Agency Information Guide last reviewed April 2023
The Government Information (Public Access) Act 2009 (NSW) (GIPA Act) gives citizens an enforceable right to access government information unless there is an overriding public interest against disclosure. To assist the public, each agency publishes a guide to the information held and how to access it.
Service NSW is committed to ensuring that citizens can access information about us easily and at the lowest reasonable cost. The following is the Service NSW Agency Information Guide (AIG). It outlines who we are, what we do, the information we make available, and how you can access it.
The purpose of this Service NSW AIG is to provide general information on the:
- structure and functions of Service NSW
- ways in which the functions of the Service NSW, including the decision-making functions, affect members of the public
- specific arrangements in place to enable members of the public to participate in the formulation of Service NSW policy and the exercise of Service NSW functions
- kinds of government information held by the Service NSW
- kinds of government information held by the Service NSW that we make publicly available
- how Service NSW makes or will make government information publicly available
- kinds of information that are (or will be) made publicly available free of charge and those kinds for which a charge is (or will be) imposed.
Where appropriate we have provided links to documents, reports, data and other information throughout this AIG.
This AIG is reviewed regularly and at least every 12 months.
Service NSW is a NSW Government executive agency that joined the Department of Customer Service (DCS) cluster on 1 July 2019. We deliver world-class one-stop-shop services for our customers, business and our partner agencies.
Structure and functions
Our organisational structure includes eight core divisions. As a service provider, most of our activities have a direct impact on the public. The table below outlines our core functions and how they affect the public.
|Office of the CEO||The Office of the CEO leads Service NSW’s strategic direction to ensure the delivery of timely, integrated and cost-effective transactional service delivery to customers and businesses, and meet the NSW Government’s commitment to simplify customer access to government services. This affects the public as it influences the way our customers access government services.|
|Risk, Strategy and Performance||The Risk, Strategy and Performance division work with our security, frontline, digital, projects and partnerships teams to mitigate risk, build strong controls into our customer experiences, and continually uplift our governance functions. This affects our customers as it supports the increasingly diverse and complex products and services they can access through Service NSW.|
|Service NSW Business Bureau||The Service NSW Business Bureau provides guidance and support to new and existing small business owners. The Business Concierge service and advisory programs, Business Connect and the Aboriginal Business Advisory Initiative, give customers free, personalised support and connect business owners with available NSW Government services. This affects our business customers who interact with these teams for help navigating the products and services available to small business owners.|
|Partnerships, Projects and Insights||The Partnerships, Projects and Insights team drives the delivery of projects that provide new services and benefits for our customers, as well as the provision of high-quality cluster and agency partnership support. This affects the public as it drives any new services provided by NSW Government through the Service NSW platforms.|
|Digital Services||Digital Services drives the global standard in customer service and digital excellence and is responsible for end-to-end digital customer experiences, including by powering the Service NSW website and mobile app, and continually developing innovative new digital experiences for customers, such as the Dine and Discover Voucher program and COVID Safe Check-In. This directly affects the public, with millions of our customers accessing our services through digital platforms.|
|Service Delivery – Frontline Channels||Our frontline teams process customer transactions relating to more than 800 services through phone or face-to-face interactions at more than 150 points of presence across regional, remote, and metropolitan NSW. This is our key customer facing function, directly affecting those customers who choose to interact directly with our service staff.|
|Chief Security Officer||The Chief Security Officer ensures the cyber and physical security of all aspects of Service NSW’s business, to deliver on the trust held by customers, teams and government. This indirectly affects the public, because they rely on Service NSW to deliver safe and secure access to NSW Government services.|
|Disaster Preparation and Recovery||The Disaster Preparation and Recovery division leads Service NSW’s emergency management functions to drive improved customer experiences in the face of natural disasters. This directly affects those customers who need to access NSW Government services following a natural disaster.|
The Service NSW team delivers on the NSW Premier’s Priorities and NSW State Priorities of improving government services, providing better government digital services, making it easier to do business and driving public sector diversity. We do this by:
- providing a customer-centric service for the NSW Government through a single point of contact.
- transforming our customers’ digital experience with government
- expanding access to face-to-face services across metropolitan and regional NSW
- supporting our people who help customers across NSW every day
- building awareness of the services we offer and the brand we proudly stand behind.
Our omni-channel approach of face-to-face, phone and online services provides our customers choice.
We are a 'Network Leader' through the provision of the MyServiceNSW Account and as the single front door for government services. We lead 'Service Delivery and Reform' through our Service NSW omnichannel and Service NSW Business Bureau.
More information about Service NSW and its structure is available on our About us section on the Service NSW website.
Information about the Department of Customer Service’s current structure and functions is available in the DCS agency information guide.
Functions provided by legislation
Service NSW’s authorising legislation is the Service NSW (One-stop Access to Government Services) Act 2013, which came into effect on 21 June 2013.
Section 4(c) of the Service NSW (One-stop Access to Government Services) Act 2013 outlines that Service NSW can be directed by the Minister to perform any other functions relating to the delivery of government services to the people of New South Wales. This covers additional functions that include but are not limited to:
- issuing vouchers, grants and rebates to stimulate the economy and assist in the recovery from events such as natural disasters
- delivering the Tell Your Story Once project to make it easier for people who have been impacted by a disaster in in NSW to apply for and access government and non-government support and assistance
- provide small businesses with access to independent business advice, events and online resources through Business Connect
- enabling people to use their MyServiceNSW account or credentials to streamline accessing other NSW Government services, prove their identity and receive notifications about services from their Account
- undertaking fraud prevention, detection and investigative activities to assess the integrity of personal information provided by individuals in relation to MyServiceNSW accounts and applications for grants, rebates or other benefits administered by Service NSW
- delivering a digital proof of identity pilot.
- To request further details about current Ministerial Directions, please contact email@example.com.
Service NSW offers a broad range of NSW Government services and transactions through:
- an easy-to-use, accessible, customer friendly website
- service centres with extended opening hours
- a telephone service (13 77 88) answered by Service NSW staff.
Currently Service NSW provides transactions on behalf of Government agencies including:
- Fair Trading
- SafeWork NSW
- NSW Registry of Births, Deaths and Marriages
- Housing NSW
- Revenue NSW
- Ageing, Disability and Home Care
- Office of Environment and Heritage
- Department of Primary Industries
- Transport for NSW
- Liquor and Gaming NSW
- NSW Trustee & Guardian
- Department of Education
- NSW National Parks and Wildlife Service
- NSW Health
- NSW Treasury
- NSW Police
Some of the transactions include:
- Births, relationships and deaths
- Boating, fishing and outdoors
- Business, industries and employment
- Concessions, rebates and assistance
- Driving and transport
- Emergencies and natural disasters
- Employment and industries
- Environment, parks and wildlife
- Health and care
- Housing and property
- Legal and Police services
Service NSW also offers services through its MyService NSW Account mobile app which provides a common platform for citizens to perform typical transactions such as renewing and checking licenses and registrations, claiming vouchers and rebates, as well as accessing personalised information such as demerit points and toll expenditure.
More services are regularly being added to build Service NSW into a complete, one-stop government service delivery model.
For information on fees and charges Service NSW may impose regarding the above transactions please contact Service NSW on 13 77 88 as fees are subject to change.
Our Code of Ethics
As a service provider for the NSW Government, individuals across NSW are affected by how we perform our functions. Service NSW employees are required to act in the public interest and are bound by the values described in our Code of Conduct, being Passion, Teamwork, Accountability, Service, Integrity and Trust.
How the public can participate in what we do
Service NSW has a number of ways you can participate in what we do. We welcome your feedback, questions, comments and complaints. We keep customers at the heart of what we do, and use your feedback to improve what we do and how we do it.
