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Case Study: Data

Project: Financial Analytics / Client: U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement


U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), an Operational and Support Component of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), is on a mission to protect America from the cross-border crime and illegal immigration that threaten national security and public safety. OPTiMO supports ICE through its Office of the Chief Financial Officer (OCFO), which resources and enables the ICE mission through the sound execution of the agency’s financial, budgetary, and asset management functions.

Within the OCFO, the Business Management Office (BMO) has a mission to provide ICE with a premier, repeatable, and reliable report process that enables leadership to make informed and deliberate resourcing decisions regarding its multi-sector workforce. This entails reviewing and analyzing data to automate financial and budget reports in a standardized and consistent manner. BMO places a high priority on verifying and validating data and identifying data inconsistencies as well as recommending edits and improvements to enhance consistency, understanding, and alignment of content within and across the numerous reports.

The Challenge:

BMO reports cover a wide range of topics and areas of interest. Normally urgent and complex, they require obtaining and verifying input from ICE program offices. The reports must be empirically accurate and defensible, as they become a matter of record.

OPTiMO was selected both to support BMO’s optimization of data processes and reports across the enterprise by assessing both the positive and negative in terms of the health of the OCFO’s operation as well as rebuild a core set of foundational reports.

The Solution:

Our team effectively embedded themselves within the BMO team, quickly ramping up on ICE financial policies and procedures and gaining an understanding of the operating culture. Our program and project managers provided exceptionally strong leadership, establishing working relationships and earning trust across all OCFO divisions. This enabled us to fully understand and engage in a range of complex and sensitive issues, while simultaneously balancing the enforcement of OCFO policies and fostering the maturity of core OCFO operations.

Highly adept at solving significant data challenges with outstanding quality standards, our team of data scientists, developers, and business analysts completely reverse engineered existing reporting and business processes. This smartly informed our development of a highly informative roadmap that demonstrated where data was correctly and incorrectly used. It also identified where data sources consumed across OCFO were re-used for multiple purposes, highlighting where more accurate and reliable options were available.

The exceptional quality of our data solutions along with the flexibility and dedicated support of our smart team has earned us the trust of OFCO stakeholders.

We then applied our comprehensive data expertise and roadmap strategy to “rebuild” a core set of foundational reports, further enhancing BMO’s automated reporting capabilities. Those reports have subsequently been refined over time and are used to inform decision making in critical operational areas, including position management, payroll management, contract management, system to system reconciliation, and the physical organization of positions.

OPTiMO also provides comprehensive metrics and inviting, understandable visualizations for direct use by OCFO leadership in conjunction with budget execution, position management, and payroll expenditures.

The Impact:

OPTiMO’s solutions and ongoing support have enabled the success of BMO reporting on numerous fronts. The BMO management team is trusting of and reliant on the business intelligence powered by the high-quality core analytics. Equally important, BMO is a trusted, true partner within the larger ICE organization, where division personnel both inside and outside the OCFO can bring their questions, problems, and ideas.

BMO’s enhanced data and reporting capabilities better enable ICE to achieve a balanced multi-sector workforce, advance a culture of cost effectiveness, and optimize mission effectiveness and efficiency.

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