Industry Advocate, South Australia
In 2013 South Australia was the first State to establish an Industry Advocate (IA) with Ian Nightingale appointed to the role. With many years in both the private sector, and as CEO of leading State Government Agencies, Ian brings a wealth of experience and knowledge of the challenges facing businesses including those in the regions.
Ian provides independent advice to the Government on how government expenditure could be used to maximise the economic benefit to the State.
In this role, Ian’s focus is to further the objectives of the South Australian Industry Participation Policy (SAIPP) and to build the capability and capacity of businesses based in South Australia to participate in government contracts.
In 2016 the Industry Advocate assumed responsibility for the Aboriginal Economic Participation Initiative. In August 2017 the SAIPP was revised to incorporate the Aboriginal Economic Participation objectives into a single comprehensive framework with an over-riding objective of increasing the number and diversity of Aboriginal businesses successfully winning State Government procurement contracts either directly or indirectly. South Australia is the first State to contract Supply Nation to administer a State focused online directory of Aboriginal business, Aboriginal Business Connect.
The Office of the Industry Advocate has oversight of the industry participation commitments associated with $8.3 billion of government projects covering building construction, civil construction, goods and services, ICT, medical devices, manufacturing and distribution, professional and technical services and Aboriginal businesses. Ian has been instrumental in State Government Agencies setting Aboriginal procurement targets as a percentage of their Agency spend. The SAIPP also cuts red tape through direct negotiation with Aboriginal business for contracts up to $200k in value.
The success of the role has also been recognised at local and national level with the State government enacting the Industry Advocate Act in January 2018.