Recently, Ad Hoc and our prime contractor partners at Oddball and GovernmentCIO won two contracts from the Department of Veterans Affairs to support the VA’s Veteran-Facing Services Applications and Platform programs. We’re thrilled to be able to continue our work with VA and to bring our expertise to the mission of serving Veterans.
In May 2016, Ad Hoc was awarded a three-year contract by VA to work with the Digital Service @ VA to build Vets.gov, a single destination for Veterans and their beneficiaries to find, apply for, and manage all the benefits that VA provides. Over the course of the contract, we worked with VA to support the development of over 25 services to Veterans used by over one million Veterans. The success of Vets.gov opened the door to discussions on how to bring this approach to a larger audience. On Veterans Day 2018, VA merged Vets.gov into VA.gov to power a new Veteran-centric version of their agency website.
The new VA.gov homepage.
As Vets.gov grew and merged with VA.gov, we began to see the broader needs that VA would have from a service that was now agency-wide. As our initial contract with VA came to a close, the follow-on work took the shape of not one, but two contracts: one to design and build the Veteran-facing applications themselves, and another to design and build the platform upon which those applications sit.
I see these two contracts as a validation of the success of our work prototyping a new Veteran experience on Vets.gov and the eventual merging of Vets.gov into VA.gov. Together with the VA and our partners, we’ve shown what’s possible when you center a web experience around the services your users most need.
One of the two contracts is the Veteran-Facing Services - Applications contract. For this contract, Ad Hoc teamed up with GovernmentCIO, an established VA partner with extensive experience delivering technology solutions in VA’s enterprise. This contract will support the core Veteran-facing services now on VA.gov for the next three years. The opportunity to bring Ad Hoc’s engineering, design, research, and product expertise to the task of improving critical services to millions of Veterans is exactly the type of project I envisioned when I founded Ad Hoc. The VA continues to lead the way in modernizing its services, creating a central strategy for digital service delivery, and making design decisions based on the input from real Veterans. We’re very excited to work with VA and GovernmentCIO to design and build digital services for Veterans.
Beyond continuing to support the existing services under the Applications contract, Ad Hoc and our prime partner Oddball will also be supporting the VA as it continues to build the Veteran-Facing Services Platform. The Platform program makes it easier to build additional services that can take advantage of the patterns, tools, research, and components Ad Hoc and the VA U.S. Digital Services team developed as part of the work to create Vets.gov. The goal is to make it easy for other teams to provide services to Veterans that have the same consistent feel, reliable infrastructure, and user experience backed by interviews with nearly 1,000 Veterans.
As we begin this next step on the Veteran-Facing Services Applications and Platform programs, we want to say a hearty thank you to our partners at GovernmentCIO and Oddball, our customers at Digital Service @ VA, and our stakeholders across VA. This project is an exciting advancement in how the government both supports technology teams and delivers excellent experiences for Veterans and other members of the public looking to access government services.