We also seek public participation and feedback about our functions and policy development through formal feedback channels such as the NSW Government Have Your Say portal.
Subscription to our content
Service NSW advertises and promotes public participation in current policy development, review, and reform processes. The best way to participate is to subscribe to our mailing lists, newsletters, and social media pages, available at the following links:
Service NSW is committed to providing excellent customer service and every attempt is made to deal with complaints on the spot, however, if you would like to submit a complaint, we would like to assure you that we will act in an open and honest manner, and within clear timeframes. For more information about our complaints handling process, please see our Customer complaints page.
Service NSW keep records associated with our core functions. These involve regulation and the provision of services. While performing our core functions, Service NSW may collect, store, use and disclose personal information of members of the public in accordance with the Privacy and Personal Information Protection Act 1998 (PPIP Act).
What kinds of government information does Service NSW hold
We hold a range of information including:
- financial records: journals, reconciliation, bank statements, treasury management system computer reports, budgets, invoices, and purchase orders.
- administration records: relating to the rental of premises, insurances, purchasing, business continuity requirements, disaster recovery and delegations register.
- customer records: records of customers’ interactions with Service NSW including through its physical service centres, call centres, and digital services.
- service partnership agreements: legal agreements setting out the terms and conditions of agencies’ arrangements with Service NSW.
- personnel records: employee remuneration, performance appraisal and recruitment records.
- executive records: executive and other committee minutes and correspondence.
- human resource management records: relating to human resource management policies and practices.
- information technology records: relating to information technology planning, acquisition, installation, and disposal; including user and system manuals.
- communication records: media releases, news clippings, marketing collateral, brand guidelines, presentations.
- policy and procedural manuals: documenting Service NSW policies and operational procedures.
- performance dashboard and statistics.
What kind of government information is made available to the public and how
We make information available under the GIPA Act in four ways:
- open access information
- proactive release of information
- informal access
- formal access.
Open access information
Our website includes a large volume of material that covers many policies and projects. We try to release as much government information as possible, through our website or by request to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Under the GIPA Act, we are required to make certain information available, free of charge. This is called "open access information" and includes:
- annual reports
- register of government contracts
- policy documents
- media releases
- tabled documents in NSW Parliament
- Service NSW Agency Information Guide
- Code of conduct
- disclosure log of access applications
- Our disclosure log is a record of information that Service NSW has released under the GIPA Act that we consider may be of interest to other members of the public. The Disclosure Log provides details about how information released through GIPA can be accessed. This log is regularly updated as Service NSW releases additional information under the GIPA Act.
If you have difficulties locating information or you feel certain information should be made available free of charge, please contact our GIPA Hotline on 02 9219 3700 or email email@example.com.
Proactive release and Open Data Policy
Service NSW’s program for the proactive release of information involves analysing data collected on requests for information under the GIPA Act over the financial year, considering the kinds of government information held by the agency that may be suitable for proactive release, and asking divisions and branches to consider information relevant to the agency that we want the public to know about.
Our open data practice is aligned to the NSW Government Open Data Policy and seeks to make appropriate government data available to industry and the community. Open data supports the open government principles of transparency, participation, collaboration and innovation. It augments the proactive release of information required under the GIPA Act. A range of open Service NSW data is available via Data NSW website.
Service NSW also proactively publishes a range of information and statistics on its performance dashboard.
Information available on informal request
The GIPA Act authorises the release of government information in response to an informal request unless there is an overriding public interest against disclosure (section 8 of the GIPA Act).
If we haven't freely published the information you seek as “open access information”, we may be able to release it to you without the need for a formal access application. We generally provide the following types of information in response to an informal request:
- your personal information
- copies of correspondence sent to us by you
- applications and supporting documents sent to us by you
- customer transaction database notes that contain only personal information about you
- documents that may have already been made public in some other way
- information that would not raise any potential public interest or privacy concerns.
