VETERANS AFFAIRS

Delays bring extension of IBM VA project

IBM Corp. has been given another year to complete the transition of Veteran Affairs employees to a new human resources system because of agency challenges and defects.

IBM first won the contract to provide a cloud-based HR system for 500,000 VA employees in 2013. Everyone was to be transitioned by the end of 2015, but the agency and IBM hit some snags.

In a contract modification, the VA said that the extension was “due, for the most part, to VA challenges associated with source data, help desk ticket resolution and focused training needs,” according to the posting on FBO.gov. IBM also has issues with defects that need to be resolved.

The new system, known as the Human Resources Information System, replaces the legacy Personnel Accounting and Integrated Data system, which is over 50 years old.

The modification gives IBM until the end of the year to complete two deployments. One is for 80,000 people, and the second is for 200,000. The value of the modification is $2 million. When IBM won the project, the estimated value was $123 million over 10-years.

IBM is building a new system and then will operate and maintain it. When they won the contract, they touted it as a first of its kind in the government

The VA HR system handles over 1 million transactions a year, and the new system is supposed to automate workflows that will initiate, review and approve personnel actions. It’ll also route personnel actions through an approval sequence and provide appropriate notifications.

About the Author

Nick Wakeman is the editor-in-chief of Washington Technology. Follow him on Twitter: @nick_wakeman.

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