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Secure platform helps people work better together, breaks down silos

Demand for GovTEAMS triples as Federal and State Governments strive to stay connected during pandemic

Demand for GovTEAMS – the whole of government communications and collaboration platform – has tripled during the pandemic as Federal  agencies seek a secure way to collaborate with one another and private sector partners.

Built using Microsoft Teams, GovTEAMS breaks down department silos and encourages inter-government connections. One silver lining that the APS (Australian Public Service) has drawn from the COVID-19 cloud has been the rapid expansion of inter- and intra-agency collaboration using GovTeams. Rising from 30,000 registered users in March to 100,000 in September, the weekly totals of 317,000 messages exchanged and the 13,500 meetings conducted demonstrate that the APS has the capability to connect, consult, and collaborate, in and out of the office, despite the current circumstances

Public servants can apply for a GovTEAMS account online, and once that is granted they can use the platform to connect from anywhere, on any device, at anytime via video or instant messaging, set up private communities or join open ones to communicate and collaborate. As Teams is integrated with Office 365, all the productivity capability of Office is available from within GovTEAMS.

Designed with security and government compliance at its core, users access GovTEAMS using two factor authentication, and can set up the Microsoft Authenticator app on their smartphone, or smartwatch to allow streamlined single click login.

Steven Worrall, managing director, Microsoft Australia said; “Developed for the Department of Finance by Data#3, GovTEAMS allows public servants to connect to one another, to securely share content and to collaborate with one another and industry partners across network boundaries. This has been critically important as Governments have needed to work closely together in order to achieve the best outcomes for the nation – but also had to keep their people safe and physically distanced. GovTEAMS supports that.

“Recognising the extra demand that was likely when COVID-19 emerged, Microsoft Australia was pleased to be able to expand support for GovTEAMS in order to ensure agencies and individuals could continue to operate without interruption or obstacle.”

While the focus in recent months has been on supporting public servants working remotely, GovTEAMS also supports people throughout their public service career. GovTEAMS accounts can move with an individual, allowing them to remain connected to communities of interest – such as HR or finance – regardless of which agency, or level of government they work for.