On May 23, 2012, the White House announced a Digital Government Strategy for federal government agencies to use as a roadmap in delivering 21st century services to the American people. This vision calls for the increased use of technology to lower costs while enabling citizens to securely access high quality government information, data and services “anywhere, anytime, on any device.”

The core principles of the strategy focus on:

  • Using an information-centric approach to presenting information and data;
  • Collaborating on a shared platform across government agencies;
  • Providing customer-centric data that allows people to shape, share and consume information; and
  • Protecting privacy through a secure platform.

On this page, you will find the progress of the Social Security Administration in reaching the milestones spelled out in the Digital Government Strategy roadmap. We will continue to update this information as we advance toward our goal of harnessing the power of technology to better serve the American people.

Digital Government Strategy Report for the Social Security Administration

1.2. Ensure all new IT systems follow the open data, content, and web API policy and operationalize agency.gov/developer pages

Overall Status: In Progress

1.2.1. Document policy for architecting new IT systems for openness by default

Describe policy: The Open Data Policy requires federal agencies to institutionalize and operationalize information as an asset throughout the lifecycle. Currently, we have implemented activities to assist in managing information as an asset across the enterprise. These activities are managed by multiple systems organizations to provide consistent, interoperable, open, secure and high quality information within the data architecture and lifecycle. Activities included in the current implementation are the collection of business requirements, user centered design, use of open data architectures, naming standards, data modeling, security architect meetings, dataset publishing support process, and an enterprise repository. To meet the new requirements the short term objectives are to identify the impact of additional requirements from the memorandum, assess existing activities for completeness, identify key stakeholders and impact to the systems development lifecycle, determine policy implications, and complete an inventory of all Office of Systems developed and public facing data stores. We will continue to ensure that our stakeholders maintain the accuracy and quality of the information contained within the data architecture. As we continue to develop this strategy, milestones and timelines will be created to meet the objectives, including the identification of quantifiable and meaningful metrics to monitor our success.

1.2.4. Develop Data Inventory Schedule - Summary

Summarize the Inventory Schedule: This document provides a draft schedule and process that SSA will use to comply with Executive Order 13642 and OMB Memorandum M-13-13. Our intent is to request each SSA component to execute an internal analysis to determine and document the data sets that are releasable to the public by that component, data sets that are not releasable to the public, and data sets that will require manipulation to release to the public. As part of this process, we are creating Agency wide guidelines and establishing responsibility in existing boards to review data sets to determine if data sets should or should not be released to the public and /or what manipulation must be completed to release a certain data set to the public. Our policy will comply with OMB Working Paper 22 (Second version, 2005), "Report on Statistical Disclosure Limitation Methodology."

1.2.5. Develop Data Inventory Schedule - Milestones

Title: Data Standardization and Methodologies
Description: Enhance our data standards and methodologies to assist in building out the enterprise data inventory. Implemented a SharePoint site to add and update additional data assets for the short term until integration into other processes can occur.
Milestone Date: 03/31/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: Standard templates and methodologies will allow us to efficiently review and evaluate data sets that will reduce the effort required to capture new data assets. Created a spreadsheet to receive updates to existing data assets in the short term until integration into other processes can occur.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Provide standard templates and methodologies to efficiently capture and support better identification and classification of our data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: Standard templates and methodologies will allow us to efficiently review and evaluate data sets quickly for public access. The new web site allows individuals to review new data assets and contact the necessary individuals to identify if a data asset can be public.

Title: Lifecycle Integration
Description: Within the data creation process, develop checkpoints to capture and promote open data. Integrate the framework and open data policy with the agency lifecycle methodologies. In the planning and analysis lifecycle phase, we have a checkpoint to capture information necessary to support Open Data. Another checkpoint captures the implementation of the data asset in the construction lifecycle phase. The combination of these two checkpoints allows us to identify and register new data assets in a repeatable process.
Milestone Date: 06/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: Promoting open data within the agency lifecycle methodologies will capture data sets earlier in the data creation process thereby expanding our inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: The lifecycle integration will allow us to review and enhance early in the process the metadata for the data sets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: Provide guidance to new and existing data asset creators for creating and releasing data.

