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Service NSW

Government Digital Transaction Portal

In late 2012, PreviousNext was engaged by Service NSW to provide the Drupal design, development, support and managed cloud hosting for a new customer-focused portal to facilitate access to 700+ government services and transactions. The portal now serves as the digital channel to complement Service NSW’s physical service centres.

Since the website first launched in July 2013, PreviousNext has worked with Service NSW to iteratively improve the user experience, add functionality and integrate new services. The project is now regarded as a benchmark for “Gov 2.0” citizen engagement initiatives in Australia.

Challenge

In partnership with SMS Management & Technology, Service NSW commissioned PreviousNext to create a unifying website that would simplify access to government services that sit within hundreds of disparate websites.

With a launch date set for July 1, 2013, phase one consisted of creating a functional, mobile-responsive user interface that would enable consumers to quickly and easily navigate their way to their preferred service. The portal is also used within the physical service centres for self service, touch-screen kiosks.

In tandem with the main portal, PreviousNext also built Service NSW’s corporate intranet using aGov, the open Drupal distribution for building standards-compliant government websites.

Once live, the focus for the team became:

  • Rapid development and releases in response to customer feedback
  • Enhancing the functionality in the Drupal CMS to ensure content could be managed efficiently
  • Addition of new features as Service NSW took on new transactions and responsibilities

PreviousNext have been able to deliver with:

  • Agile development and delivery of changes and new features
  • Weekly deploys of new features to the managed cloud hosting platform
  • Automated testing and continuous integration to avoid code regressions
  • Ongoing consultation with the Service NSW team to identify improvements

Examples of new features include:

  • Integration of the NSW Government Directory, previously a separately hosted and managed site that was often out of date
  • Improvements to the Service Centre Locator to help users find their nearest government service centre, as more Service NSW locations were opened
  • Finely tuned CMS with a content structure and workflow that enables the content team to quickly publish changes and maintain more than 700 government transactions
  • Seamless user experience between the site and the newly launched “MyServiceNSW Account” on the Salesforce platform

Solution

With SMSMT leading the original customer experience strategy, PreviousNext designed the WCAG compliant, responsive mobile user interface and built the platform in Drupal. PreviousNext also advised Service NSW on managed cloud hosting for the site and facilitated the architecture, deployment and support for the cloud platform. The initial focus for the 2013 launch of Service NSW was to get the website live, so timing was critical, and PreviousNext provided the Service NSW team with a site that met the immediate needs of all vested parties both on time and within budget.

Outcome

Since the initial launch, PreviousNext has engaged in a program of ongoing support and continuous enhancements to functionality of the Service NSW site. Once live, the focus for the team became the quick development and release in response to customer feedback, enhancing the CMS to ensure content could be managed efficiently, plus the addition of new features as Service NSW took on new transactions and responsibilities.

PreviousNext have been able to deliver these outcomes with Agile development and delivery of changes and new features, as well as automated testing and continuous integration to avoid regressions. Frequent consultation with the Service NSW team meant we were able to identify improvements and perform weekly deploys of new features as needed, all of which are easily accommodated on a managed cloud hosting platform. These new features include the integration of the NSW Government Directory, previously a separately hosted and managed site that was often out of date, and improvements to the “Service Centre Locator” to help users find their nearest government service centre as more Service NSW locations were opened. 

Service NSW now have a finely-tuned Drupal CMS with a content structure and workflow that enables the content team to quickly publish changes and maintain more than 700 government transactions. The portal is a benchmark example of shift in the NSW Government’s approach to digital services, demonstrating a movement towards a more Agile approach to project development and an embracing of open source technologies hosted in the cloud.