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States find the support they need for WIC MIS modernization

Challenge

The US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Services (FNS) Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) aims to increase efficiencies and cost-effectiveness across states by encouraging collaboration and system reuse. Known as the State Agency Model (SAM), the initiative focuses on planning, development, and deployment of model management information systems (MIS) in WIC state agencies (SAs).

As a member of a four-state consortium experiencing inertia stemming from their current Maintenance and Enhancement (M&E) contract, the state contracted with BerryDunn to lead the Product Management Office (PMO), provide strategic guidance, and move the MIS forward.

Solution

BerryDunn’s approach to strengthening the consortium and further developing the MIS began with a risk assessment to understand the current state of operations and existing impediments. The BerryDunn team:

  • Participated in committee meetings prior to assuming leadership of the PMO to learn about the culture of the consortium
  • Met with each state in the consortium individually, as well as the M&E contractor and FNS, to establish a baseline of the existing gaps and obtain each stakeholder’s current view of the consortium
  • Developed a project management plan

Outcome

Now, the multi-state consortium has:

  • Prioritized outstanding change requests and system defects
  • Created clear expectations of the M&E vendor
  • Revitalized governance and performance documents along with an RFP for a new M&E vendor
  • Strategized to develop a roadmap for system enhancements and to create a marketable WIC MIS consortium that other states want to join, enabling additional efficiencies and cost sharing

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