I have often drawn attention to the fact that Australian Public Service agencies seem reticent about social media and Gov 2.0
Lead agencies are crucial to setting an example to other Agencies and it is excellent to observe that the Australian Taxation Office (ATO) is doing just that.
The ATO has recently established a presence on Twitter. Go take a look.
As of right now the ATO has 510 followers on Twitter. Among that are 19 lists, some connected to the accounting industry. All to be expected.
So that is the plus side.
On the need to improvement side it would be great to see the ATO following people and lists. This is not the case. Zero in fact.
There are a total of 16 Tweets – covering topics from fraud to working in the ATO. Not bad in themselves, but what all this suggests is that the ATO is using social media as ‘just another channel’. Not so good.
All of which suggests a good start, but how about taking some slightly bigger steps in the direction of citizen engagement. Here are some suggestions:
Link to small business groups and invite them to talk to you.
Ask question like what would the ATO have to be like for you to work for them?
If you were Tax Commissioner for the day what would you do?
What is the one thing the ATO could do to better serve the public?
And the list goes on.
That is before we go near the bigger question of why not allow ATO staff to directly engage online with the community? And how about staff engaging on line with each other and the wider public service.
So all in all a great start, but with room for improvement. In teaching terms a C+. It would be great to see all APS agencies delivering an A+. Or at least engaging people to show that is where they wish to go.
So let’s give credit where credit is due. And while we are about it tweet the ATO