The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) is the second largest federal agency, employing more than 320,000 individuals across the country. VA’s human resources (HR) workforce and systems process thousands of transactions related to employees’ compensation, benefits and position. VA needed to transform its largely paper-based and manual HR system to one that functioned online and was fully interoperable with other platforms.
- Information Technology Governance
- Operations and Maintenance
- Help Desk Support
- Program Management
- Strategic Planning
- Organizational Change Management
Aptive provided transition support as VA replaced multiple, disparate HR functions with a unified shared services system integrated with other federal agencies, particularly with the Office of Personnel Management. A central focus of this effort was the transition to a new, modernized HR information technology solution. VA required effective program management; state-of-the-art tools and training; smart information technology governance; rapid help desk support; and change management activities to help employees adopt new ways of doing business.
Aptive assisted this effort in the following areas:
Strategic planning – Effective strategic planning and implementation support equipped all audiences with the vision and long-term plans to make the project a success. Our strategic plan featured a VA-wide vision and audience-focused roadmap to guide the planning and transition of new technologies. The roadmap aligned to VA’s goals and strategic priorities and documented recommendations for governance of new capabilities. We helped HR LOB reorganize and restructure its activities based on our vision for the future and ensured that funding, tools and training were effectively deployed to achieve the goals.
IT Governance – Aptive helped establish a governance council to manage the disparate IT systems, which comprised 10 different components and more than 20 different stakeholders. We established the governance structure after convening stakeholders under a common agenda and standard operating procedures. We outlined the procedures controlled by each stakeholder and the permissible system changes. We set up quarterly meetings where system owners could meet to resolve any issues and plan for future system upgrades.
Program Management Support – Our integrated program management plan, based on a gap analysis, analytics review, data analysis and other research, accounted for budget, schedules, quality, resource management and risk management. Playbooks guided individual lines of effort without straying from the master plan.
Operations and Maintenance/Help Desk Support – Aptive reduced a backlog of help desk tickets through effective incident and event management, fulfillment of requests, problem definition and management, and end user self service. We unified responses through scripts, decision trees and documentation.
- Enhanced Self Service – With automated responses and a self-service knowledge base Aptive reduced the helpdesk backlog in half enabling project personnel to work on higher order tasks.
- Agile Engineering and Continuous Integration – We completed technology implementations impacting hundreds of hiring managers and thousands of end users, reduced paper processes, cutting time to hire and enhancing system interoperability.
- Better understanding – Surveys showed improved customer satisfaction and greater understanding of workflows and systems, proving the effectiveness of change management strategies, project management, training and communications.