Optimizing world-wide enterprise service & field desk operations for USCIS

abstract technology lines
abstract technology lines
The background

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is responsible for lawful immigration to the United States. The USCIS Office of Information Technology (OIT) leads the design, development, delivery, and deployment of effective, efficient, and secure immigration IT services and products for USCIS, helping to transform the nation’s immigration system.

USCIS OIT supports more than 27,000 government employees and contractors working at over 250 offices worldwide in an environment with more than 40,000 desktops and laptops, 25,000 printers and peripherals, 1,200 servers, and 15,000 mobile devices.

The challenge

To ensure its end users could effectively perform their mission-enabling responsibilities, USCIS OIT sought contractor support in operating and maturing their service desk, providing IT support to field offices and service centers, executing account management services, and performing hardware incident resolution.

By bringing in outside support, USCIS OIT sought to continuously improve incident/problem resolution speed; enhance end-user self-service abilities with comprehensive and easy-to-use solutions; identify the root causes of common technical problems and documenting replicable solutions to improve the overall efficiency and effectiveness of service desk operations; and introduce new technologies for end-user support as they became available, ensuring best-in-class service to their user community.

Our solution

To address these challenges and ensure DHS USCIS end users can effectively perform their duties, USCIS OIT selected GovCIO (formally Salient CGRT) for the Information Technology User and Field Operations Support (NEON) program. Since 2015, we have provided worldwide enterprise service desk and field support operations, as well as deployment and server and network operating system support services that continuously improve incident/problem resolution speed, enhance end-user self-service abilities, and improve operations efficiency and effectiveness. 

Upon contract award, GovCIO helped migrate service desk operations from an antiquated Information Technology Service Management (ITSM) system, which had a large backlog of unanswered and unresolved help desk tickets and lacked automated processes, to a new, best-of-breed ServiceNow service desk platform. 

Our team introduced ITIL best practices and have continuously worked to optimize service desk delivery, defining a roadmap to adopt ITIL 4, implementing AI-driven solutions to augment self-service and incident resolution capabilities, leveraging mobility solutions to improve field support activities, and helping to enhance overall user experience.

Over the past five years GovCIO has also been instrumental in executing major initiatives, such as relocating the Westminster, Colorado, Support Center to Stennis, Mississippi, and rapidly supporting telework capabilities in response to COVID-19. 


Our impact

GovCIO has had a significant impact on USCIS OIT's ability to carry out its mission efficiently and effectively.

The advancements we have implemented to drive service desk self-service capabilities for users has significantly improved the overall user experience and the productivity of service desk resources by:

  • Allowing users to resolve issues themselves and return to work more rapidly with increased customer satisfaction.
  • Improving end-user visibility into wait times regardless of service desk contact method.
  • Improving the self-service capability within chat interfaces to automatically select and send customers a “best match” solution written and explicitly formatted to address the symptoms of their specific needs.
  • Expanding Tier 0 services to include peer-to-peer support through our “Ask the Community” feature, which allows users to collaborate and answer each other’s questions, promoting collaboration and expanding users’ technical abilities.

Beyond introducing these self-service capabilities, our team has: 

  • Improved end-user satisfaction survey methods to help USCIS OIT realize an increase of over 400% in survey responses, providing improved insight into the end-user perspective.
  • Increased the efficiency of account management services by more than 25% using automation solutions.
  • Provided resources to support short notice responses to critical IT deployment efforts, including one in Amman, Jordan that enabled USCIS to process nearly 12,000 refugees in less than three months; for our efforts, GovCIO received the prestigious USCIS Director’s Beacon Award.
Panorama view of Washington DC skyline when sunset seen from Arlington cemetery.
Panorama view of Washington DC skyline when sunset seen from Arlington cemetery.