Title: Automation of asset Identification and Dissemination
Description: Leverage the lifecycle integration to collect through automated processes the necessary information to include in the enterprise data inventory. Upon receipt of new or updated information, we will build a process to automate the dissemination.
Milestone Date: 09/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: Implement automated processes to capture information utilizing the lifecycle integration to expand the inventory. In the planning and analysis lifecycle phase, we have a checkpoint to capture information necessary to support Open Data. Another checkpoint captures the implementation of the data asset in the construction lifecycle phase. The combination of these two checkpoints allows us to identify and register new data assets in an automated process.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Build into the automated process the data standardization and methodologies to enhance the inventory.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: Automation will create a quick and efficient process to release data to the public.

Title: Fully developed Agency policy
Description: Continue to expand and develop the agency data policy to promote openness and enrichment of data. A policy has been created to provide additional executive level support to the Open Data Policy and is currently working through the executive channels.
Milestone Date: 09/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: The policy will assist in how we will expand the inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: The Agency policy will ensure diverse agency components participate in the identification and documentation of new data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: The policy will assist in how we will open additional data to the public.

Title: Completed Enterprise Data Inventory
Description: The inventory lists all data assets in the agency. Each data asset is either public, restricted public, or non-public.
Milestone Date: 10/31/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: To expand the inventory we will be working through the agency component by component to identify additional data assets.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Each data asset will be required to provide a description, keywords, and other metadata necessary to assist the agency in identification and classification of the asset.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release.

Title: Completed Budget, Finance, Quality, and Management Data Assessment
Description: DCBFQM releases a number of curated datasets to the public that we will place in our public data listing.
Milestone Date: 03/31/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. Thirty-seven additional data assets were added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. DCBFQM provided additional tags to enhance existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. At this point in time, no new data assets were identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Communications Data Assessment
Description: The Office of Communications aims to release data on internet usage of SSA websites, stats on public inquiries, and other communications related data.
Milestone Date: 03/31/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. Three additional data assets were added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. The Office of Communications did not provide any additional tags to existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. At this point in time, no new data assets were identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Disability Adjudication and Review Data Assessment
Description: DCDAR includes the Office of the Chief Administrative Law Judge.
Milestone Date: 03/31/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. Five additional data assets were added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. The Office of Communications did not provide any additional tags to existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. At this point in time, no new data assets were identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Human Resources Data Assessment
Description: HR includes the Office of Civil Rights and Equal Opportunity.
Milestone Date: 06/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. Twenty-one new data assets were added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. The Office of Human Resources provided additional tags to enhance existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. No new data assets were identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Retirement and Disability Policy Data Assessment
Description: DCRDP releases a number of curated datasets to the public that we will place in our public data listing.
Milestone Date: 06/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. Six additional data assets were added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. The Office of Retirement and Disability provided additional tags to enhance existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. At this point in time, no new data assets were identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Office of the Chief Actuary Data Assessment
Description: The Chief Actuary releases a number of publications including Trustees Reports, SSI Annual Reports, and statistical tables. We will place Actuary data sets in our public listing.
Milestone Date: 06/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. No new data assets were added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. No enrichment of the existing inventory were provided.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. No new data assets were identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Office of the General Counsel Data Assessment
Description: The Office of the General Counsel includes the Office of Privacy and Disclosure.
Milestone Date: 06/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. One additional data asset was added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. The office of the General Counsel provided additional tags to enhance existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. One new data asset was identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Office of the Inspector General Data Assessment
Description: The OIG periodically releases reports on the efficiency and effectives in the administration of the SSA. We will review for data sets that can be extracted from these reports.
Milestone Date: 06/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. Three additional data assets were added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. The office of Inspector General provided additional tags to enhance existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. At this point in time, no new data assets were identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Office of the Chief Strategic Officer Data Assessment
Description: The Chief Strategic Officer works across SSA to infuse strategic thinking into our culture and to promote innovation. This is a new office, so there may be few data sets to be released.
Milestone Date: 06/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. Seven additional data assets were added to the enterprise data inventory.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: Detailed descriptions of each data set will be provided with associated meta tags. The Office of Chief Strategic Officer provided additional tags to enhance existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. Seven new data assets were identified for public consumption.

