I will describe how embracing Agile allowed the Department of Veterans Affairs to become one of the leading IT development and delivery shops in the federal Government. I will emphasize the tremendous turnaround in on-time information technology (IT) delivery performance VA achieved through the implementation of Agile practices and using a VA specific version of Agile we call the Project Management Accountability System (PMAS). I will also share how VA’s PMAS methodology and principles are shareable to other organizations, both government and industry.
• I will begin with a description of VA’s IT organization in the 2007-2009 timeframe. It was a failing organization that was able to deliver only 30% of its projects on time.
o Project managers routinely failed to deliver capabilities on time and senior leaders did not hold them accountable
o Projects frequently got off-track and were taking longer and longer to deliver
• VA’s Office of Information and Technology (OIT) was an organization that answered yes to the following questions:
o Does your organization deliver a significant percentage of IT projects late or not at all?
o Does your organization devote time and money to projects that take years to deliver IT capabilities?
o Does your organization sustain or extend funding for IT projects that fail to deliver on time?
o Is your organization’s leadership frustrated with the current IT delivery model?
o Can your organization deliver IT capabilities early and often?
• Clearly, it was time for a return to VA’s accountability culture
o VA had to return to a culture in which it was accountable for the expenditure of its IT resources and to efficiently deliver IT capabilities needed by our country’s Veterans
o Office of Information and Technology (OIT) senior leaders wanted a project management methodology that reinvigorated accountability and embraced agile practices in daily execution
• VA returned to accountability by using Agile practices to deliver IT capabi