Week 118

There was a six month break since the last week notes, sorry. Now it’s a new financial year. Let’s start again.

What’s happened over the last few months?

Our team has grown significantly. Across the whole program, we’re now about 350 people across 38 teams.

In the branch, we’ve just set up two new product teams: one team looking at making it easier to understand the rules and requirements for exporting (starting with reimagining the existing Manual of Importing Country Requirements) and another team looking at transforming the digital experience of the National Residue Survey.

The Export Service has grown too. Some of the highlights include:

  • Our product to manage export establishments online has now been available in public beta for about 6 months. We have since expanded the service to allow new establishments to be registered online and for existing establishments to be revoked.

  • Our product hygiene dashboards for meat processors are also now widely available in public beta, and our new platform for auditors is well progressed in a private beta for plant exporters.

  • Our Guidance and Support team have shipped new pages to help users start with the service. You can check them out here.

In the spirit of agile comms we’ve written a few blog posts that have been published to the department’s account on LinkedIn. There is an index of all our blog posts here.

And, of course, our teams have now amassed plenty of mission patches:

Mission patches at July 2022

What’s happened this week?

  • This week was our first week in the new Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry (DAFF). The main impacts for our team have been to update the brand across the Export Service, and update links to our content that has moved to the DAFF website. The Agriculture Design System has been very helpful here: we were able to update our common header component and then roll it quickly out across all our applications.

  • July also marks the start of Quarter 1, and so we held quarterly planning workshops on Monday and Tuesday this week. This included our teams setting out their milestones for Q1 and then working through the dependencies across other teams and our platform.

  • It was NAIDOC Week and on Monday I went along to a session hosted by Chris about the Jawun APS Secondment Program. There were some incredible stories shared from DAFF colleagues who had previously taken part in the program, working in an Indigenous community.

  • Our Registration and Approvals team shipped the ability for export businesses to apply to revoke their establishment. This replaces another of the EX26 paper forms - just one more now to go.

  • Our friends in the Digital Services Division, who look after the cloud infrastructure that we run the Export Service on, had a celebration on Thursday this week to mark the milestone of deploying the first app to the new cloud environment. We are excited passengers on this journey. As we gradually migrate all our apps to the new platform, we will be able to run faster.

  • The Quota team are finishing their alpha phase, and presented a great showcase on the needs they’ve identified, the principles in which they’re approaching designing our new quota management capabilities, and some prototypes of the new tools we’re going to build for our staff who administer the quota processes.

  • I’ve started using Zotero to organise all the interesting presentations, reports and blog posts on digital government I’ve come across over the last 10 years or so. (They previously lived in Pinboard bookmarks and desktop folders.)