Title: Completed Office of Systems Data Assessment
Description: The Office of Systems designs, develops, and maintains the software at SSA. Systems maintains very sensitive and critical databases. We will review data sets closely before any release.
Milestone Date: 09/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. We expanded the inventory by one hundred fifty four additional data assets.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. The Office of Systems provided additional tags to enhance existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. We expanded the public data assets by thirteen data asset to come to a total of fifteen for public consumption.

Title: Completed Office of Operations Data Assessment
Description: The Office of Operations is responsible for administering benefits and services to the public. We will review data sets closely before any release.
Milestone Date: 09/30/2014
Description of how this milestone expands the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. We expanded the inventory by thirty-nine additional data assets.
Description of how this milestone enriches the Inventory: We will work with the component to add data assets into the enterprise data inventory. The Office of Operations provided additional tags to enhance existing data assets.
Description of how this milestone opens the Inventory: We will work with the component to identify additional data sets for release. We expanded the public data assets by four data asset.

1.2.6. Develop Customer Feedback Process

Describe the agency's process to engage with customers: We will continue to solicit ideas from our stakeholders and we will hold public feedback engagements to better understand your needs and to explain the data we make available. Some engagements have been held via conference call as well as in person. We discuss Open Data and our public data during quarterly conference calls with a broad group of stakeholders, with background information and invitations to over 10,000 advocates and organizations. We also use automated tools, like IdeaScale, to help organize and track ideas from the public. We have a customer feedback process linked from our Data page located at http://ssa-ideas.ideascale.com. Please read the ideas at SSA's IdeaScale community. You can add comments and/or vote on those already submitted. If you have a new idea that you do not see, we invite you to add it to the community. As decisions are made, we respond to the ideas submitted through the customer feedback process in our on-line tool and on a new webpage that provides the status of key Open Data ideas located at http://www.ssa.gov/open/customer-feedback.html. Ideas suggested by the public are reflected in our Open Government Plan 3.0 and helped to inform our recent Information Technology investment decisions for FY 2015. We also reach out to our top data users - either data on our websites, data sets on Data.gov, or data through FOIA requests - and received their feedback through surveys and direct contacts. We received many ideas on what Social Security data the public finds most useful, how they use it, the value it provides, suggestions they have to make the data more useful, and suggestions for additional high-value data the public would like.

1.2.7. Develop Data Publication Process

Describe the agency's data publication process: On May 9, 2013, President Obama signed an Executive Order “Making Open and Machine Readable the New Default for Government Information”, which establishes the direction the Social Security Administration is taking to move to an open data environment. Following the executive order, the Office of Management and Budget issued M-13-13, Open Data Policy-Managing Information as an Asset, which provides more detailed guidance to agencies for implementing open data. The directive explicitly requires agencies to use machine-readable and open formats. The premise is that human readable text is not sufficient for many of the innovative uses of data and that opening up the government's data resources for innovation is best done using machine readable formats and open standards. All data released to the public under this process may be used without restriction. SSA has a longstanding and historical commitment to maintaining the privacy of the information it holds for the millions of Americans who depend on our programs. Since its inception, protecting the confidentiality of information has been a central theme of the Social Security program. In fact, the very first regulation enacted on June 16, 1937 by the Social Security Board (the predecessor to SSA) stressed the importance of the confidentiality of personal information in the agency’s possession. SSA will continue to adhere to these principles as it moves to a more open data environment. SSA has leveraged a number of existing internal data review boards, in consultation with our Office of the General Counsel, to develop a process to review data sets for release to the public. These internal boards review data sets to ensure that Personally Identifiable Information (PII) is not released. Our review also ensures that data sets which, in combination with other data sets do not pose a risk to the privacy or security of PII maintained by SSA. This is known as the mosaic effect. Additionally, SSA maintains strict compliance with the Privacy Act of 1974; the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA) privacy, security, and breach notification rules; the Confidential Information Protection and Statistical Efficiency Act (CIPSEA); and all other applicable laws, rules and regulations. Data sets that are reviewed and determined not to be releasable are fully documented for the reasons for non-release. Examples of data sets that will not be released are data sets that contain social security numbers, tax information, health and insurance information, and data sets when combined with other publicly released data sets can identify a specific individual or result in a privacy or security risk. SSA is currently developing an agency-wide open data policy that will harmonize our current data release processes and procedures.

