DISA is the premier Information Technology Combat Support Agency that provides and assures command, control, communications, computing, intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (C4ISR) to the warfighter. As a Combat Support Agency, DISA provides, operates, and assures command and control, information-sharing capabilities, and a globally accessible enterprise information infrastructure in direct support to joint warfighters, national-level leaders, and other mission and coalition partners across the full spectrum of operations.
In support of DISA’s global mission hundreds of business units, teams and employees must work and collaborate together to ensure the Department of Defense (DoD) has the capabilities, technologies and operational readiness and excellence to support our nation’s warfighters. A critical enabler of this support is a world-wide portfolio consisting of thousands of IT programs and projects that must be managed and delivered flawlessly.
In September 2015, DISA was at a crossroads. After attempting to implement multiple enterprise program and project management systems DISA still did not have an effective method for governing and managing IT projects resulting in:
These challenges had the potential to seriously degrade DISA’s operational readiness and ability to effectively deliver their strategic goals:
After a 30 day pilot to validate fit and functionality, DISA selected and implemented CorasManage and immediately began to manage and aggregate project data across their organization and empowering leadership to become experts on any portfolio, program or project within minutes. Given DISA’s global mission, this capability was critical enabling leadership to make decision in real-time as project risks and challenges arise.
In addition to information transparency and consistency, CorasManage was selected because of the platform’s inherent ease of use, speed of implementation, agility, modular design and its ability to be rapidly configured and aligned to DISA’s governance model and business processes without writing software code. Key CorasManage features and capabilities include:
In addition to these features, CorasManage is Section 508 Compliant and can be implemented behind the firewall or in any cloud. It performs full program life-cycle cost estimates supporting acquisition (or investment) program baselines. CorasManage Spend Plan functionality supports the financial planning, programming, budgeting and execution processes for identified investments; providing a centralized repository of program funding profiles for the tracking of budgets and funding lines across programmed investments, and emerging requirements; capturing planned and actual financial transactions (obligation vs. execution) for appropriations across multiple programs and funding sources. CorasManage uses an automated form of pair-wise comparison (Computer Aided Parallelization Toolkit) to enable investment review boards the ability to select, oversee, and prioritize IT investments.
CorasManage is more than just a data management solution. It’s a platform and eco-system of integrated management tools that reflect over 12 years of innovation and customer needs. It provides a holistic approach which aligns governance, procedure and policy to execution and then to an IT solution. DISA immediately understood the value proposition of CorasManage and has put power of management information into leadership’s control effectively making them the solution.
DISA configured, implemented and operationalized CorasManage in 90 days. The resulting system, now called DISA’s Management Information Decision Support (MIDS) system is the enterprise platform for governing, managing and tracking DISA projects and initiatives. Over 1,100 users use MIDS every day managing over 450 projects across 30 portfolios. MIDS is provisioned within the DISA Enterprise Portal Services (DEPS) “SharePoint” data center environment under a behind the firewall Platform as a Service (PaaS) and Software as a Service (SaaS) configuration.
Before CorasManage was implemented it took two days for each DISA Program Manager to develop reports and executive briefs. This was preceded by weeks of preparation, multiple data calls and configuration for each brief to reach a state of completion which often changed monthly based on reporting priorities. After CorasManage was implemented brief preparation was significantly reduced to less than half a day per month and significantly strengthened DISA’s operational and risk management capabilities. Executive leadership is now provided with real-time information and transparency to respond to, fix and mitigate issues as they happen instead of waiting days and sometimes weeks to find out.
CorasManage gives users the ability to aggregate data and information across multiple projects to get a holistic view at a portfolio or program level and the data and information required to optimize decision making to achieve strategic and tactical business objectives. To date, CorasManage has saved DISA approximately $500,000 dollars with an expected annual return of approximately $2 million dollars in productivity and software licensing savings. In addition, CorasManage has enabled DISA to solve several other operational challenges including: