U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs
portfolio management, administrative, fiscal management, schedule management, risk management,
Veterans Affairs (VA) Financial Services Center (FSC) provides financial services to VA and Other Government Agencies (OGA). The “Program Management and Support Services” (PMSS) contract is the single Program Management and Enterprise Support contract for managing 100+ applications spanning across 36 projects. These projects span multiple VA organizations such as the Veterans Health Administration (VHA), Veterans Benefits Administration (VBA), National Cemetery Administration (NCA), and the Office of Information and Technology (OIT). All of these projects and applications are organized under 10 programs. Each program has various stakeholders, expectations, and different project delivery timelines. We develop and provide portfolio support data and metrics with a centralized DevSecOps pipeline across the FSC enterprise that is verified and validated against the standards and policies within the VA. We are also responsible to work with the development and deployment contractors and ensure the compliance and adherence to the Veteran-focused Integration Process (VIP) policy guidelines.
As part of the larger team, Cognizance provides program management support services to 36 concurrent projects as well as support for potential new business opportunities for the entrepreneurial FSC organization. Our responsibilities include program/project management, portfolio management, general administration, fiscal management, schedule management, risk management, and support for applicable policies and regulations including VIP Software Development Life Cycle (SDLC) support. Our core services include the following:
• Strategic planning, communications, and integrating schedules across the portfolio of projects.
• Oversight, risk management, and reporting for each project and summarizing status at the portfolio level.
• Administrative and fiscal management, as well as support for overall business processes.
• Developing and managing applicable policies and regulations, including the promotion and assistance to implement agile development procedures.
• Working across programs to gain stakeholder buy-in and ensure two-way communications with business and project owners, developer teams, and IT & security staff.
VA – PMSS – PEGA Center of Excellence (CoE)
As part of this effort, FSC tasked our team to operationalize and support the PEGA Center of Excellence (CoE), with a specific focus on development competencies. We provided resources and technical support for the PEGA CoE that included technical oversight covering areas such as business analysis, SCRUM, functional testing and configuration management.
We were able to provide personnel that collectively held several PEGA business analyst certifications and helped by providing expert support to the Government; setting PEGA technology standards while tracking and enforcing compliance; developing and maintaining standards across all FSC products, programs and projects; identify and provide training as required; and act as the liaison to PEGA as a Government’s representative.
VA – PMSS – Agile Center of Excellence (CoE)
As part of this effort, FSC tasked our team to support the Agile Center of Excellence (CoE), with a specific focus on auditing the team’s use of Agile methodology practices using the PM playbook, the VA VIP Guide, and industry best practices as the standard. As part of the CoE support, we documented the findings and delivered them as part of the report. Additionally, we applied best practices, leveraging lessons learned, and utilize findings from the audits to improve the PM playbook and keep it current.
We were also responsible for coaching and mentoring project teams to allow for scaling of Agile methodologies at the FSC PMO as and when requested while being responsible for the entire Agile training program that included a formal training plan and a training package being led by a certified scrum trainer (CST). The training program included providing three on-site training sessions per year for no more than 30 participants and no more than 30 hours per training. Additionally, we were responsible in assisting the Government with planning, implementing SAFe framework and Agile Release trains (ART) for all FSC Programs, including FMBT.
CTP develops information technologies that support specific scientific and business analyses associated with its regulatory and research mission. This is a suite of information technologies collectively referred to as “Advanced Information Retrieval Research System,” or “AIRRS”.