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To better support agencies in reporting for the new Specialist Homelessness Services (SHS) collection, the Specialist Homelessness Information Platform (SHIP) client management system replaced the SAAP Management and Reporting Tool (SMART) from 1 July 2011.

SHIP is free to any agency that wishes to use it, and allows you to record client information including case notes, case plans and client goals. You can also compile and extract data to help manage your agency, your clients and your clients’ needs. SHIP will help make sure that your client data continues to be secure and confidential.

Keeping data secure and confidential 

SHIP is a more secure system than its predecessor SMART—information is stored, audited, and backed-up in a controlled and centralised way (rather than being up backed up on individual agencies’ computers).

SHIP is a web-based system hosted by Infoxchange Australia that offers a secure web link for every session while it is being used by agencies. All SHIP infrastructure hosted by Infoxchange will also be maintained in a secure environment which meets or exceeds the Australian Government Protective Security Protocols. SHIP will not be hosted in a public ‘cloud’ environment such as those provided by Microsoft, Google or Amazon.

SHIP makes sure all client data remains secure and confidential by using:

  • password protection
  • strict access restrictions appropriate for different agency staff
  • comprehensive backup and disaster recovery facilities
  • a time-out system if access is inactive for a period of time
  • 24-hour security to protect servers as well as electronic surveillance, photo IDs to authorise entry, and battery and generator backup to mains power.

Agency managers will also be able to run an audit to see who has accessed client records and when.


SHIP features:

  • Highly intuitive user interface (most pages less than 2 clicks away)
  • Fuzzy name search to make it easier to find clients (for example, searching for ‘John’ will also provide results for different spellings such as‘Jon’)
  • Client consent to pass information to the AIHW
  • The ability to attach documents to client files (limit of 2MB per document)
  • Offsite hosting, so agencies will no longer be responsible for managing computer systems, data security, data backup and disaster recovery.

SHIP also conforms to government A-rating standards for usability and screen-based applications (the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines version 2.0).

Using your own client management system  

If you’re developing or using your own client management system, you will need to make sure it’s compliant for collecting and sending data to the AIHW for the new SHS collection.  Contact the AIHW for more details.