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Summary

The Geospatial Technology and Application Center (GTAC) currently supports an Enterprise Data Services (EDS) Team who collaborates with Forest Service programs to render authoritative enterprise map and data services to inform Forest Service decision making.  This collaboration serves the needs of diverse programs and partnerships such as the Office of Sustainability and Climate, the Office of Communications, the Office of Tribal Relations, the Open Data Program, the Forest Service ArcGIS Online Organization, and soon-to-be reporting and visualization initiatives associated with the Great American Outdoors Act. As the number and diversity of EDS programs and projects increases, coordinating and managing these projects becomes challenging.

Problem and Solution

The purpose of this task was to provide project management and coordination broadly. Locana was recently awarded a new task order to provide ongoing Project Management Support to the Enterprise Data Services (EDS) project. This work entains a number of different projects including those related to the GeoApp Configuration task order as well as the Great American Outdoors Act (GAOA). This position provided direct resources to support a variety of projects, services, and programs under EDS and GTAC.

These tasks included project initiation, planning, execution, monitoring and closeout, but they also included identifying efficient solutions for deploying Esri products and tools on desktop, web, mobile, and cloud-based environments, documentation of workflows and user guides to facilitate the application of new tools across a wide audience. We understood this also included gathering and documenting requirements, developing solutions, applying and testing new tools, workflows and applications.  

Solutions

Xentity scheduled and conducted kickoff meetings to start. We also provided SDLC Team Task Order Controls to develop a work plan to guide project activities. For our approach, we helped  move into Software deliverable lifecycle (SDLC) methods where we can apply an Agile Scrum Delivery Methodology (ADSM) to effectively develop and deliver geospatial applications for GTAC. By iterating through short delivery cycles and working from a story-based backlog of work, refinement of requirements and business needs occur very quickly and reduces rework later in the project lifecycle. The result was a solution that more precisely and comprehensively meets client expectations.

Outcome and Benefits

Utilizing ASDM methodology to develop data and applications, Xentity and Locana achieved the following for GTAC and their EDS team:

  • Sustained transparency about current work and the overall state of the project.
  • A high degree of interaction and feedback between all staff, which led to a more effective business value driven solution in various roles (Product Owner, Development, Project Management, Quality Management, etc.)
  • Focus on working from a prioritized, constantly evolving list of work items (product backlog).
  • Developing one small feature from start to finish thus confirming user requirements.
  • Delivery in a production-ready state with all integration complete.
  • Ability to course correct as opposed to correcting after exhausting project budget and/or schedule.
  • Higher level of accuracy due to frequent communication and validation.