Digital capabilities have become the cornerstone for achieving operational efficiencies, creating economic growth opportunities, and improving citizens’ lives in today’s global economy. Forward-thinking government leaders recognize increasingly that in addition to providing reliable internet connectivity, and innovative online services, it is imperative for them to ensure that online citizen services and infrastructure are inclusive and accessible to all – regardless of age, gender, geographies and abilities.
Demonstrating this line of thinking is the Singapore government’s move to accelerate the provision of digital devices to students when schools had to move online during the pandemic, so that students from all backgrounds had the opportunity to be successful.
Enabling an interconnected government by transforming data centers into cloud ecosystems
In this white paper, see how the government has begun a journey of IT modernization and digital transformation to meet the demand for highly reliable, secure and innovative services, along with the requirements of an increasingly mobile workforce and ever-present budget pressures.Read More
So how would public sector organizations apply this thinking in their provision of online services so that citizens can fully participate in and benefit from the digital economy? We believe the key lies in the ability to establish digital connections on demand. The ways in which connectivity enhances flexibility as well as enables government services to be provisioned effectively to benefit citizens can be found in the WISE Employment (WISE) case study.
Digital connectivity drives public sector leadership
As a non-profit provider of employment support for citizens with disabilities under Australia’s Department of Social Services programs, WISE recognized Covid-19’s growing impact on overall national unemployment rates. Of particular concern was that individuals with disabilities would be twice as likely to be unemployed.
To address the needs of its target constituents, WISE moved quickly to set up more mobile recruitment offices across the country to extend its reach. The first thing they did was to find the most efficient way to connect these remote offices. The set-up time previously using traditional phone networks, took weeks and even months.
Consultations with Equinix and our partner Telstra resulted in the recommendation to use 4G and 5G technologies to connect WISE’s new offices. Requiring just two hours from activation, which can be done at any time, from anywhere, this arrangement would significantly speed up the time to engage with customers. To complement the expansion of its physical services, WISE developed a new website that is hosted in the cloud, to provide a virtual platform to provide additional service support that customers can use conveniently.
Partnering to enhance corporate and community benefits
For WISE, choosing to deploy in Equinix’s data centers opened up significant opportunities to partner with more than 10,000 organizations, including leading network, cloud and IT service providers.
According to Global Interconnection Index (GXI) Vol. 5, a market study recently announced by Equinix, the global interconnection bandwidth or private data exchange is expected to be 15 times larger than the internet by 2024.  An interconnected ecosystem, supported by a secure, high-speed data sharing platform, is key to enabling direct connections to vast resources that can deliver a strategic advantage, be it in the form of localized expert skills and proven solutions for supporting digital transactions.
Equinix’s ability to directly connect WISE’s digital infrastructure with Amazon Web Services’ secure cloud services platform provided WISE’s IT team with computing power, storage, content delivery and other functionalities to ensure scalability and growth. This also delivered a host of benefits, such as co-innovation and value creation, to WISE and the communities they serve.
Building a future-ready digital foundation
In helping WISE to implement a hybrid cloud environment for connecting to other organizations, Equinix consolidated WISE’s disparate data center environments into one location and provide cloud connectivity for ease of management and monitoring. This transformed infrastructure reduced power costs by 20 per cent and achieved significant energy and financial cost savings, totalling more than US$3.6 million over five years.
As importantly, WISE now had a future-ready digital platform as the foundation to roll out new services to meet evolving needs, such as tools based on AI and robotics.
Around the world, as progressive government and non-government organizations collaborating closely to create resilient digital-first public sector network infrastructures, they will be in a much stronger position to address the rapidly evolving needs of its citizens, as well as derive economic value from their technology investments.