Shared Services on hold, under review

Premier Colin Barnett has confirmed that an independent review of the Office of Shared Services (OSS) will take place, after ongoing concerns from government departments and the auditor-general.


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And the Govt said unto its departments, we need people to build the new system which you must someday join. And the depts said unto themselves, here is a good way of getting rid of deadwood, and set the deadwood to the OSS, and lo the OSS wandered in the wilderness for years. And the Govt said unto OSS, why are you wandering in the wilderness? and the OSS said unto the Govt, all the depts keep asking for special fixes and ways of doing things. So the Govt had a review and said unto its depts change your ways to meet the system not the system to meet your ways, now stop mucking about and get into OSS. And the depts said unto the OAG and their friends in the media, look we've not met the savings (as we're still mucking about) and the service is bad (because we're still mucking about doing things the old way), and lo the Govt called for another review so the people see them doing something, even though this called for depts and the OSS to stop doing what they should be doing.

The shared services plan was never going to work - not because of the lack of available appropriate technology but mainly (imho) because of the lack of will to change the culture of organisations. It's a people issue and not a technology issue - but the fact that expensive technology solutions were selected to be implemented by expensive IT consultants for projects of undefined and often undefinable scope was a recipe for expensive time and budget over-runs. If the WA government was a green fields site, then OSS could have been implemented quickly and efficiently but it (of course) was not a green fields site. And most people generally don't participate eagerly and willingly in removing their own jobs. At the moment, the OSS eggs are half scrambled and the omelette is half cooked. Makes for an interesting time to stop, but the money could probably be better used elsewhere. Maybe.

It will be interesting if the review investigated the big kickbacks to certain individuals who won the major IT contracts at the DET, in the first instance. That is where the rot really started. And who was the Labor Minister at the time???

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