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Second Review of a New Data Management System for the Social Security Aciministration A Report to the Social Security Administration Department of Health' Education and Welfare by the Pane! on Social Security Administration Data Management System Board on Telecommunications Computer Applications Assembly of Engineering National Research Council NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES Washington, D.C. 1979
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NOTICE The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Governing Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the Councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This report has been reviewed by a group other than the authors according to procedures approved by a Report Review Committee consisting of members of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, and the Institute of Medicine. This report represents work under Contract 600-78-0050 between the National Academy of Sciences and the Social Security Administration. Copies of this publication are available, under accession number NRC/TELECOM/79/1, from National Technical Information Service Department of Commerce 5825 Port Royal Road Springfield, Virginia 22161 Printed in the United States of America ii
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Preface This report is the second in a continuing review of the planning being done by the Social Security Administration (SSA) to develop a new data management system to support its service delivery process. The review was undertaken at the request of the Social Security Administration, and follows by one year a review by a similar panel of the Board on Telecommunications-Computer Applications, National Research Council. That panelts report, Review of a New Data Management System for the Social Security Administration, published in 1978, examined the planning done by the SSA through 1977 and discussed such technical issues as data base design. This second report reviews the planning done through 1978 and deals with issues that have more of a management and planning orientation. For each review, the panel consisted of 12 members, 8 of whom participated in both reviews. The second panel was asked to assist the Social Security Administration by examining such aspects of the agency's effort as: privacy and security, project control, and the development of plans for system design and for system transition. During 1978, the members review-cd the effort with the SSA staff at six panel meetings and numerous subpanel meetings. The report begins with an introduction and summary of the panel's principal findings and recommendations. Chapter II provides the back- ground about the subject, delineates the dimensions of the SSAts data management problem, summarizes the major conclusions of the panel's first review, and describes the federal government's policies for acquiring large computer systems. Chapter III concerns the SSA's strategy for acquiring its new system and its need for project manage- ment planning. Chapter IV develops in some detail the options available to the SSA as it plans for the transition from the present process to a future one. Chapter V concentrates on the importance of incorporating privacy and security safeguards in the new system. Finally, in Chapter VI the panel discusses some significant human factors issues. The panel has benefited greatly from open, frank, and informative discussions with officials and staff of the SSA. Appreciation is expressed, in particular, to Stanford Ross, Commissioner of Social Security, Don Wortman, Acting Commissioner during part of the review, and Robert B. Bynum, the Associate Commissioner for Program Operations during the period of the review, as well as to Ray Lannon, the Director iii
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of the Office of Advanced Systems, and to Renny DiPentima, the Project Officer. The panel is grateful to them and their associates for guiding the panel toward an understanding of the nation's social security process and for their receptivity to new ideas and alternative approaches. Several members of the panel called on colleagues for contributions to this review. The panel is indebted, accordingly, to the following: Bob Cant of MCI Telecommunications Corp., Neil Lamb of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, Richard Matteis of Citibank, and Richard Snowden of the American Telephone and Telegraph Company. While the panel acknowledges the valuable contributions of these people in its review, the conclusions and recommendations presented in this report are its own. 1V
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Members, Pane! on Social Security Administration Data Management System Louis T. Rader (Chairman) Professor of Electrical Engineering and Business Administration University of Virginia J. C. R. Licklider (Deputy Chairman) Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Massachusetts Institute of Technology Ted E. Climis Vice President, Development, General Products Division IBM Corporation Lee L. Davenport* Vice President-Chief Scientist General Telephone & Electronics Corporation Jerome I. Elkind Vice President, Advanced Systems Development Xerox Corporation - Stuart J. Evans Director of Procurement National Aeronautics and Space Administration John C. Gibson Secretary/Director of Education Hartford Insurance Group V. E. Herzfeld Vice President, Sperry-Univac Business Planning and Development Billy B. Oliver Vice President, Engineering Planning American Telephone & Telegraph Company *ex officio as Chairman, Board on Telecommunications-Computer Applications v
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Bert C. Roberts, Jr. Senior Vice President, Corporate Planning & Development MCI Telecommunications Corporation Willis H. Ware Corporate Research Staff Rand Corporation Robert B. White Executive Vice President Citibank Staff: Frank M. Snyder, Staff Director R. V. Mrozinski, Deputy Staff Director Clara E. Robertson, Administrative Secretary vi
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Members, Board on Telecommunications- Computer Applications Lee L. Davenport (Chairman) Vice President-Chief Scientist General Telephone ~ Electronics Corporation Louis T. Rader (Deputy Chairman) Professor of Electrical Engineering and Business Administration University of Virginia Ted E. Climis Vice President, General Products Division IBM Corporation Martin Cooper Vice President-General Manager Motorola. Inc. Robert R. Everett President The Mitre Corporation J. C. R. Licklider Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science Massachusetts Institute of Technology Robert D. Maurer Manager, Special Projects Corning &lass Works R & D Laboratories Lawrence G. Roberts Chairman of the Board Telenet Communications Corporation Tan M. Ross President Bell Telephone Laboratories Joseph E. Rowe Vice President, Technology Harris Corporation Or. Herbert Sherman Associate Director for Technology Center for the Analysis of Health Practices Harvard School of Public Health Willis H. Ware Corporate Research Staff Rand Corporation vii
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Staff: R. V. Mrozinski, Executive Director Frank M. Snyder, Deputy Executive Director E. Gaspard-Michel, Administrative Assistant Gwynne S. Ellsworth, Administrative Secretary Clara E. Robertson, Administrative Secretary viii
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Contents (CHAPTER I: INTRODUCTION AND SUMMARY 1 CHAPTER II: BACKGROUND 5 The Existing System Planning a Future System Panel Reviews Federal Procurement of Major Computer Systems 6 CHAPTER III: SYSTEM ACQUISITION 10 Acquisition Strategy Planning for Acquisition The Management Plan The Project Plan Project Control Recommendations 10 11 13 13 14 15 CHAPTER IV: TRANSITION PLANNING 17 The Significance of Transition Problems of Transition Framework for Consideration of Transition Problems Alternative Approaches to Transition Conversion of the Data Base Criteria for Evaluating Transition Plans Conclusions and Recommendations Transition Guidelines 17 17 18 21 25 27 29 30 CHAPTER V: PRIVACY AND SECURITY 32 CHAPTER VI: HUMAN FACTORS 34 The Needs of Clients Human Factors in Acquisition REFERENCES APPENDIX: TEMPORARY FEDERAL PROCUREMENT REGULATION 47 GLOSSARY 35 36 38 39 44 ix
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