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In Australia, the statistics on domestic violence are alarming, revealing a significant impact on the population. Over one in four women (27%) have experienced family and domestic violence since the age of 15, reflecting the widespread nature of this issue. Emotional abuse and sexual harassment also show significant prevalence, with a decrease in reported rates over recent years, indicating changes in societal behaviour and awareness. The rates of violence experienced by men and women since the age of 15 highlight the different dynamics in victimisation, with a considerable percentage of both genders affected by violence. Emotional abuse by a cohabiting partner decreased from 4.8% in 2016 to 3.9% in 2021-22 for women, and from 4.2% to 2.5% for men over the same period. This data underscores the necessity for comprehensive strategies and solutions to address and mitigate domestic violence in Australia.

In response to this pressing issue, the Department of Human Services in South Australia and Canon Business Services Australia have taken a significant leap forward by developing the Domestic Violence Management Solution (DVMS). This innovative digital platform aims to support victims of domestic violence by providing critical resources and support through advanced technology. The introduction of the DVMS represents a major advancement in the use of digital tools for social welfare and highlights the potential for technological solutions to contribute effectively to resolving critical social issues. By offering immediate aid and streamlining the management of domestic violence cases, this initiative not only assists those in immediate need but also paves the way for future developments in the integration of technology in social services, signifying a major step forward in the battle against domestic violence.

Recognition and the road ahead


Benchmark awards

Achieving finalist status in the IT News Media awards, the DVMS project is celebrated for its innovative use of technology and its focus on human needs. This recognition underlines the impact of carefully applied technology in profoundly influencing lives, often beyond initial expectations. It showcases the project's dual commitment to technical sophistication and enhancing societal welfare, illustrating the powerful intersection of technology and empathy in creating meaningful change.

Initiating change: A new approach to support

At the heart of the DVMS emerged a solid foundation of technologies implemented by CBS, replacing outdated, paper-based systems with a seamless, secure digital ecosystem. By integrating Microsoft Dynamics 365, Azure, and Power BI, the initiative has not only streamlined case management but also ensured a holistic view of both victims and offenders, significantly enhancing service delivery and protection measures.

Prior challenges included unstructured data sharing, which lacked traceability, and the use of manual processes that were not only time-consuming but also heightened security risks. By digitising the referral and support processes, DVMS ensures a seamless, secure, and efficient mechanism for aiding victims, revolutionising case management and significantly boosting service delivery and protection efforts.

In this initiative, CBS employed Microsoft modernisation toolscloud-based technologies, web-based portals, and advanced case management systems to ensure that support is swift, secure, and effective. The project's success, highlighted by its award recognition, serves as a compelling case study of how targeted technological solutions can make a substantial difference in social welfare practices.

Impact and improvements of DVMS

By automating data entry, referrals, and follow-ups, which were previously managed through manual, paper-based processes, the DVMS has likely led to a substantial reduction in case handling time. This efficiency enables service providers to respond more swiftly to victims' needs, reducing the time from initial reporting to intervention. Additionally, the digital transformation has allowed agencies to handle a greater volume of cases by minimizing time spent on administrative tasks, thereby increasing the overall capacity to support more victims.

Furthermore, the reduction in administrative overhead has freed up social workers, police, and other stakeholders to spend more time directly supporting victims, enhancing the quality of care and support provided. This shift potentially contributes to a decrease in the number of people at risk or suffering from ongoing violence, as interventions become more timely and effective. The DVMS has also improved data accuracy and security, moving from unstructured, paper-based systems to a centralized digital platform, ensuring secure, accurate, and accessible data for authorized personnel. Enhanced collaboration and information sharing among various agencies and stakeholders have led to more coordinated and effective support for victims. Lastly, the platform's improved reporting capabilities allow for better tracking and analysis of case outcomes, facilitating continuous improvement in services and strategies to combat family and domestic violence.


Learn more

Read the full case study on the Family Safety Portal for Department of Human Services SA.

Read it

The scalable nature of digital solutions

Cloud-based technologies, exemplified by the DVMS project, demonstrate how scalable and flexible solutions are key in innovatively addressing complex societal challenges. This transformation not only advances digital strategies but also establishes a blueprint for leveraging technology across sectors, from healthcare to environmental protection. It underscores the capacity of digital innovation to adapt and expand, meeting diverse needs and setting a benchmark for how technology can be applied with sensitivity and efficiency in solving global issues.

Innovative solutions for urgent challenges

The transformative power of technology extends beyond individual projects like DVMS, we see its influence in areas like smart cities, where IoT devices optimise energy use and traffic flow, enhancing sustainability and living standards. Financial technology, or FinTech, revolutionises banking and investment, making financial services more accessible and tailored to individual needs. In agriculture, precision farming employs drones and satellite imagery to increase crop yields and reduce waste, demonstrating technology's pivotal role in addressing food security. These examples illustrate technology's vast potential to innovate and solve critical issues across different sectors.

Conclusion

Receiving recognition at the IT News Media awards, the DVMS project transcends a mere accolade, embodying hope for communities globally. This honour highlights technology's role in fostering safer, more supportive spaces, and underscores the vast potential at the nexus of technology and social good for driving societal change.

This initiative not only showcases a successful case of digital transformation in social support systems but also serves as an inspiring model for leveraging technology to tackle complex societal issues. As we continue to navigate the challenges and opportunities presented by technological advancements, the story of the DVMS project stands as a testament to what can be achieved when innovation is aligned with compassion and a deep understanding of the human condition.

To discuss how CBS can help your organisation build an innovative solution, get in touch with us today.

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