Healthcare Case Studies
National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Center for Biotechnology Information (NCBI)
CC Pace was engaged (in partnership with NCI) to help lead a transformation of legacy software development processes at the NIH NCBI. Seeking to improve the quality, predictability and repeatability of its software delivery capabilities, NCBI has initiated the adoption of Agile development practices.
CC Pace’s initial responsibility was to perform an assessment of NCBI’s development teams spanning three lines of business. After the initial assessment, CC Pace was retained to implement the action plan created to guide the transformation. The change from waterfall to Agile is large, and involves multiple dimensions of change, including mindset, methods and even physical location (from cubes to co-location).
In addition, CC Pace worked directly with the curators that archive the results of genotype and phenotype studies funded by NIH to understand goals and current impediments. This resulted in a recommended future state that would closer align the group with their mission through changes in policy, process, organization and technology.
Blue Cross Blue Shield’s Federal Employee Program Operations Center (FEPOC)
CC Pace was engaged by BCBS’s FEPOC as a strategic partner to support its application development efforts and the Modernization program, including to help lead them through their Agile transition. CC Pace has played a key guiding role at FEPOC, having trained and coached dozens of teams in Scrum, Kanban, SAFe and Agile techniques, and we continue to provide regular coaching and training to teams and leadership. Our technical coaches have assisted in the introduction of Acceptance Test Driven Development (ATDD) and DevOps to several pilot teams.
CC Pace introduced the SAFe scaling framework for two of FEPOC’s larger programs and mentored several ScrumMasters to take on the Release Train Engineer (RTE) role. CC Pace is now working with the Infrastructure and service groups at FEPOC to utilize Kanban and integrate planning with the Scrum teams and programs for better delivery. The DevOps group is one of the first to utilize Kanban for joint planning and delivery.
CC Pace provided the leadership to establish a DevOps environment for the MyBlue customer eService web and mobile applications. CC Pace worked with both FEPOC and the Blue Cross/Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) on the Digital Experience program to create alignment across 12 teams and suppliers, including WebMD, ChipRewards and Alegius.
Ceca Foundation is a nonprofit that partners with healthcare communities to recognize their outstanding caregivers. They needed a platform for community members to nominate each other for recognition awards distributed throughout the year and engaged CC Pace to lead this effort. We began this engagement by identifying the key features and desired outcome of the application. This provided us with a guiding set of principles to use when making technology decisions. User engagement was critical to the program, so we prioritized ease-of-use and user experience in the application. We used an Agile approach to build the software so that we could collaborate frequently with the Ceca program stakeholders. Every two weeks we committed to providing working software so that stakeholders could test the system, rather than speculate about how it would work. The development team also conducted demonstrations every other week to collect feedback that would drive the next set of features.
Working with an organization that makes a direct social impact on community members was a very rewarding experience for the CC Pace team. We continue to support the Ceca Foundation on their technology initiatives as they expand to many more healthcare communities.
Department of Health and Human Services, Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (HHS/CMS)
CC Pace has provided Agile coaching to the CMS staff and some 120 Agile software developers working on the government’s Internet Quality Improvement and Evaluation System (iQIES). CC Pace was tasked with guiding these teams through the Agile scaling process for large systems development known as SAFe.
CC Pace has provided leadership training and worked hand-in-hand with the Product Owners on value stream mapping to reduce waste from current process as well as story mapping to prepare for program increments. Our team of coaches also provided ongoing training and guidance to the teams to increase communication and identify risks and dependencies across the program. Our coaches added several SAFe events to iQIES, such as the Inspect and Adapt Workshop, and SAFe Team Assessments. CC Pace coaches were actively engaged in the coaching Community of Practice for the Center for Clinical Standards and Quality (CCSQ) and contributing to the Atlassian modifications for Essential SAFe. Coaching recommendations resulted in better alignment of contact staff to support the iQIES Product Owners. In addition, CC Pace coaches implemented Agile metrics tracking and a process to monitor progress against stated goals, including measurement of program objectives completed at the end of each PI.