Services Australia seeks new Digital Mailroom partner

A major tender for scanning services for Medicare, Centrelink and Child Support has been issued by Services Australia, following the decision by Australia Post to dump its document scanning service Decipha.

The tender calls for mail opening, preparation and scanning as well as document retention and secure destruction for all incoming mail. The tender does not include any provision for OCR or Intelligent Document Processing (IDP).

Around 80% of correspondence that is received is structured and/or barcoded through Smart PDF forms.

There are currently 35,000 to 50,000 pages per day of mail received by post, although volumes have dropped steadily over the past 4 years.

The total of scanned pages in 2020 was almost 17 million whereas this steadily reduced to under 8 million pages in 2023.

There are also currently pockets of mail that are still scanned internally, which the Agency is looking to transition.

The new scanning supplier will be expected to ramp up for a launch in December 2024 with an Australian hosted service that delivers scanned pages as an 8-bit grey scale 300 dpi image. Services Australia says it may have a future requirement to scan in colour.

The tender was previously held by Decipha, first established as the e-Letters business, which Australia Post announced last year it was planning to wind down by June 2025. Decipha directly employed 321 Australians across the country.