This form of release does not require a fee or an application form. Information may be released with deletions, released subject to reasonable conditions, or released in a preferred form. We may impose conditions on the use or disclosure of information that is released in response to an informal request.
If you would like to make an informal request for information, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Formal access applications for access to Service NSW information
If the information you are looking for is not published by us or available by informal request, you may wish to make a formal access application in writing under the GIPA Act. Access applications are subject to application fees and processing charges. We will not release information if there is an overriding public interest against its disclosure.
Your access application must include the following five things:
- be in writing and addressed to the agency
- clearly state you are requesting information under the GIPA Act
- include the $30 application fee
- include your name, an email address or return postal address for correspondence in connection with an application
- include such information as is reasonably necessary to enable the government information applied for to be identified.
If your application does not meet the above requirements, it will be invalid and the application will not be processed. However, in order to help you make a valid application, we will contact you to provide advice and assistance.
You can make a formal application by completing a GIPA application form available on the Service NSW website here: https://www.service.nsw.gov.au/accessing-information#how-can-i-access-information-held-by-service-nsw, or by visiting one of our service centres and submitting your application in person.
Requests for personal information can also be made under the PPIP Act.
Formal access application fees and charges
Apart from the $30 application fee, the GIPA Act allows Service NSW to impose a charge of $30 per hour to process an application. The application fee counts towards the first hour of processing.
In processing a formal access application, Service NSW is required to ensure that it is dealt with efficiently and provides access to information requested at the lowest reasonable cost.
A 50% discount in processing charges will apply if an applicant demonstrates they fall within any of the following categories:
- a member of the public suffering financial hardship
- the information applied for is of special benefit to the public
- the holder of a current Pensioner Concession Card
- full-time students
- non-profit organisations.
Please note that the 50% discount applies only to processing charges and not to the $30 application fee.
If applying for your own personal information, Service NSW cannot charge for the first 20 hours of processing.
Decision making process
Under the GIPA Act, Service NSW must disclose or release information unless there is an overriding public interest against disclosure. Fundamental to our obligation to release information is acknowledging the overarching presumption in favour of disclosure of information.
This is the starting point for all decisions we make regarding information access i.e. whether this is via:
- open access information
- proactive release of information
- informal access
- formal access.
Unless there is an overriding public interest against disclosure, we must provide the information. There are some limited exceptions to this general rule, for example where dealing with an application would constitute a significant and unreasonable diversion of an agency’s resources.
Service NSW will provide all access applications with a written explanation of the decisions we make under the GIPA Act.
Information held by other NSW Government agencies
Service NSW provides services and transactions on behalf of other Government agencies. Information relating to these transactions is often held by the relevant agency and Service NSW does not hold this information.
To access this information, you’ll need to contact the relevant agency directly. More information about accessing information from other agencies is available here.
More information held by Transport for NSW
Service NSW does not hold information on behalf of Transport for NSW. Common types of information held by Transport for NSW include:
- Registration information for vehicles, trailers, caravans, motorcycles and boats
- Notice of disposal information
- Drivers licence information, driving record or driver licence photo.
More information about accessing information from Transport for NSW is available here.
Information which may not be disclosed
An access application cannot be made for information specifically excluded under Schedule 1 and 2 of the GIPA ACT, such as information that relates to the complaint handling and investigative functions conferred by or under any other Act, or Cabinet or Executive Council information. That information is “excluded information” under the GIPA Act.
For some categories of information, while an access application may be made there is a presumption against release. The list of categories is set out at Schedule 1 of the GIPA Act.
You can find out more about your right to information by visiting the Information Privacy Commissioner NSW website.
Our Information Access Team can be contacted using the details below:
02 9219 3700 (Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm, excluding public holidays)
Service NSW GIPA Team
2-24 Rawson Place
SYDNEY NSW 2000
For other Service NSW enquiries that are not related to information access, please call us on 13 77 88. To visit us in person, use our service centre locator. Or write to us at:
GPO Box 7057
SYDNEY NSW 2001