Opinion: Not sure how contractors did not expect the site traffic (volume). Besides that, the contractors do have very valid points.
- If true, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) did not allow enough time for end-to-end testing. With a website that will receive thousands of queries per hour, there should have been months of testing to ensure the system would work together and work under heavy volumes.
- If true, CMS should not have been requested changes after the website requirements were agreed and even worst a few days prior to launch. There are typically 6 steps of software/code development (in order): 1. gather requirements, 2. plan the project, 3. design software, 4. implement, 5. test and verify, 6. maintain and update the software. The new requirement should have been done at the beginning not at step 4-5 in the process. Having said that, the contractors should not have allowed the change without there being additional time added before the website rollout. If the rollout time was firm then the new requirements would have to move to step 6, maintain and update.