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The Weekly Advertiser Horsham - - News -

Tech­nol­ogy gi­ant Google has pub­lished a North­ern Grampians Shire Coun­cil dig­i­tal-trans­for­ma­tion story in a cloud­com­put­ing en­vi­ron­ment, giv­ing the coun­cil in­ter­na­tional exposure.

The coun­cil has es­tab­lished sig­nif­i­cant op­er­a­tional ef­fi­cien­cies as part of dig­i­tal re­de­vel­op­ment in­volv­ing Google.

Mayor Kevin Er­win said coun­cil rep­re­sen­ta­tives had men­tioned to se­nior Google staff dur­ing a trip to Can­berra ear­lier this year how the coun­cil had achieved or­gan­i­sa­tional ef­fi­ciency ‘by go­ing Google’.

“This chance meet­ing trig­gered a se­ries of on­line video con­fer­ences with se­nior Google staff from Sin­ga­pore and Syd­ney, plus a public-re­la­tions team from Lon­don,” he said.

“It soon be­came ap­par­ent we are one of Google’s high­est client users in­ter­na­tion­ally, hav­ing suc­cess­fully in­te­grated the en­tire or­gan­i­sa­tion to a cloud-based com­put­ing en­vi­ron­ment.

“Added to this was the cap­ti­vat­ing story of a small ru­ral com­mu­nity that is do­ing big things with tech­nol­ogy.

“When you in­clude what we’re do­ing with the search for dark mat­ter at the Stawell Un­der­ground Physics Lab­o­ra­tory and our new sus­tain­able jobs at Nec­tar Farms and Bul­gana, it’s a story that’s not only cap­ti­vat­ing but un­ex­pected.

“These projects not only cre­ate the jobs of the fu­ture econ­omy but will lever­age in­no­va­tion in our schools and be­come a source of ex­cite­ment, pride and in­spi­ra­tion for the broader com­mu­nity.

“Peo­ple ex­pect gov­ern­ments to move at a glacial pace, but that’s not the way we are do­ing things.”

North­ern Grampians Shire Coun­cil is one of 10 gov­ern­ment-sec­tor or­gan­i­sa­tions Google is pro­mot­ing as a cus­tomer suc­cess story.

It sits along­side the likes of Manch­ester City Coun­cil in Eng­land and the City of Los An­ge­les in the United States of Amer­ica.

Cr Er­win said the move to a com­plete Google en­vi­ron­ment had trans­formed the way the coun­cil op­er­ated and col­lab­o­rated, ‘cre­at­ing a smarter, more flex­i­ble and ef­fi­cient work­place’.

He added that one of the other big re­sults since the tran­si­tion in 2014 was the coun­cil be­com­ing a pa­per­less of­fice en­vi­ron­ment, re­duc­ing print­ing costs by 90 per­cent in the process.

“Led by a mantra of ‘any­time, any­where and any de­vice’, the coun­cil has achieved ma­jor pro­duc­tiv­ity gains with work­place flex­i­bil­ity, im­proved col­lab­o­ra­tion and a mas­sive re­duc­tion in the down­time of IT in­fras­truc­ture,” Cr Er­win said.

“Our story also demon­strates the op­por­tu­ni­ties that can be un­locked for ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties when they have ac­cess to mo­bile telecom­mu­ni­ca­tions, plus fast and ef­fi­cient in­ter­net.

“I’d like to men­tion our lo­cal farm­ers who are do­ing amaz­ing things with tech­nol­ogy as they find new ways to max­imise pro­duc­tion in a drier cli­mate.

“While I’m pleased it’s ru­ral com­mu­ni­ties lead­ing the way, it’s time more gov­ern­ments got on board the in­no­va­tion train.”

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