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Atlassian + DHCS

The big win with Atlassian is communicating agency needs and engineering execution, and bridging the two. It helps us narrow our focus into what’s most important to the business.

Ryan Mosley, Chief of Factory & Engineering Modernization

$2.2 M

Saved on one project alone using Atlassian Cloud Enterprise


Faster delivery on the same project with Atlassian


User target – one of the largest agencies on Atlassian cloud

About DHCS

The mission of DHCS is to provide Californians with access to affordable, integrated, high-quality health care, including medical, dental, mental health, substance use treatment services and long-term care. Their vision is to preserve and improve the overall health and well-being of all Californians.




California, Americas

Number of Users


California’s Department of Health Care Services modernized and saved millions with Atlassian Cloud Enterprise

Challenge: DHCS used many tools to collaborate, plan, and deliver technology projects. This made it harder to work cross-functionally, find and share information, and achieve the agency’s goals.

Solution: DHCS centralized with Atlassian and upgraded to an Enterprise Cloud plan. With more than 1,000 active users and counting, DHCS is targeting 4000 users by the end of 2024 as the largest California state agency on Atlassian Cloud Enterprise.

Impact: With better processes and platforms, teams across DHCS have improved speed, service, savings, visibility, and collaboration. On one project alone, they delivered 66% faster and saved $2.2 million.

An established agency faces obstacles – and opportunities – on their meaningful mission

Siloes and outdated technology hinder even the most advanced government thinkers and ambitious doers – a challenge the California Department of Health Care Services (DHCS) was feeling firsthand. Each division was running toward their goals, but with disparate tools and processes, many felt like they were running in different directions.

Seeing opportunity in these challenges, the DHCS Modernization Factory and Engineering Chief Ryan Mosley and Atlassian Enterprise Advocate Elisa Aviles-Bodoin began to explore a golden solution for the Golden State: standardizing with Atlassian cloud tools to accelerate progress toward their purpose of providing equitable access to quality health care leading to a healthy California for all.

Modernizing and standardizing saves $2.2 million on one project alone

DHCS had been lightly using Jira Software Cloud and Confluence Cloud for years, along with an assortment of other tools including an outdated version of SharePoint. When the agency started adopting agile methodologies and added more Atlassian licenses, usage began to grow organically. 

As more people embraced Atlassian tools, DHCS’s Modernization Team saw that employees were working faster, collaborating more, and uncovering new ways to better serve each other and residents across the state. When Ryan showed leaders how employees were using Atlassian and how the team could improve portfolio management for the entire organization by standardizing on the platform, they were all on board. 

“Usage started expanding to multiple sections and programs  within and outside of the Modernization team,” Ryan says. “Once the Modernization Team’s communication and delivery provided new levels of transparency and real-time information to the Director’s Office, it became more of a conscious decision [to standardize on Atlassian].”

To support adoption, Ryan’s team collaborated with DHCS Enterprise Architect Joe Chavez, Jira Administrator Christine Corona, and Atlassian Enterprise Advocate Elisa Aviles-Bodoin on a simple change management strategy. “Change management is not something we have standing resources to support, so we tapped into early adopters and let them evangelize the tools. We also have Atlassian community meetings where we discuss challenges that people are dealing with,” Ryan explains.

As more divisions started working on the same modern platform, teams found it easier to collaborate and work faster, leading to significant savings. “One project took 18 months to get up and running. After adopting Atlassian and learning more valuable ways to use the tools, the next one took six months. By tracking everything in Jira and all of our developer tools, we reduced the cost to get the team set up and deliver the product from $2.8 million to $600,000,” Ryan says. 

With usage growing, the DHCS Modernization Team opted to standardize with Atlassian cloud products for scalability, centralized administration and governance, enterprise-grade security, and dedicated support. After starting with Confluence and Jira Software Cloud Premium, DHCS upgraded to an Enterprise plan in 2021. They have already increased to 4,000 users, which makes DHCS one of the largest government agencies on Atlassian Cloud Enterprise. 

One project took 18 months to get up and running. After adopting Atlassian and learning more valuable ways to use the tools, the next one took six months. By tracking everything in Jira and all of our dev tools, we reduced the cost to get the team set up and deliver the product from $2.8 million to $600,000.”

