Do you suspect that your company’s commitment to agile consists of jargon and sloganeering, as opposed to actual organizational and cultural change? Then you would do well to refer to this pamphlet on Detecting Agile BS (pdf) produced by the Department of Defense’s (DoD) Defense Innovation Advisory Board (DIB) in October of 2018. The DIB established itself to bring the best practices and innovations of Silicon Valley to DoD software development. The pamphlet was the result of luminaries such as Eric Schmidt, Reid Hoffman, and Neil deGrasse Tyson coming together turning their gimlet eye towards true agile practices in DoD software development.
I’ve excerpted some interesting parts of the pamphlet below and tied in some of my perspectives based on my current TeraThink project at U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Full disclosure: TeraThink is a for-profit company, and as such is not 100%-free of BS. However, I like to think we have less BS than most. I’ll detail why through highlighting key flags that a projects is not truly agile.
The Department of Defense (DoD) has awarded TeraThink a prime position on the Improved Dashboard Analytics and Workflow Support (IDAWS) Blanket Purchase Agreement (BPA). We are excited to apply our Information Management and Predictive Analytics expertise to enhance the tools used by DoD for decision support.
This award extends our long history providing financial management expertise to the DoD. Valued an estimated $140M over 5 years, winning this multi-award BPA is a testament to our team’s excellence supporting the DoD.
TeraThink is the prime integrator for Enterprise Funds Distribution (EFD), which is designed to increase visibility, auditability, and efficiency in the management of distributed funds and Congressional Actions for all Department of Defense (DoD) appropriations. EFD will be the authoritative source of Budget Line Items (BLI) for the entire life-cycle of all DOD programs.
In May 2017, the TeraThink Team concluded a year-long contract with a successful Go-Live delivered on time and within budget. The Go-Live enabled funds distribution capability for Defense organizations receiving and distributing Defense-wide funding. This effort also included migrating a user organization to EFD, developing outbound interface file formats, and providing custom reports which contain critical budget data. As a result of the successful implementation, our DLA client gave TeraThink an “exceptional” CPARs rating in 4 out of 5 evaluation areas.
On August 3, 2011, TeraThink was awarded a prime contract (H98210-11-C-0034) to provide accounting support services to DHRA through 2014. The DHRA is a Field Activity designed to give the Under Secretary of Defense (Personnel and Readiness) (USD (P&R)) greater oversight and flexibility in overseeing and coordinating the work of several organizations that directly administer personnel policies, maintain comprehensive databases, and provide a variety of education outreach and research programs. TeraThink’s support includes operational accounting support and maintenance of DHRA’s reimbursable program.
On June 28, 2011, TeraThink was awarded a prime contract (N00178-11-D-6702) for the Navy’s Seaport-e contract vehicle. TeraThink was awarded all seven of the Seaport-e geographic zones. The Seaport-e award will provide a significant platform for TeraThink to continue our proven trusted advisory support to the Navy. TeraThink is very pleased to be partnered with CACI International Inc. and Preferred Systems Solutions, Inc. Between our three firms, we have assembled a knowledgeable, experienced, and proven team of performers with in-depth Navy centric knowledge. Our team members were chosen specifically for our collective prior history working together across and federal and defense space and their ability to provide key Navy capabilities, experience, and expertise across multiple geographic regions.
TeraThink Corporation is awarded a contract to provide Defense Agency Initiative (DAI) implementation support to the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA). TeraThink is a subcontractor to Kforce Government Solutions.