Department of Veterans Affairs

Digital Transformation Center DTC

The Challenge:

The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) recognized a need to rapidly modernize the IT systems and tools they used to fulfill their mission as the provider of health care services to U.S. veterans and their families. The typical government software development program did not meet their modernization needs as they tried to fulfill this goal, with the traditional IT delivery process taking years to develop and implement solutions while veterans waited for care.

The Solution:

The VA created the Digital Transformation Center (DTC) which accelerates the VA’s modernization efforts by using emerging technologies to better serve veterans and their families. The DTC is designed to accelerate the IT delivery process by enabling the VA to leverage Software as a Service (SaaS), Platform as a Service (PaaS), and emerging technologies. The DTC started as a pilot program with a single Salesforce instance, enabling the team to quickly develop IT solutions on the Salesforce platform and accelerating time to value by 3-6x. The program was expanded in 2019, adding tools and resources to support dozens of other SaaS products used by VA staff. The DTC now includes Microsoft Power Platform and Dynamics 365, ServiceNow, and the Pega platform among others, making it the VA’s one-stop location for access to modern digital tools and emerging technologies. Octo manages a large team of over 200 full-time employees across the program.​

  • Octo’s strategists, technologists, and practice leads provide consulting to VA leadership on modernization strategy and program direction. We provide expertise and consulting in no-code/low-code development using SaaS and PaaS tools to drive rapid modernization at the VA while enabling teams across the VA to take ownership of their IT solutions.
  • Octo leads the implementation of SaaS and PaaS tools at the VA, enabling business offices to use commercial-off-the-shelf tools in the government environment and drastically shorten development time.
  • By executing reusable contracts and ATOs, Octo and the VA have developed a model that reduces administrative burden and further increases time to value while maintaining integrity of security systems.
  • Octo’s team has grown the DTC to deliver 200+ SaaS and PaaS products that accelerate business outcomes across health care, benefits delivery, and VA operations.
  • The DTC has enabled the VA’s Salesforce implementation to be the product’s largest within the Federal Government.

The Benefits

Business offices across the VA have access to a marketplace of commercial-off-the-shelf SaaS products which can often be implemented in as few as three months in order to fulfill an IT need. If a product is not available on the marketplace, the DTC team guides the customer and vendor through the process of getting the product approved for use at the VA, while also ensuring it is made available on the marketplace for future teams who may wish to use it. For more complex challenges, our team of PaaS experts can build a solution using a platform such as Salesforce, Microsoft Power Platform, ServiceNow, or Pega, which have already been implemented at the VA, resulting in a powerful custom solution delivered in as few as 34 days.

The result is greater customer satisfaction in both the VA’s business offices as well as with its ultimate customers – our nation’s veterans, all while advancing rapid modernization efforts by bringing modern commercial tools to the government ecosystem, at the same time as enhancing the security of the VA’s IT tools and systems through a rigorous approval process.