Rob Brown & Robert Cole, US Citizenship and Immigration Services
Last year, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) adopted a new strategy to accelerate our transition to a digital business model. This eProcessing strategy connects previously siloed technology systems to provide a complete digital experience that will shorten decision timelines, increase transparency, and more efficiently handle the 8 million requests for immigration benefits the agency receives each year.
To pursue this strategy effectively, we had to rethink and overhaul our IT landscape, one that has much in common with those other large enterprises in both the public and private sectors. We had to move away from antiquated ETL processes and overnight batch processing. And we needed to move away from the jumble of ESB, message queues, and spaghetti-stringed direct connections that were used for interservice communication.
Today, eProcessing is powered by real-time event streaming with Apache Kafka and Confluent Platform. We are building out our data mesh with microservices, CDC, and an event-driven architecture. This common core platform has reduced the cognitive load on development teams, who can now spend more time on delivering quality code and new features, less on DevSecOps and infrastructure activities. As teams have started to align around this platform, a culture of reusability has grown. We’ve seen a reduction in duplication of effort -- in some cases by up to 50% -- across the organization from case management to risk and fraud.