2.1. Engage with customers to identify at least two existing major customer-facing services that contain high-value data or content as first-move candidates to make compliant with new open data, content, and web API policy.

Overall Status: Completed

2.1.1. Paragraph on customer engagement approach

Paragraph on customer engagement approach: SSA has a long history of engaging our customers to gain feedback from them on the services we provide. In the past we have used open participation surveys for public evaluations of communications products/services and customer satisfaction feedback on our web pages. In addition, we have conducted online focus groups, either by bulletin board or third party webinar hosting services. We have also used ideation tools to gather public comments on products like our Open Government Plan using public and employee comments gathered via Ideascale. In order to engage with our customers most recently, we published a request for comments in the Federal Register on July 27, 2012. We asked our customers to provide their feedback on several questions that will help us provide better services to them. We ensured widespread consideration of this request by issuing Dear Colleague letters to over 75 different organizations. This includes customers such as advocacy groups, professional organizations, Union and Management associations, etc. We have asked for their comment by Internet, Fax or mail by August 27, 2012. Once we review their feedback, we will evaluate their responses and determine the best candidates to pursue, given our current resources.

2.1.2. Prioritized list of systems (datasets)

System Name: SSA State Agency Monthly Workload Data
System Description: Monthly information from October 2000 onwards concerning claims for disability benefits that were referred for a disability determination to one of the 54 state agencies. The data may be used to examine disability application filing trends by time and by state, state agency workloads, and disability claims outcomes.
System Scope: Both
Main Customer: Individuals and their appointed representatives who are applying for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits, disability advocates, program and policy researchers.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002140

System Name: Average Wait Time Until Hearing Held Report
System Description: A presentation of the average time (in months) from the hearing request date until a hearing is held for claims pending in the Office of Disability.
System Scope: Both
Main Customer: Individuals and their appointed representatives who are applying for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits, disability advocates, program and policy researchers.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002700

System Name: Hearing Office Workload Data
System Description: A monthly presentation of four key workload indicators (pending, receipts, dispositions and average processing time) for each hearing office in the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR).
System Scope: Both
Main Customer: Individuals and their appointed representatives who are applying for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits, disability advocates, program and policy researchers.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002700

System Name: Hearing Office Average Processing Time Ranking Report
System Description: A monthly ranking of the 165 ODAR hearing offices (including 3 satellite offices) by the average number of days until final disposition of the hearing request. The average shown will be a combined average for all cases completed in that hearing office. The public will be able to determine where a particular hearing office stands among the total with respect to this workload category.
System Scope: Both
Main Customer: Individuals and their appointed representatives who are applying for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits, disability advocates, program and policy researchers.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002700

System Name: SSA/Department of State Identity Verification Web Service
System Description: SSA is providing the DOS with information to verify the identity of passport applicants via a web service. This is being done based on a reimbursable agreement with DOS.
System Scope: Internal
Main Customer: Directly for the DOS and indirectly for passport applicants.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002212

2.2. Make high-value data and content in at least two existing, major customer-facing systems available through web APIs, apply metadata tagging and publish a plan to transition additional high-value systems

Overall Status: Completed

2.2.1. Publish plan on future activity

Describe policy: Digital government is not a new concept for SSA and has been a core tenet in the agency's plan for continuous improvement in service delivery to the public. For over 10 years the SSA has made appropriate portions of the agency's data available online through API access. SSA provides its data and services via several digital service channels including telephone, online, formal data exchanges, web-services (machine to machine), and most recently, mobile. SSA also offers many electronic services to third parties who do business with us, including U.S. Military, Federal, State, and Foreign agencies in addition to private service providers. This experience has led to well established and formalized processes surrounding project selection, project oversight, lifecycle practices. These existing processes help ensure that appropriate data is made available to customers based on best practices, in accordance with our core mission, and with the goal to ensure good stewardship of public resources and customer data. SSA will continue to leverage our existing processes for project selection as it relates to expansion of API data delivery. Additionally, we will build upon the mission the agency has undertaken towards the expanded open data policy and the goals outlined in DGS 1.2. The processes and policies for open data as a whole will also evaluate the most appropriate method for delivering information to our customers. This evaluation will in turn drive the expansion of APIs as appropriate and in accordance with the evolving policies surrounding open data.

