Social Innovation Council

The Social Innovation Council (SIC) is a strategic partnership between the NSW Government and the Forum of Non-Government Agencies (FONGA).


The SIC aims to accelerate innovation in the way human services are designed, delivered and measured, and to improve human services outcomes by:

  • promoting the use of technology and collaborative work practices to optimise service delivery
  • improving the quality and accessibility of human services data for government and NGOs
  • driving strategic engagement of the NGO sector
  • making it easier for NGOs and government to do business together
Council members

The SIC is co-chaired by the Minister for Finance, Services and Property and the President of FONGA. Membership includes representatives from:

  • Department of Family and Community Services
  • NSW Ministry of Health
  • Department of Justice
  • Department of Education
  • Department of Premier and Cabinet
  • NSW Treasury
  • Department of Finance, Services and Innovation
  • Five representatives appointed by the FONGA, including an Aboriginal peak body representative and representatives from rural and regional NSW.




New NGO Capability Building Tool

The NGO Capability Building Tool allows organisations delivering human services to self-assess against 10 capabilities related to customer centred service delivery. It includes links to free resources and training for self-directed learning.

The tool is free, voluntary and confidential.

Organisations can use their results to promote their current capabilities and to encourage service improvement and innovation. As the numbers of users increases, organisations will also be able compare their results to those of the sector overall. All results are confidential.

The NGO Capability Building Tool was developed following feedback on the NGO Benchmarking Model. The Tool has been co-designed by NGOs and the NSW Government to help NGOs deliver high quality programs and drive innovation across the human services sector

Find out more about the NGO Capability Building Tool.


The Human Services Outcomes Framework

The Human Services Outcomes Framework is a tool to support NSW Government agencies and non-government organisations (NGOs) to embed outcomes measurement into human services planning, delivery and evaluation. It promotes collaboration and consistent social outcomes reporting across the human services sectors.

NSW Human Services Agreement 

The NSW Procurement Board published the NSW Human Services Agreement on 1 May 2017. It is the prescribed template for procuring human services from non-government organisations in NSW. This is first time NSW human services agencies have used a whole of government standard agreement. The Human Services Agreement will:

  • make it easier for NGOs to do business with NSW government agencies by streamlining contracting arrangements
  • promote consistency across NSW government

  • be simple, user friendly and fit for purpose

  • reflect the partnership needed by NGOs and agencies to deliver better human services outcomes.

The Agreement has two parts:

Standard Terms – Agreement for Funding of Services

Schedule – Agreement for Funding of Services

Please see Procurement Board Direction 2017-01 for more information.

Resources to help NGOs transition to the Human Services Agreement

A guide to the Human Services Agreement is available for NGOs. The guide includes checklists and factsheets as well as resources about subcontracting under the Human Services Agreement.

Human-Centred Design Online Training

The human-centred design online training workshop is a free resource designed to build capability across the non-government sector.

Human-centred design is widely regarded as a best practice approach to designing human services that deliver meaningful outcomes. This training explores the core principles and methodology of the human-centred design process, and allows NGOs to put what they learn into practice with guided activities and tools.

The training complements the NGO Capability Building Tool and the Human Services Outcomes Framework, which help NGOs adapt to the new world of outcomes-based contracting. The training is intended to drive a cycle of continuous improvement in customer-centred service design and delivery.

If you are looking for an opportunity to rethink how you design and deliver services in a surprisingly simple and inexpensive way, we encourage you to watch the training below!

You can also access this training by clicking here.

High Performance Framework 

The new high performance framework aims to transform the way human services are assessed, managed and delivered in NSW.

Guidelines for Engagement with NSW Human Services NGOs

The Guidelines for Engagement with NSW Human Services NGOs set out the overarching values and principles needed to build stronger relationships between NGOs and government agencies. By following these guidelines agencies can work more closely with NGOs to help them deliver better human services to the people of NSW.

Find out more

Human Services Data Hub

This business intelligence tool provides a single view of human services commissioned by NSW Government agencies. It enables aggregated data to be visualised, analysed and cross-referenced to other datasets. The data is informing many of the Social Innovation Council’s initiatives.

NGO Registration Scheme 

This initiative reduces the need for NGOs to provide the same information to government agencies multiple times. The scheme is voluntary and open to all NGOs who are delivering, or are seeking to deliver, human services on behalf of the NSW Government. 

Find out more

Public-private partnerships

The Social Innovation Council is exploring partnerships that unlock the latent potential of human services data sharing, aligned to the NSW Government’s ICT Strategy.

The Social Innovation Council has identified an example of innovative government services delivery so we can promote alternative approaches that achieve meaningful social outcomes.

An example of this

More information

If you have questions or would like more information on the activities of the Social Innovation Council, please contact or

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