Case Study: Reimagined Office of Information Technology (OIT) for USCIS

The Problem Peraton’s Solution The Value Delivered

The Peraton team was successful in helping the CIO transform the OIT from a legacy mainframe-centric computing environment to a cloud-based environment with access to more than 200 tools and services supporting the development of innovative products.

Decommissioning the mainframe along with several applications enabled the agency to develop a modern, scalable, and sustainable software (SW) architecture to support mission critical applications. By implementing new methods and processes, the OIT was able to transform the culture, organizational structure, and skillsets of the office while enhancing the relationship with the business offices in the agency.

The Problem

More than 10,000 U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) employees in service centers and field offices worldwide utilize the legacy mainframe systems running the Benefits Portfolio—nine mission critical applications that adjudicate and grant immigration benefits—to integrate with other DHS components and federal agencies to exchange benefits data. The legacy mainframe computing environment was unsustainable due to:

  • High cost and lack of qualified resources to maintain it
  • Applications that longer supported the evolving mission
  • Limited capability to update and innovate
  • Poor system documentation on application details and integrations
  • Incomplete business application requirements and rules documentation

Peraton’s Solution

Peraton reimagined digital to enable the OIT to move through the continuum of trusted operators and lead mission growth and transformation within the agency—elevating customer experiences and creating new products, services, and operating models.

Digital Reimagined is enabling:

  • Development of a new cloud-based digital computing environment
  • Incorporation of the Scaled Agile Framework (SAFe®):
    • Enables business agility for transformation projects
    • Provides improved collaboration, speed, quality, and customer centricity
    • Extends Agile principles from the team level to the teams of agile teams
    • Integrates Agile-adjacent principles such as Lean, DevSecOps, and design thinking
  • Acceleration of product development with DevSecOps methodology
    • Combines software development, security controls, and IT operations in a streamlined process while incorporating a shift in organizational structure and culture
    • Speeds delivery of high-quality software by automating and integrating teams
  • Migration of the computing environment to AWS cloud
    • Customizes combinations of more than 200 cloud services—designed for optimizing application performance—to meet organizational needs
    • Lowers capital commitment and enhances time-to-value without compromising productivity

The Value Delivered

Peraton reimagined our customer’s organization to manage and continuously enhance their mission critical systems. Implementing SAFe® Agile and DevSecOps enabled the customer to organize teams around these methods—streamlining product development and delivery.

The value that Digital Reimagined delivered to our customer includes:

  • Active stakeholder participation—a cultural shift that enabled isolated teams to collaborate and innovate
  • Automated testing—an emphasis on testing continuously to promote the goal of “zero-defect” policy which Increases trust with operations staff regarding higher quality
  • Shift left security—the creation of Identity and Access Management roles giving only the permissions necessary following the least privilege rule
  • Decommissioned legacy environments—mainframe and three applications
  • New microservices application computing environment resulting in:
    • A modernized microservices application development environment enabling:
      • Rapid solution implementation and mainframe decommission—less than 12 months
      • 25% reduction in the overall development cost of new apps for USCIS
      • Enhanced product development quality
    • Improved collaboration among development, operations, and user teams and the implementation of extensive automation leading to faster delivery of business value and reduced time spent on feedback response and problem solving
    • Zero downtime deployments
    • Increased agility to react to changing customer priorities
    • Increased application availability and scalability
    • Delivery of a modern user experience
    • Cloud native development architecture
    • Enhanced customer experience

Published: May 18, 2022