2.2.2. Make 2+ systems (datasets) available via web APIs with metadata tags

Name of system: Average Wait Time Until Hearing Held Report
Description of system: A presentation of the average time (in months) from the hearing request date until a hearing is held for claims pending in the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review.
Scope of system: Both
Main Customers: Individuals and their appointed representatives who are applying for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits, disability advocates, program and policy researchers.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002700
API Link: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/developer/api/averWait.htm

Name of system: Hearing Office Workload Data
Description of system: A monthly presentation of four key workload indicators (pending, receipts, dispositions and average processing time) for each hearing office in the Office of Disability Adjudication and Review (ODAR).
Scope of system: Both
Main Customers: Individuals and their appointed representatives who are applying for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits, disability advocates, program and policy researchers.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002700
API Link: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/developer/api/hearingWorkload.htm

Name of system: Hearing Office Average Processing Time Ranking Report
Description of system: A monthly ranking of the 165 ODAR hearing offices (including 3 satellite offices) by the average number of days until final disposition of the hearing request. The average shown will be a combined average for all cases completed in that hearing office. The public will be able to determine where a particular hearing office stands among the total with respect to this workload category.
Scope of system: Both
Main Customers: Individuals and their appointed representatives who are applying for Social Security and Supplemental Security Income benefits, disability advocates, program and policy researchers.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002700
API Link: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/developer/api/hearingProcessing.htm

4.2. Establish an agency-wide governance structure for developing and delivering digital services

Overall Status: Completed
Paragraph on Governance: The Social Security Administration (SSA) is a centralized agency (no bureaus or departments). We have a very robust, centralized IT environment that supports the automation of major aspects of the agency's core mission. We don't face the difficulty that other agencies do when it comes to managing our digital services. SSA's organizational structure provides clear areas of responsibility for the various aspects of digital services, including those such as hiring, acquisitions, etc. These functional responsibilities are well defined and explained in the organizational information found at http://www.socialsecurity.gov/org/. The agency provides multiple secure delivery channels for our services; including telephone, online, formal data exchanges, Web services (machine to machine), and mobile. SSA offers many electronic services to third parties who do business with us; including those in the private and public sector. We also provide Government-to-Government services and electronic data exchanges to the U.S. Military, Federal, State, Local, and Foreign agencies. The CIO and our investment review board, the Strategic IT Assessment and Review Board (SITAR) (comprised of executive representatives from each of our major agency components) are responsible for governance and oversight of our IT investments. Together, they ensure that our key digital service initiatives align with our Agency Strategic Plan, the administrative budget, the Annual Performance Plan and our Enterprise Architecture. Digital services are proposed to the SITAR by the agency Strategic Objective Portfolios (SOPs). Each SOP represents a major business area, complete with projects, portfolio management infrastructure and a performance measurement process that provides a lower level of governance. Oversight for these digital services is handled by the eServices Governance Steering Committee. This group governs our standards, processes and procedures for SSA's digital services. In addition they formulate and document our eService strategy and oversee its implementation within SSA. This group provides recommendations to the SOPs mentioned above. All of these entities have clear roles and responsibilities and are guided by the principles clearly stated in our ASP at http://www.ssa.gov/asp/plan-2013-2016.pdf. SSA has had this strong centralized digital IT governance for well over ten years now. We continue to evolve our governance as we gain new insights into what the American public expects and deserves in government services.
URL to Governance Document: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/irm/IRM_2012.pdf

5.2. Develop an enterprise-wide inventory of mobile devices and wireless service contracts

Overall Status: Completed

5.2.1. Develop wireless and mobile inventory

Bureau/Component: Done for all of SSA
Inventory Status: Completed

5.3. Evaluate the government-wide contract vehicles in the alternatives analysis for all new mobile-related procurements

Overall Status: Completed
Describe Implementation: SSA has established effective, enterprise-level life-cycle processes - as well as appropriate management, control and governance mechanisms - to ensure that mobile technologies are acquired and centrally managed across the enterprise throughout their respective life cycles. SSA's enterprise strategy for the acquisition, deployment and management of a Mobile Device Management (MDM) platform and for mobile devices and wireless services requires, as part of alternatives analysis, consideration of government-wide contract vehicles prior to any decision to pursue an open-market competitive acquisition.

