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Mr Peter Woolcott AO, Australian Public Service Commissioner

Launch of the Digital Professional Stream

17 April 2020

668 words – 5 minute read


Hi, I’m Peter Woolcott, the Australian Public Service Commissioner. Thank you for taking the time to join me as I launch the APS Digital Professional Stream.

I’d like to acknowledge the Traditional Owners of the land on which we meet today, and pay my respects to elders past, present and emerging.

The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted our need to be more agile with technology and adapt to new ways of working if we are to effectively serve the Australian community.

In this uncertain environment the Digital Transformation Agency is working hard to support the APS by giving us the tools and capabilities to succeed.

Tools such as the Protected Utility Blueprint, which helps us communicate and collaborate in a safe and secure manner.

Even before the pandemic the DTA were working hard to remove some of the barriers to collaboration and true reform within the APS.

The current crisis is helping blow those barriers away and we are making remarkable progress on the digital front.

To continue this progress it will be critical that we attract and continue to develop talented individuals.

The Thodey Review identified a path to achieving this through the professionalisation of specific roles within the APS.

It has become increasingly obvious since the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak, just how critical IT and digital roles are in enabling the public service to function effectively.

Digital Professional Stream

Today I am pleased to launch the Digital Professional Stream and strategy.

This strategy will build and uplift the core digital expertise of the APS workforce, and the specialist expertise of those in digital roles.

We will take a design-led approach to delivering this Strategy. This means we will learn, adapt and iterate based on feedback over the first year. I expect we will have learnt a lot of lessons to apply from our current situation.

The strategy is informed by international experience, our own recent experiences and extensive research across sectors and tiers of government.

I encourage you to read the strategy, which can be found on the Commission’s website.

Digital Head of Profession

The Head of the Digital Professional Stream will advise the APS on trends in the digital space, particularly when it comes to how we attract digital talent and prepare for upcoming challenges.

For this reason, and given the unique role and responsibilities of the Digital Transformation Agency, the CEO of the DTA will assume the role of Head of the Digital Professional Stream.

It is easy to connect the work of the DTA to the challenges I spoke of earlier and see the impact their work will have on this professional stream.

The Head of Profession will provide advice and assistance to agency heads and will not supersede their authority to make decisions.

The APS and the Head of the Digital Profession must work together to ensure we do not revert to business as usual when we emerge from our current state.

I believe we can come out stronger, more agile and more joined up than ever before.

Introducing Randall

I am pleased to announce that the Secretaries Board has asked the CEO of the DTA, Randall Brugeaud, to be the first Head of the Digital Profession.

Randall joined the DTA as CEO on the first of July 2018 following a 30 year career spanning the public and private sectors.

In the public sector, Randall has worked in small, medium and large agencies. Prior to joining the DTA he held several senior positions including Deputy Australian Statistician, Chief Operating Officer at the Australian Bureau of Statistics, and Chief Information Officer at the then Department of Immigration and Border Protection.

Outside of the public sector Randall worked with the Boston Consulting Group and founded and operated his own private IT consulting firm.

We are very glad to have him taking on the role of Head of the Digital Profession at such a critical time.

It’s my pleasure to announce Randall’s appointment today and to introduce him to you.

Last reviewed: 
20 May 2020