IBM Cloud is helping achieve New Zealand government’s digital vision

Author: Jo Healey, IBM New Zealand General Manager, Global Technology Services.

Jo HealeyMany of New Zealand’s multi-lateral relationships are driven by trade, geographic proximity or historical connections, but an emerging network that I’m watching with huge interest is the Digital 7.  The ‘D7’ as it’s known, is a group of the world’s most advanced digital nations who share a goal of harnessing digital technology and new ways of working to improve citizens’ lives.

The original members are Estonia, Israel, New Zealand, South Korea and the United Kingdom, with Canada and Uruguay joining the group in February 2018. These countries have a track record in leading digital government, including designing services around users’ needs and sharing open source solutions.

The D7 promotes an exciting vision of technology-enabled public services that match the best of the mobile-first consumer brand experiences we enjoy daily. Kiwis want Government services to be as easy to access as online banking or booking travel.

The Beehive - Executive Wing, New Zealand Parliament

The Beehive – Executive Wing, New Zealand Parliament

Providing public services online is more nuanced of course because of extra care needed to protect citizen’s privacy and ensure equitable access for all, which requires the most reliable and scalable IT infrastructure. Government agencies increasingly turn to cloud-based services because they provide greater choice, are more cost effective and offer the advantages of rigorous policies on security and privacy to steward personal data.

IBM now operates nearly 60 public cloud data centres in 19 countries, including four in Australia, and we recently added our public cloud offering to the Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) agreement with the Department of Internal Affairs (DIA). IBM provides the only single-vendor hybrid cloud solution approved for New Zealand Government agencies so this move allows agencies to diversify risks through a multi-cloud strategy while simplifying vendor management and procurement processes.

We were appointed to the New Zealand Government panel of IaaS suppliers in 2012 as part of the ICT Roadmap initiative. Our latest offering enables public sector agencies to move workloads seamlessly between public and onshore clouds according to their infrastructure requirements, and easier access to the latest analytics and cognitive technologies (think “insight as a service”), to gain insights from their data.

No public sector agency has unlimited funds and IT infrastructure is a major expense. IBM Cloud cuts infrastructure costs, increasing financial visibility and accelerating return on investment, giving government stakeholders the confidence to continue investing in innovation to extend more services to the public.

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