6.3. Ensure all new digital services follow digital services and customer experience improvement guidelines

Overall Status: Completed
Describe Implementation: Digital government is not a new concept for SSA and has been a core tenet in the Agency's plan for continuous improvement in service delivery to the public. For over 18 years the SSA has made appropriate portions of the agency's data and customer centric applications available online. SSA provides its data and services via several digital service channels including telephone, online, formal data exchanges, web-services (machine to machine), and most recently, mobile. SSA also offers many electronic services to third parties who do business with us, including U.S. Military, Federal, State, and Foreign agencies in addition to private service providers. This experience has led to well established and formalized processes surrounding project selection, project oversight, lifecycle practices, code reuse and application architectures. These processes help ensure the best practices that have been developed over the last decade are leveraged on all projects pursued by the agency. SSA has also made a major commitment to usability, user-centered design and accessibility. For over 18 years the agency has maintained a specialized staff whose sole function is to ensure that agency applications follow the principles of user-centered design and has evolved to include accessibility. In addition to user-centered design, SSA also has a long history of engaging our customers on user experience related to electronic services. SSA has employed and continues to employ a wide array of tools to improve the customer experience. The agency has leveraged formalized data gathering through our Public Insight Process, focus groups, customer feedback, user surveys, and crowdsourcing tools to name a few. SSA will continue to exploit these and other avenues to ensure customer needs and expectations are understood and met. SSA is fully committed to continue efforts toward the improvement and expansion of digital services and the enhancement of the customer experience. The Digital Government Strategy Advisory group worked with the Federal Web Managers Council, which SSA is a member, to establish guidelines for improving digital services and customer experience. Many of the recommendations from these guidelines are already incorporated into SSA's established processes. Moving forward SSA intends to incorporate all appropriate guidance stemming from this activity into the formal processes that support digital service projects and to improving service to our customers.

7.1. Engage with customers to identify at least two existing priority customer-facing services to optimize for mobile use.

Overall Status: Completed

7.1.1. Paragraph on customer engagement approach

Paragraph on customer engagement approach: SSA has a long history of engaging our customers to gain feedback from them on the services we provide. In the past we have used open participation surveys for public evaluations of communications products/services and customer satisfaction feedback on our web pages. In addition, we have conducted online focus groups, either by bulletin board or third party webinar hosting services. We have also used ideation tools to gather public comments on products like our Open Government Plan using public and employee comments gathered via Ideascale. In order to engage with our customers most recently, we published a request for comments in the Federal Register on July 27, 2012. We asked our customers to provide their feedback on several questions that will help us provide better services to them. We ensured widespread consideration of this request by issuing Dear Colleague letters to over 75 different organizations. This includes customers such as advocacy groups, professional organizations, Union and Management associations, etc. We have asked for their comment by Internet, Fax or mail by August 27, 2012. Once we review their feedback, we will evaluate their responses and determine the best candidates to pursue, given our current resources.

7.1.2. Prioritized list of systems (datasets)

System Name: Mobile Supplemental Security Income (SSI) Wage Reporting Application
System Description: SSI recipients will use this application to report their monthly wage amounts. This enables them to meet their monthly reporting obligations.
System Scope: External
Main Customer: SSI recipients who need to report their wages on a monthly basis.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002146

System Name: Mobile Optimized Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
System Description: People seeking information from SSA will use this mobile optimized FAQ website to obtain information about numerous topics.
System Scope: External
Main Customer: The general public - anyone seeking information from SSA.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002146

System Name: Mobile Contact
System Description: People seeking to do business with SSA will use this application to get needed information and directions to their local SSA office. In addition they will have access to information about services available by phone and online.
System Scope: External
Main Customer: The general public - anyone seeking to do business with SSA.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002146

System Name: Mobile Optimized Life Expectancy Calculator
System Description: The Life Expectancy Calculator is a valuable financial planning tool which we encourage the public to use to help decide when to retire and begin collecting Social Security benefits. The Calculator uses the gender and birth date entered by the user to provide the average number of additional years a person of the same gender and age can expect to live when he reaches a specific age. Providing a mobile optimized version of the Calculator also provides links to other helpful retirement planning tools and helps to promote other online services.
System Scope: External
Main Customer: The general public – anyone planning for retirement.
Unique Investment Identifier: 016-000002146

