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Virginia ABC Wins Commonwealth’s Prestigious Project Management Award

October 29, 2015

News Release Contact:

Jennifer Guild - (804) 325-8468
Email: jennifer.guild@abc.virginia.gov

Virginia ABC Wins Commonwealth’s Prestigious Project Management Award

The Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) recently won a 2015 Virginia Information Technologies Agency (VITA) Project Excellence Award at the agency’s 4th Annual Project Management Summit. Virginia ABC’s Point of Sale (POS) Environment Upgrade Project was recognized for its efficient and effective process in rolling out improvements to its store-level payment transaction system.

The initiative, which was completed in August 2015, allows Virginia ABC stores to process transactions more quickly and with a higher degree of security for patrons. Virginia ABC was the first agency in the state to begin utilizing point-to-point encryption, which safeguards credit card data by encrypting the information as soon as a customer swipes a card, protecting it as it travels across various processing networks.

“We managed a complicated project with a lot of concurrent moving parts very well,” said Virginia ABC Chief Information Officer Stephen Fox. “Getting more than 350 stores transitioned to a new system—one that is involved in every single business transaction—was no simple task. The success of this project was a direct result of the collaboration and dedication of staff in multiple divisions and our harmonious relationships with vendors.”

In addition to recognition for project management functions such as development, organization, analysis and evaluation, Virginia ABC’s POS project was highlighted for superiority in handling nine simultaneous procurement efforts. A panel of judges from the Central Virginia Chapter of the Project Management Institute gave Virginia ABC’s entry high marks on detail and clarity in documentation, change management, the correlation between goals and results and effective delivery of the product.

Virginia ABC’s POS system—made up of the register, server that records sales transactions and software that processes debit and credit card payments—is used at each of its 353 stores. In fiscal year 2015, Virginia ABC stores handled more than 29.7 million transactions.

The planning and research for the upgrade project began in April 2013. The goals were: to implement security enhancements that protect personal data for customers using cards to make purchases; to be in compliance with the new Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard chip and PIN requirement; and to provide store employees with a system and equipment that provides the best functionality possible.

“The VITA award is a tremendous recognition,” said Virginia ABC Commissioner Judy Napier. “The team should be very proud of not only the management of a project that has such a large impact on business operations, but also for implementing a system that allows us to provide a superior level of customer service while protecting financial information of citizens shopping in our stores.”


The Virginia Department of Alcoholic Beverage Control (ABC) is a major source of revenue for the commonwealth, contributing more than $1.8 billion to the general fund in the last five years. The agency currently operates 353 state stores. Its Bureau of Law Enforcement oversees more than 16,000 ABC licensed establishments while the Hearings and Appeals Division considers more than 700 cases each year. The agency also provides alcohol education and prevention programs for people of all ages. ABC is committed to progress and innovation in carrying out its control, service and revenue mission.

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