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8119.0 - Government Use of Information Technology, Australia, 1999-2000  
Previous ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 28/05/2002   
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This publication presents results, in respect of the 1999-2000 financial year, from an Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) survey on the use of information technology and telecommunications (IT&T) by government organisations. This is the third ABS survey of IT&T use by government, with the previous collections being conducted in respect of the 1993-94 and 1997-98 financial years. The 1999-2000 survey provides information on government expenditure on IT&T and IT employment.


Users should take care when comparing data from this publication with previous surveys. In particular, the scope of the 1997-98 and 1999-2000 surveys differed, so figures in this publication are not comparable to the 1997-98 publication figures. More details on the scope differences can be found in paragraphs 6 to 8 of the Explanatory Notes.


Total expenditure on information technology and telecommunications (IT&T) by government organisations during 1999-2000 was an estimated $4.3 billion or 5% of total government operating expenditure.

Federal departments and agencies accounted for just under half (47%) of the total government expenditure on IT&T. State/territory departments and agencies accounted for slightly less (45%) and local government accounted for the balance (8%). When the proportion of IT&T expenditure to the total government operating expenditure is compared for each level of government, the following proportions are obtained 7% (federal), 4% (state/territory) and 2% (local government).

IT&T outsourcing expenses were $1,168 million or 27% of the total IT&T expenditure by government organisations in 1999-2000. While the ratio of IT&T outsourcing expenses to total IT&T operating expenses showed little variation between federal and state/territory governments at 29% and 27% respectively, a much lower ratio of 15% was reported by local government.

During 1999-2000, total IT&T operating expenses per employee were $4,800. However, there was considerable variation across the three types of government, with total IT&T operating expenses estimated at $9,500 per federal government employee, $3,600 per state/territory government employee and $2,300 per local government employee.

IT employees accounted for only 2% of total employment of government organisations at the end of June 2000. Federal departments and agencies had the highest proportion of IT employees to total employment (4%) compared with 1% for both state/territory and local government departments and agencies.

Table 1 - Government expenditure on IT&T, Year ended 30 June 2000

Wages and salaries
of IT employees

IT&T outsourcing
Other IT&T
operating expenses
Total IT&T
operating expenses

Federal departments and agencies
State/Territory departments and agencies
Local governement

Copyright Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2002

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