Case Study

Leading IT Modernization

Project Summary

In 2021, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) faced IT challenges with its legacy position management system, Table of Organization Position System (TOPS). Originally designed on a mainframe, TOPS was later migrated to the cloud.
Over time, numerous system enhancements and business rule modifications occurred without proper documentation. This led to business logic becoming embedded in code and reports. As a consequence, stakeholders are unable to determine if records contain errors or are a result of unknown business logic or data discrepancies without consulting a software developer. Additionally, due to limitations in TOPS, complementary workflows were established in a separate SharePoint site. Moreover, there are critical interdependencies with key financial organization codes and budget codes essential for data reconciliation on a pay period basis.

OCT’s Approach

ICE is working with OCT to lead data cleanup, analysis, and resulting process improvement, training, and system enhancements to improve the overall posture of the position management program at ICE. OCT supports the client with technical, analytical, and program support for ICE TOPS-related interfaces, position management processes, and operational activities. This encompasses operational and technical writing, business logic verification, data cleanup, system code review, training plan development, and project management for phased/scope releases. OCT enhances ICE’s position management application by understanding its history and stakeholder needs. Workshops and surveys with internal and external stakeholders identify pain points and inform requirements for an improved user experience. Journey maps, created using Microsoft Visio and PowerPoint, guide the process. OCT also analyzes user interactions with the UI, maps data flows between applications, and implements improvements such as automating data import processes using Microsoft PowerBI and Tableau.

Close collaboration with government managers and writers results in accurate and easily understandable business process and system documents, reports, guides, and presentations.


OCT identified master data to ensure consistent definition and usage of all data elements that define a position and documented the authoritative source for each data element. Through the data analysis, OCT developed a new standardized data dictionary to be consumed by USCIS and ICE to improve data quality and their data understanding, which helped ICE to speed up the issue resolution and be more proactive.

OCT developed a multi-year product roadmap and has been working with OCIO in the next phase of improvement to leverage cloud-native functionalities and truly take advantage of cloud computing’s benefits. OCT has also led the office to adopt automated testing and DevOps-related practices.