Digital services assessment framework


Final | January 2022 | v1.0.0 | OFFICIAL - Public | QGCDG

1 Introduction

The Digital services policy sets out best-practice principles for Queensland Government departments to design and deliver public-facing digital services that are easy to find, clear, secure, and simple for users.

This Digital services assessment framework (DSAF) provides agencies with guidance for assessing and demonstrating compliance of their digital services with the Queensland Government Digital service standard (Standard), mandated by the Digital services policy.

2 Which services need to be assessed

All new or redeveloped high-volume transactional digital services within the scope of the Digital services policy must be assessed to demonstrate compliance with the Standard.

3 How services are assessed

3.1 Self-assessment

Departments are responsible for assessing compliance of their digital services with the Standard. It is recommended the assessment is carried out by person/s independent of the service being assessed who have the requisite expertise to assess performance against the standard. This expertise should span service design/user research, digital technology and agile delivery.

The self-assessment approach aims to:

  • encourage peer-to-peer and organisational learning to improve the standard of digital service delivery, and
  • provide flexibility for agencies to assess and demonstrate compliance within the context of their available resources and commensurate with the scale and nature of the digital service.

3.2 Assessment process

If following the recommended agile service design and delivery process, an assessment against the criteria in the Standard should occur at the following three checkpoints in the process:

  • Alpha: at the end of the Alpha stage, compliance with criteria 1-3 and progress towards the other criteria in the Standard needs to be assessed.
  • Beta: before the agency publicly releases the digital service as a beta, the service needs to be assessed and comply with all 13 criteria in the Standard. The service will be released with a Beta branding.
  • Live: at the end of the Beta stage, before you move to the Live stage, the service needs to demonstrate it complies with all 13 criteria in the Standard, including remediation of any user and technical problems identified during the Beta release. When the service completes the Live assessment, the Beta branding will be removed.

The Digital services self-assessment checklist aligns with three checkpoints in the agile service design and delivery process.

If not following the recommended agile service design and delivery process, departments should complete an assessment to ensure compliance prior to public release of the digital service.

Departments should also consider their obligations under the Resetting the ICT dial guideline.

3.3 Non-compliance with the Standard

A service should not progress beyond a checkpoint until all applicable criteria for that checkpoint are met.

Advice on how to remediate anticipated or actual non-compliance with the Standard can be sought from the broader Queensland Government digital service community directly, Queensland Online or for exceptions liaison with Queensland Government Enterprise Architecture (QGEA).

4 Approvals and reporting

4.1    Assessment approvals

A completed Digital service assessment checklist should be:

  • endorsed by an agency’s Chief Information Officer or other accountable officer prior to public release of the new or significantly redeveloped high-volume digital service
  • easily accessible if required to demonstrate compliance with the Standard.

4.2.   Compliance reporting

To monitor policy adoption and compliance with the Standard, the Queensland Government Customer and Digital Group (QGCDG) will, at unspecified intervals, request agencies to demonstrate compliance with the Standard by submitting completed self-assessment checklists or other relevant evidence. In accordance with the transition plan for the policy, compliance reporting requests will initially pertain to high volume digital services.

The purpose of compliance reporting is to understand the extent of adoption and compliance with the Standard and identify assistance and support required to build capability to comply.


The Queensland Government acknowledges the Digital Transformation Agency for material that has been adapted from the Australian Government’s Digital Transformation Agency Digital Service Standard.

Last Reviewed: 09 February 2022