Accenture Federal Services (AFS), a subsidiary of Accenture, recently announced that it won a $453 million prime contract from the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to modernize GI Bill claims processing for active and veteran service members and their dependents.
Leading a team of twelve subcontractors, AFS will work to improve claims processing and modernize other education and management systems via automation, UI/UX design updates, and data analytics, among other modern IT services. The initiative will include implementing updates to the GI Bill Claims Processing and Management Service mandated by the Veterans Health Care and Benefits Improvement Act of 2020 as well as providing IT and management consulting services. New legislation requires the VA to transform roughly two dozen legacy IT systems.
With the contract running for a base period of seven months with nine one-year option periods, AFS should be able to make a substantial impact in modernizing and improving the GI Bill services, which have assisted millions of U.S. veterans in accessing postsecondary education after their service.
According to Shawn Roman, Managing Director at AFS and Client Account Lead for the VA, “Through the Digital GI Bill Delivery Program, we will help VA reduce its claims processing times through increased automation, enabling VA administrators and employees to focus on serving Veterans and providing a more productive veteran experience.”
By improving the speed and accuracy of the claims process as well as adapting it to the new shift to virtual learning, AFS and the VA hope to improve the customer service level for veterans using the system as well as position it to implement future legislative goals in a more agile manner.
This announcement comes at a key time for the department, which serves more than nine million U.S. veterans and their dependents every year. The organization has faced significant technological challenges, brought about by a myriad of outdated and frequently unreliable IT systems and over a billion dollars in tech debt. With the VA making IT modernization a strategic imperative in recent years, this latest push is intended to continue the transformative work to improve the GI Bill benefits the VA began in 2008.