• Northern Virginia Association of Realtors

    Northern Virginia Association of Realtors

    The Northern Virginia Association of REALTORS ® (NVAR) engaged Ursa Major Consulting to provide Joomla! expertise in supporting the transition to a new website.

    A usability study and brand design was done by WM Design Group.

    Ursa Major supported the high-traffic, high-content site in Joomla! for several years before its recent transition to integrate with a membership management soution.

  • The Law Offices of Mitchell Garabedian

    The Law Offices of Mitchell Garabedian

     

    The Law Offices of Mitchell Garabedian, a law firm specializing in sexual abuse cases, required a website that was responsive to quickly post breaking news of new settlements and media coverage. It was difficult to make changes to their previous site.

    We redeployed the website and added new capabilities, including embedded video and transcripts of press conferences, and improvements to search engine optimization (SEO).

    We continue to support the Law Offices of Mitchell Garabedian with site updates and improvements.

  • Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington, DC

    Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington, DC

     

    The Guild of Professional Tour Guides of Washington DC, a professional membership organization, required a website that provided members with up-to-date tourist site status on mobile devices, and online event registration and payment.

    The site incorporated the ability for Guild staff and other site users to manage a calendar and event registration, upload photos to the rotator, and maintain a directory of tour company affiliate members.  The public can request tour guides, who maintain their profiles including specialties and languages spoken. 

    We  received many kudos for the Joomla! website. 

  • JMA Solutions

    JMA Solutions

     

    JMA Solutions, an award-winning government contractor, wanted a site that highlighted their corporate capabilities and awards, advertised their job openings, and provided internal forms and documents for employees.

    Ursa Major provided quick turn-around on a conversion from the old website, trained the internal site administrators, and later upgraded the site.

    More recently, Ursa Major led an internal Website Refresh group at JMA Solutions to refresh the site and provide a feature on the front page for current announcements.

  • Talltree South Condominium Association

    Talltree South Condominium Association

     

    Talltree South, an award-winning condo community association, provides its owners and tenants handbook, including rules and regulations,in searchable form via its website. Newsletters, e-mail and e-mail-to-text notices, and a window to its Google calendar are also provided to enhance communication with owners and tenants.

    Ursa Major constructed the site in Joomla! 1.5 and later upgraded it to 2.5 and then 3.x.  The content-rich site is very functional. Plans are to update its look in the coming year.

  • NOVA Housing and Supportive Services

    NOVA Housing and Supportive Services

    The Virginia Housing and Supportive Services' Northern Virginia Regional Implementation Team (NoVA RIT) educates individuals, families and service providers about integrated, independent housing and housing resources. 

    Ursa Major Consulting created its Housing Resource Guide website. The Resource Guide incorporates a database on apartment complexes, housing resources and programs, and provides videos and webinars as part of a toolkit to help individuals move to independent housing.

    The site was created using Joomla! and associated components. New housing resources and programs can be submitted for approval by members of the public and administered by the NoVA RIT.

     

  • Delta Consulting Group

    Delta Consulting Group

    Delta Consulting Group, an international consulting firm, needed a new website that featured its professionals.

    Delta's experts provide consulting and expert witness services in delay, damage and defects analysis, forensic accounting, loss of productivity, and related services on multifaceted litigation and arbitration cases around the world. 

    Their professionals consult on project controls, construction audits, planning and scheduling, and budget analysis.

    Ursa Major developed the website using Joomla 3, using Zoo for the directory of professionals.  Their content is administered by an in-house staff, supported by Ursa Major as needed.

     

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Just a little placeholder to let the world know that we are alive and kicking despite neglecting update of this website!

Working hard on a wide variety of efforts, including:

Published in Ursa Major News

The Virginia Housing and Supportive Services Consortium (HSS) is an inter-agency collaboration supporting planning for integrated community-based housing opportunities and supportive services for individuals with intellectual and/or developmental disabilities (ID/DD). The HSS Consortium includes:

  • Virginia Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services (DBHDS)
  • Virginia Department of Housing and Community Development (DHCD)
  • Virginia Department of Medical Assistance Services (DMAS), and
  • Virginia Housing Development Authority (VHDA).

On January 7, 2015, the HSS Consortium convened a meeting with regional and state-wide stakeholders to initiate collaborative planning, incuding the regions of Northern Virginia, Hampton Roads, and the Richmond metropolitan area. Additional regional meetings are planned, leading up to a Summit anticipated in May 2015 to achieve and sustain rapid results and increased options for housing and services choice for people with ID/DD.

Ursa Major Consulting is pleased to be supporting the HSS Consortium. We worked witth Catoctin Consulting, Rapid Results Institute, and TAC, Inc. in this effort, and are now continuing with the development of the Housing Resource Guide (2017).

 

Published in Disability Domain

We are pleased to announce that we are assisting Virginia Industries for the Blind (VIB) with their strategic planning effort.

