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Engility's Veterans Benefits Managment System Team


Gold Stevie Award Winner 2012, Click to Enter The 2014 American Business Awards

Company: Engility, Chantilly, VA
Company Description: Engility is a pure-play government services contractor providing highly skilled personnel wherever, whenever they are needed in a cost-effective manner. Headquartered in Chantilly, Virginia, Engility is a leading provider of specialized technical consulting, program and business support services, engineering and technology lifecycle support, information technology modernization and sust
Nomination Category: Product Management Categories
Nomination Sub Category: Product Management Department/Team of the Year

Nomination Title: Engility's Veterans Benefits Managment System Team

Tell the story about what this nominated department or team has achieved since January 1 2014 (up to 650 words). Focus on specific accomplishments, and relate these accomplishments to past performance or industry norms.

The Veterans Benefits Affairs’ (VBA) benefits claims process depended on paper documents. Given the sheer volume of claims, this dependence on paper was inefficient and costly, and put sensitive veteran data at risk. There was also added stress on the paperbound system because of an increase in the number and complexity of claims. VBA was not well positioned for timely claims processing in part because of the time lost to the movement, storage, and compilation of paper documents.

The Veterans Benefits Management System (VBMS) is multi-year project to transition the VBA from paper-intensive claims to a paperless-based environment, thus allowing migration to electronic claims processing through technology solutions. On VBMS, Engility was contracted to improve service to veterans through project management, systems engineering, agile software development, configuration management, requirements management, integration with VA and non-VA systems, interfaces to VA and non-VA systems, Web portal development, services development, and testing. Engility automated processing steps modernized applications, resulting in a more standardized, tracked, and efficient claims processing solution.

VBMS is reducing the average time for veteran benefits claim processing, reducing the number of claims in backlog, and automating claims tracking. The following comments were sent to the VBMS team and partners on September 29, 2014, from Allison Hickey, Under Secretary for Benefits in the Department of Veterans Affairs. “As of today, you have cut the claims backlog to 245,000 from 611,000 claims. That's a 60% reduction in the backlog of veterans, their families, and survivors waiting for a claim decision from us! You have completed 150,000 more claims this year than last year and with 2 more days to go in the federal budget year, you will hit a home run, record-breaking year—again! Let's finish strong—like those we serve.”

To achieve 2014 success, Engility assembled a workforce organized into multiple skilled teams composed of Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) architects, data architects, software developers, database specialists, senior architects, testers, and technical writers. This resulted in a strong, innovative team that implemented an Agile software development methodology with a Scrum framework to quickly analyze and isolate what was needed to be successful—a fully integrated team of badgeless contractors all working together toward the same goals and with the same conviction: helping our veterans within an abbreviated development time.

VBMS Release 5.0 rolled out to all VA Regional Offices on June 15, 2013 – 6 months ahead of schedule—supporting 20,000 claims adjudicators. The new release created an end-to-end processing of compensation claims in a paperless environment that builds upon existing VBMS capabilities, and that release was delivered incrementally using an Agile development methodology based on priorities determined by VA. The scope incorporates not only the replacement of current functionality from legacy systems but also the evolution and realization of new capabilities in support of the business transformation.

The Engility team is implementing the Agile Integrated Development Environment (AIDE) to support full System Development Life Cycle (SDLC) for VBMS. Full SDLC includes Agile/Scrum framework implementation for project conception, planning, business process modeling, requirement elicitation, enterprise architecture, development, continuous integration and interoperability, capacity planning, and various levels of testing, as well as SW artifacts delivery, and management processes.

In 2014, Engility’s success was recognized for their efforts on VBMS with a $50 million contract to continue work on the program.

In bullet-list form, briefly summarize up to ten (10) accomplishments of the nominated department or team since the beginning of 2014 (up to 150 words).

1. The backlog of claims dropped 60% from 611,000 in March 2013 to 244,000 in October 2014.
2. VBMS has been used to process 888,000 claims (as of October 2014).
3. Used buy all 56 VA regional offices and universally across the VA
4. As of December 2014, over 28,000 users of VBMS could access over one billion electronic images converted from paper