f Advise | Agency Performance | Department of Finance Annual Report 18-19

Advise

Several projects across the financial year have been integral to government and influenced by Finance.


Finance is sought out by the public sector for its leadership, knowledge and innovative thinking.

Simplifying buying goods, services and works through procurement reform.

Finance leads the Enhance Public Sector Procurement initiative – one of 20 State Government priority reform projects underway to deliver better outcomes for the WA community.

The key objective of the project is to introduce a consolidated whole-of-government procurement framework to bring together the disparate approaches to goods, services, community services and works procurement.

The Service Priority Review, Special Inquiry into Government Programs and Projects, and recent investigations into unethical behaviour in procurement are key drivers for this reform project. They identified that the fragmentation and inconsistency in the current procurement framework leads to confusion for industry and agencies, increases the risk of poor process and limits government’s ability to readily deliver social and economic policy outcomes across government expenditure.

By incorporating recommendations from these reviews and subsequent stakeholder consultation, Finance’s reform efforts will:

  • reduce complexity and inconsistencies to encourage industry participation;
  • increase public confidence in procurement integrity;
  • build sector-wide procurement capability;
  • encourage collaboration and knowledge sharing across the public sector; and
  • unlock opportunities for innovation and more strategic decision making through better collection and analysis of procurement data.

Throughout the 2018-19 financial year, Finance delivered stage one of the project – the development of a contemporary procurement framework. More than 500 people from industry, regional businesses, government agencies and public authorities were consulted throughout the year with feedback sought through targeted surveys, face-to-face consultation, and cross-sector procurement forums.

Changes to the procurement framework will be supported by an online ‘one-stop shop,’ which will assist industry and agency practitioners to navigate all aspects of government buying in WA. Developed in June 2019, it is expected the new content will launch on the State Government’s WA.gov.au platform in the second half of 2019.

Works Agency Council

Finance, in conjunction with the Department of Premier and Cabinet, initiated the Works Agency Council to promote greater cooperation between agencies involved in the delivery of public works and to support the achievement of the procurement reform outcomes.

Chaired by Finance due to its expertise in delivering major infrastructure, the Council facilitates cross-agency collaboration, coordination and information-sharing on policy implementation, procurement, project management and asset management matters.

This year, the Council has capitalised on areas of common experience to focus on:

  • readiness for implementation of project bank accounts (PBAs) and procurement reform;
  • the challenges and opportunities in responding to the Government’s policy objectives; and
  • providing advice to the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety on a security of payment recommendation in the Fiocco Report and the use of standard contract forms.
Responsible Supplier Pact

A draft Responsible Supplier Pact was also developed this year and will ultimately ensure government does business with suppliers who act ethically. The draft Pact, which comprises ethical procurement principles and a supplier code of conduct, has been released for public comment (phase 1) with enforcement mechanisms being considered as part of phase 2.

Finance presenting on the new contemporary procurement framework at the Leadership in Procurement Forum.

Driving innovation from the private sector through Market-led Proposals.

The implementation of the Market-led Proposals Policy in April 2019 is another example of Finance providing advice and expertise across government and to industry.

Market-led Proposals (MLPs) are proposals from the private or not-for-profit sector to build or finance infrastructure, or provide goods or services where the State Government has not requested the proposal. These proposals are generally outside the normal competitive procurement processes of government but still deliver value to the community.

The Department of the Premier and Cabinet developed the policy with Finance responsible for its implementation and ongoing management. As part of implementing the policy, Finance worked in close collaboration with the Department of the Premier and Cabinet to advise on policy and governance improvements.

The Policy, which provides a whole-of-government approach to managing unsolicited proposals, was enacted on 12 April. Finance was integral in the preparatory works prior to implementation, including consultation with both government agencies and industry on the MLP template, and the development of an online portal with all the relevant information and tools for industry to submit proposals.

Finance was also integral in establishing a steering committee with an independent chairperson, which will evaluate proposals, ensure collaboration across government and provide recommendations directly to the Government.

Several proposals have already been received from industry with feedback highlighting the policy is very much welcomed and supported.

The introduction of the MLPs policy offers another avenue for job creation for Western Australians, harnesses innovative ideas from the public sector and delivers on the Government’s election commitments outlined in the Plan for Jobs policy.

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