VIB is is a division of the Virginia Department for the Blind and Vision Impaired (DBVI), and provides employment opportuniities for Virginians who are blind or visually impaired in two manufacturing plants, eleven base supply stores, and six service locations. They have diverse contracts with federal agencies through the AbilityOne Program (e.g., contract management and closeout services for the U. S. Army), contracts through State Agency agreements such as  the Virginia Court Debt Collection Office, the Department of Motor Vehicles, and the Virginia Employment Commission, and manufacture items as diverse as mattresses for the U. S. Navy and state colleges and universities and reflective vests for the Virginia Department of Trnsportation.

Given the improvements in assistive technology and more ambitious expectations of young people who are blind and people who lose their sight after gaining work experience, VIB is exploring ways to attract workers who are looking for more than traditional product manufacturing. In fact, some of VIB's experienced contract closeout employees have already been hired by the government, which is quite a successful outcome for those people.

We look forward to helping VIB plan the modernization of its business to meet the evolving needs of people who are blind or vision impaired.

 

 

Published in Ursa Major News

Goodwill-South-Florida-logoWe are pleased to announce that we are assisting Goodwill Industries of South Florida in implementation of new case management software. Goodwill is dedicated to providing rehabilitation, on-the-job training, work experience, and placement services to help people with disabilities and special needs overcome barriers to employment and become employed in the community. Goodwill of South Florida is one of the largest Goodwills in the country and serves a diverse population.

The anticipated benefits from this change include:

  • Streamlined processes
  • Reduced redundant work
  • Better data and improved ability to access data on clients, programs, and services provided, both for daily operations and for strategic decisions
  • Better insights into outcomes achieved, and
  • Improved and easier reporting.

With Catoctin Consulting, we will assist Goodwill with the change process, from requirement validation and planning onward. We look forward to working closely with them to make this effort a success!

Published in Ursa Major News

A major passion of ours is advocacy for employment and other opportunities for people with disabilities. For example:

  • Disability employment research.  We have experience conducing research related to the employment of people with severe disabilities.   We have analyzed Social Security, census, and other employment data on incentives and barriers to work and have written policy papers for the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Advisory Panel.
  • Policy and program improvements. We understand disability employment programs and the barriers faced by people with disabilities who want to work, yet are afraid of losing their benefits, supports, and healthcare. We have  planned and facilitated meetings focused on legislative advocacy.
  • Facilitation-summit-318Enabling Voices for Change. We planned and facilitated the first ever Beneficiary Summit for Social Security disability beneficiaries from every state and territory of the U.S. We facilitated a series of in-person and teleconference planning meetings with a committee of Federal staff and beneficiaries, designing and developing background white papers and read-ahead materials, designing agendas, coordinating conference calls to prepare participants. In this three day summit, we facilitated six concurrent session tracks and out-briefs to the full group. We developed a report of summit results that was presented to the President, Congress, and the Commissioner of SSA. The final report, "Voices for Change: Beneficiaries Paving the Way to Work, A Roadmap to Program Improvement", is available here: Beneficiary Summit Report with Photos.
  • Nonprofit funding mechanisms. We are familiar with the challenges faced by nonprofit organizations in identifying, capturing, and applying funding streams to support their programs and implement practices that result in a quality work environment. We researched and compiled sources of funding including Federal, state / local, and private / foundation funding that could potentially be available to fund employment supports and services for people with disabilities.
  • Quality Work Environment (QWE). We supported development of a clearinghouse of good practices for a quality work environment for people with disabilities, and supported development of the QWE Implementation Plan and the QWE Guidebook for the AbilityOne Program.
  • Information systems. We have worked with nonprofit organizations across the country to develop requirements for and support development of the Employee Research System (ERS), to provide employee-level data on outcomes for employment of people with disabilities, and are now supporting system deployment. 
  • Collaborative websites. We developed the website for the Institute for Economic Empowerment, a research institute focused on employment of people with disabilities, and the website for the Alliance for Full Participation, a partnership of leading developmental disabilities organizations.

Contact us to learn more.

Published in Disability Domain

Image of Summit Report CoverOn February 6 and 7, 2007, Voices for Change: Beneficiaries Paving the Way to Work,  a summit planned by and for Social Security disability beneficiaries, was conducted in Atlanta, Georgia by the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Advisory Panel (Panel).We worked hard on making this Summit happen, and the resulting report, Voices for Change: Beneficiaries Paving the Way to Work captured the views of the participants who hailed from every state and territory of the United States.

Unfortunately, that report and the other reports of the Ticket to Work and Work Incentives Advisory Panel are no longer available on the Social Security Administration's website. Does that mean the recommendations have been addressed? Do beneficiaries have greater input into these programs?  Not that I know of.

Read the report again!

Published in Disability News
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