Watchdog calls on Social Security Administration to improve agile software development

The agency's IG made 12 recommendations for enhancing the agency's approach to software projects.
(Getty Images)

The Inspector General of the Social Security Administration last week published an audit probing the agency’s agile software development projects.

In its report, the watchdog identified improvements SSA should make to its development methodology including implementation of additional quality assurance controls.

“We identified opportunities for SSA to improve its decision making, gain efficiencies, and better position staff for success using the Agile development methodology,” wrote Gail S. Ennis, Inspector General of the Social Security Administration. 

“We made 12 recommendations to revise Agency guidance, policies, and procedures; leverage strategic-level portfolio planning capabilities; create standardized reports to be used for all Agile projects; and institute a program of executive-level Agile coaching,” Ennis added in the audit report.


The IG’s suggestions are intended to ensure that SSA reaps the benefits from agile development, including the production of higher quality software at a lower cost.

The former CIO of the General Services Administration told FedScoop last year that the federal government should prioritize agile methodologies not only in software development but in IT procurement, finance, budgeting and hiring as well.

Nihal Krishan

Written by Nihal Krishan

Nihal Krishan is a technology reporter for FedScoop. He came to the publication from The Washington Examiner where he was a Big Tech Reporter, and previously covered the tech industry at Mother Jones and Global Competition Review. In addition to tech policy, he has also covered national politics with a focus on the economy and campaign finance. His work has been published in the Boston Globe, USA TODAY, HuffPost, and the Arizona Republic, and he has appeared on NPR, SiriusXM, and PBS Arizona. Krishan is a graduate of Arizona State University’s Walter Cronkite School for Journalism. You can reach him at

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