7.2. Optimize at least two existing priority customer-facing services for mobile use and publish a plan for improving additional existing services

Overall Status: Completed
Describe Implementation: Digital government is not a new concept for SSA and has been a core tenet in the Agency's plan for continuous improvement in service delivery to the public. For over 18 years the SSA has made appropriate portions of the agency's data and customer centric applications available online. SSA provides its data and services via several digital service channels including telephone, online, formal data exchanges, web-services (machine to machine), and most recently, mobile. SSA also offers many electronic services to third parties who do business with us, including U.S. Military, Federal, State, and Foreign agencies in addition to private service providers. This experience has led to well established and formalized processes surrounding project selection, project oversight, lifecycle practices, code reuse and application architectures. This experience has led to well established and formalized processes surrounding project selection, project oversight, lifecycle practices. These existing processes help ensure that appropriate applications are made available to customers based on best practices, in accordance with our core mission, and with the goal to ensure good stewardship of public resources and customer data. SSA will continue to leverage our existing processes for project selection as it relates to expansion of mobile application development. Additionally, the agency is in the process of making formal enhancements to the projects selection process to reference the growing need for mobilization. In part these enhancements stipulate that "Where possible, optimize all future online applications and informational services for the mobile environment, using responsive design. In addition, consider mobile-enabling existing applications and informational services as they come up for significant enhancements or maintenance." SSA values the improvement to customer service that can be attained through mobilization and will continue on the path toward the expansion of mobile services.

7.2.1. Report on services

Service Name: socialsecurity.gov for Mobile
Service Description: Allows users to view specific high value content on socialsecurity.gov on Mobile Devices
System Scope: External
Primary customers: The general public - anyone seeking to do business with SSA.
URL of service: http://www.socialsecurity.gov

Service Name: mContact
Service Description: Provides information on all the channels the public can utilize to conduct business with SSA. (i.e. online, phone, email, and face-to-face).
System Scope: External
Primary customers: The general public - anyone seeking to do business with SSA.
URL of service: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/locator

Service Name: mWage (iOS)
Service Description: This application will allow an SSI recipient, a recipient's representative payee, or an individual whose income helps an SSI recipient meet their basic needs (like a parent or a spouse) report their monthly wages to Social Security from the convenience of their smartphone.
System Scope: External
Primary customers: SSI recipients who need to report their wages on a monthly basis.
URL of service: https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/ssi-mobile-wage-reporting/id563535561?mt=8&ls=1

Service Name: mWage (Android)
Service Description: This application will allow an SSI recipient, a recipient's representative payee, or an individual whose income helps an SSI recipient meet their basic needs (like a parent or a spouse) report their monthly wages to Social Security from the convenience of their smartphone.
System Scope: External
Primary customers: SSI recipients who need to report their wages on a monthly basis.
URL of service: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=gov.ssa.mkwr&feature=nav_result#?t=W251bGwsMSwxLDMsImdvdi5zc2EubWt3ciJd

8.2. Implement performance and customer satisfaction measuring tools on all .gov websites

Overall Status: Completed

8.2.1. Implement performance measurement tool

Implemented Digital Analytics Program: Yes
If Not, Describe Implementation:
Percent of websites covered: 100%
URL of performance data: This performace data is used internally

8.2.2. Implement customer satisfaction tool

Describe Implementation: The Social Security Administration uses the American Customer Satisfaction Index (ACSI) to measure customer satisfaction of our digital services. The ACSI, developed by the National Quality Research Center at the University of Michigan, is a widely used and well-respected national indicator of customer satisfaction with goods and services in the U.S. economy since 1994. ForeSee is one of only two companies that have been licensed to apply the ACSI methodology for the public sector. SSA works with ForeSee in applying the ACSI methodology by collecting customer satisfaction data via online surveys on our public facing websites. SSA uses the information gained from the surveys to make changes to our digital services to improve our customers' experience. We have been using the ACSI surveys for well over ten years. ForeSee also provides us with periodic Satisfaction Insight Reviews (SIRs) which identify key findings, and makes recommendations for improvement.
URL of performance data: This customer satisfaction data is used internally.

Last updated November 25, 2014 at 2:05 pm

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