back to article Oz auditor: Number of times failed government biometric project met a milestone = None

How much IT can you buy for AU$34m (£18m, $24m)? None at all, if you're the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission in the market for a biometric system. The Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) this week released its report into ACIC's failed biometric identification system (BIS) project which failed last year, and …

  1. W.S.Gosset

    Rigorous ITIL and Prince2 practices strike again!

  2. Trollslayer

    AU$34m? Pfft!

    Remember that little NHS IT project?

    1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge
  3. A Non e-mouse Silver badge

    It always amazes me how big IT projects can go so wrong and no-one seems to take the blame. Yet if one of my small projects ( less than £10K) goes 10% overspend I get a grilling about my budget management skills.

    1. FlossyThePig

      Is this a case of "Look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves."

    2. Rasslin ' in the mud

      Not enough targets

      "Yet if one of my small projects ( less than £10K) goes 10% overspend I get a grilling about my budget management skills."

      I note the use of first person singular in your post, and therein lies your problem. Your scapegoat population is too limited.

  4. lglethal Silver badge

    Geez, I wish the government would give ME a goodwill bonus of $2.9 million. I mean, I've produced the same amount of usable work as this project, and I havent cost the government a penny, Heck you could say that for the same work I've SAVED them $34 million. I'll be waiting for that goodwill bonus in the mail, then shall i?

  5. Will Godfrey Silver badge

    They should hire me

    Every bit of coding I've ever done has worked.

    ... mostly

    ... eventually

    1. Fading

      Re: They should hire me

      Using the Eventual consistent coding model? Seems you are over qualified for this project.

      1. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

        Re: They should hire me

        This isn't eventually-consistent; it's the weaker "eventually good enough" guarantee, under which most successful computer applications work.

        A yet-weaker but surprisingly still useful guarantee is "never going to work". It's still useful because a surprising number of vendors get paid for it, as in this case.

  6. MonkeyCee

    Requirements first

    "A requirements-gathering process handled by PwC overlooked these, meaning they were also missing from the 2015-issued tender."

    Ah, so it was fucked from the start.

    If you can't pin down the requirements for a system, especially all the assumed domain knowledge, then things will be fucked.

    The method that served me well has been "explain it to a Martian" technique. It will seem stupid, but if a spec is written that an alien could understand it without requiring any additional explanation, then it should be pretty clear to whoever ends up having to write the solution.

    Since this often involves much more involvement of the actual users of the system, as compared to manglement (who have a very theoretical view of how things work at best), it often results in a more useful system. It's also HATED by many middle manglement and system architects, as it shows that they don't actually understand what the system is for, or even how the business runs.

    If it's not in the requirements, it's not going to be in the product. Yes, even the things you'd assume would be there. If there an assumption, write it down... :D

  7. PaulVD

    So, how much is PwC going to be sued for in respect of their incompetence in working out the requirements?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      They need an independent inquiry first, run by a renown international firm of management consultants... like, erm, PwC

    2. Michael Wojcik Silver badge

      The beauty of gathering requirements, as a task, is that you can always blame the respondents.

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