting priorities for years to come.

1. Equinix, “DVSA Deploys to the Cloud, Reduces Latency with ECX Fabric.”

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