Ryan Mosley
Chief of Factory & Engineering Modernization

Freeing up resources to focus on work that matters most

With a central, cloud-based source of truth and collaboration platform for thousands of users, divisions across DHCS have seen improvements in their areas of focus. Leaders in the Director’s Office can also track progress and programs at the portfolio level. IT has been particularly excited about advancements in their main initiatives: security and privacy, maintenance and operations, governance, and portfolio management.

1. Security and privacy

With Jira Software, the teams have a more comprehensive view of the agency’s security levels and any risks within systems and data. Now that DHCS is on the Atlassian cloud, they don’t have to worry about server maintenance. “I’ve had to maintain server infrastructure in the past. It’s not pleasant,” says Technical Product Manager and DevOps evangelist Jeff Garrett. “Being on Atlassian Cloud Enterprise means we don’t have to do that anymore. Plus, we can add and remove applications quickly.”

2. Maintenance and operations

IT has enjoyed moving to centralized management and monitoring in the cloud, as well as using Jira Software for tracking and testing (with the help of the Xray Test Management app).

3. Enterprise Governance

DHCS has centralized and improved governance with the help of Atlassian Cloud Enterprise. “These tools help us facilitate the governance conversation. They support the visibility of what we’re doing and allow us to grow and mature,” Ryan says.

Integrating Atlassian tools with each other and IT’s other productivity tools like Slack has created even more efficiencies, improved knowledge management, and made scaling easier.

 “We try not to bury things inside Jira issues. If we fix a bug, we extract that information into Confluence and surface it for others. We publish changes from Confluence and Jira into Slack too, which makes it even easier to search for tickets while I’m chatting with someone,” Joe explains. “There’s also a number of small projects where they’ve been able to scale, for example, from a team of one to five using a Confluence space to write down what they do and share it with new team members.” Ryan adds, “Overall, people can find what they need when they need it, instead of waiting for the next meeting. It’s definitely helped us eliminate meetings.”

Less time spent on meetings and management means IT can focus on what they do best: enabling technology that helps the agency better serve the citizens of California.

I’ve had to maintain server infrastructure in the past. It’s not pleasant. Being on Atlassian Cloud Enterprise means we don’t have to do that anymore. Plus, we can add and remove applications quickly.”

Jeff Garrett
Technical Product Manager

Bridging IT and business for successful portfolio management

Beyond IT, business and program teams are enjoying Atlassian tools just as much – proof that Modernization’s early adopter strategy is working. “The business teams, like Communications, are really happy with the fact that we could stand up a work management template project so quickly, and they can be on their way,” Christine explains. Ryan adds, “Jira helps us have repeatable processes. The Contracts Team uses Jira to track procurements, so now I can see when a procurement is going to be finalized and when resources are going to hit the ground.”

These improvements in visibility have been invaluable when it comes to portfolio management. “The big win with Atlassian is communicating business needs and engineering execution, and bridging the two,” Ryan says. “It helps us narrow our focus into what’s most important to the business. From the portfolio view, we can see the timeline to deliver a technical initiative, then drill all the way down to the dev teams that are delivering on those goals, as well as see from the bottom up. From the portfolio management standpoint, it's really helped that communication from the program to the technical level.”

From elevating security and speed, to making information easier to find, use, and share, DHCS is seeing vast improvements for teams of all types and all tiers.

Improving the health of the agency and the citizens it serves

Optimizing DHCS’s platforms and processes with Atlassian Cloud Enterprise has not only helped improve visibility, collaboration, and delivery at the individual and team levels, but also increased speed and savings for the agency.

Now that Jira Software and Confluence Cloud are DHCS’ single source of truth, the agency is planning to expand their Atlassian platform to include Opsgenie for alerting and on-call management, Statuspage for incident management, and Jira Align to link strategy to execution so they can enhance service delivery to the state’s residents: the heart of their work.

“Bringing the business and technology together to deliver on our initiatives is the core of success,” Ryan says. “Adding to our Atlassian tool set will contribute to our evolution here at DHCS and make sure we’re all moving in the same direction and focused on the most important initiatives. It’s only going to help our organization become more efficient at delivering those services to Californians.”

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