NSW-based iTnews Benchmark Awards finalists and winners celebrate

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NSW-based iTnews Benchmark Awards finalists and winners celebrate
Image credit: Steven McDonald/LinkedIn.

Including Project of the Year winner, the Commonwealth Bank of Australia.

Some of the standout Australian IT projects during the last year-and-half were recognised at an iTnews Benchmark Awards lunch in Sydney yesterday.

The event followed the announcement of the 2021 iTnews Benchmark Awards winners in an online presentation published last week.

While the pandemic prevented iTnews from holding our annual awards dinner this year, some NSW-based finalists and winners came together yesterday to celebrate their achievements.

They included representatives from AMP, the Digital Transformation Agency, Coates Hire, Commonwealth Bank of Australia, eHealth NSW, HCF, the NSW Department of Customer Service - Spatial Services, Randwick Council and Service NSW.

Service NSW representatives accepted the State Government trophy for COVID Safe Check-in, the first state government-developed digital check-in capability. ACT Health was a dual winner of this award for its check-in app, which it calls Check In CBR.

CBA representatives accepted the Finance and Project of the Year trophies for the bank’s IT Risk Stability Score. The project is intended to improve how the bank manages the health of its IT services.

The IT Risk Stability Score uses a CBA-developed machine learning model to predict the likelihood of high priority incidents across the bank’s technology estate. The model ingests thousands of service management data points and draws statistical relationships to incidents over the previous three years.

This has enabled CBA system owners to “deep dive into IT health control data and system processes to identify opportunities for remediation”, according to the bank’s award submission.

That submission, from late 2020, reported a reduction in the time taken to resolve IT incidents compared with the same time the previous year.

It also stated that the project enabled a “more objective, intelligent methodology and culture in addressing system issues rather than a subjective, opinion-based view of IT health.”

“The Commonwealth Bank is humbled by this award,” CBA's executive manager for emerging technology Chris Connor said.

“I personally find it inspiring when I consider the number of people that have helped drive this innovation initiative to fruition inside the organisation.

“While this project has been about the technology, it has also been about the people that have helped us solve puzzles along the way to bring this innovation to reality. We are grateful for that help and are excited to share this victory with them, too.

“This project is yet another example of the power of artificial intelligence and its ability to help the Commonwealth Bank build tomorrow’s bank today for its customers,” Connor said.

The 2021 iTnews Benchmark Awards winners and finalists

Here is the full list of all the award winning and highly commended projects:

Local Government

  • Parkes Recycled Water Scheme - End User Control System (Parkes Shire Council)

State Government

  • Check In CBR (ACT Health)
  • COVID Safe Check-in (Service NSW)

Federal Government

  • Service improvements to myGov (Services Australia)

The amica project, involving National Legal Aid & Legal Services Commission of South Australia, was Highly Commended. 


  • IT Risk Stability Score (Commonwealth Bank of Australia)

The launch of the Australian Consumer Data Right by Regional Australia Bank was Highly Commended.


  • Real-time simulation experiences (Swinburne Online) 

Industrial & Primary Production

  • Smart irrigation initiative (SA Water)


  • Critical Health Resource Information System (Australian Government Department of Health; Australian and New Zealand Intensive Care Society; Ambulance Victoria)

The NSW Health implementation of the state-wide, cloud-based incident management system ims+ by eHealth NSW was Highly Commended.

Mass Market

  • Order Management Project (Super Retail Group)

Project of the Year

  • IT Risk Stability Score (Commonwealth Bank of Australia)
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