We believe in Government. We believe in it as a force for good. We believe in its capacity to make broad reaching and impactful change possible for millions of people, if put to use correctly. As such, Government is both a partner and a central focus of our work.
We believe that government is unique, that those working in government can drive innovation and create great change. It can lead and solve problems inherent in a democracy. We have very high expectations nowadays of how government services should be delivered.
We focus on making Government as effective and efficient as we can. We focus on working with the individuals within the bureaucracy – rather than attempting to change the big Government corpus. Big organisations happen to be subject to criticism due to their overwhelming structure and institutional nature. It is hard to change structure and flow – but its structure is what makes it able to solve the big problems.
As citizens, we set very high expectations for Government, much higher than we do for the private sector. Many make the argument that everything should, for this reason, be turned over to the private sector, who are known for their smooth transitions. Yet we know that the private sector is just as inept at times. Private industry comes with its own baggage and is known to serve its own interest. And we know that the effects of making departments and organisations innovative in their practices and systems are numerous.
We support the initiatives of government to innovative. And government needs to innovate in order to deliver the services its citizens need.
With technology, we now expect a seamless user experience from government.
“So sometimes I talk to CEOs, they come in and they start telling me about leadership, and here’s how we do things. And I say, well, if all I was doing was making a widget or producing an app, and I didn’t have to worry about whether poor people could afford the widget, or I didn’t have to worry about whether the app had some unintended consequences… then I think those suggestions are terrific.“
/ BARACK OBAMA
Government is restrained in many ways, making it challenging to foster and implement innovation. But it is a myth to think that government is not innovative.
Hacking the bureaucracy means keeping focussed on the problem at all times, while ignoring discussions around product and solutions. Regardless of the impetus, failing to define the change you are seeking is the very first point of failure for most projects. Seeking to define the very thing you want to achieve is the most overlooked stage in hacking any bureaucracy.
Using our experience in government, we wrote a free report and guide into government innovation.
We should focus on making Government as effective and efficient as we can.
Portable has worked with numerous government departments who want to make the Government runs better.
Dept. Industry, Innovation and Science
Portable worked with the Bizlab unit in Canberra, to re-examine the ways they approach change and ideas in the department. The Department wanted internal processes to be more conducive to innovative ideas, believing that engagement within the Department stifled the capacity of ideas to flourish.
Dept. Foreign Affairs and Trade
Our work with the Dept. of Foreign Trade involved recreating their InnovationXchange, a hub designed to catalyse and support innovation across the Australian aid program. Portable’s work involved the successful installation of an open source CMS and developing an interactive and global map (IXC Map).
Dept. Premier and Cabinet
Portable works with the Dept. of Premier & Cabinet (Vic) in the maintenance and support of the Possible Parliamentary Questions (PPQ) and Public Accounts and Estimates (PAEC) systems. We’ve worked to develop the web PPQ and PAEC application, which manages the Dept.’s brief for PPQ and PAEC hearings.