As we approach the long-awaited launch of CJAMS, let’s take a moment to acknowledge some of our dedicated trainers. The training team has worked tirelessly since May 2019 to ensure all staff at Washington County have been properly trained on the CJAMS system and will continue providing instruction until all counties are ready for the transition. You might recognize these faces when CJAMS comes to your county.
Now, without further ado…meet a few of our CJAMS trainers!
Adnan Khan has been the Organizational Change Management (OCM) Training and Readiness Leader since December 2018. His strengths include building training plans and strategies as well as delivering training for all CJAMS topics. Adnan loves playing guitar, building training plans and strategies, and delivering training for all CJAMS subjects. His favorite quote is “Believe in yourself…even when others don’t.”
Aftabur Rahman is a Trainer, Technical Writer and Scrum Master for MD THINK’s OCM team. He has been with MD THINK since February 2019 and provides training on Assessments, Removal, Permanency, and Adoption (to name a few). He enjoys hiking and believes that through failure comes true strength.
Eugene Hildebrand III trains on all CJAMS topics. He is a six-year veteran with SSA and has strong experience as a System Learning Administrator. Eugene spends his time away from the office coaching track – something he enjoys tremendously.
Jeffrey Lynne holds the title of CJAMS Program Manager. His goal is to ensure that all SSA staff receive training to help them navigate CJAMS and provide ongoing support during the transition to a new system. He has been with SSA since June 2008 and enjoys swimming!
Logan Buccolo is a System Learning Administrator and Certified Scrum Master. Logan has worn many hats since joining SSA seven years ago, but he currently trains on all CJAMS topics (with the exception of finance). His quote to live by is “With great power…comes a great electricity bill,” (HA!). Logan enjoys reading and playing with his four children.
Melanie Rowe-Partridge is a Trainer with OCM who has previous experience as a Child Support caseworker in Maryland. Melanie has been with MD THINK for 10 months and focuses on Screening and Out-of-Home Placement. She loves music, the beach (and music on the beach!), and looks forward to meeting all future CJAMS users!
Melissa Lopes, a System Learning Administrator with SSA, brings seven years of experience to the training team. She teaches Intake, CPS, In-Home/Family Preservation, and more! Melissa enjoys traveling and, in relation to training, believes that any training that does not include the emotions, mind, and body is incomplete because knowledge fades without feeling.”
Monica B. Lewis is a 9-month veteran of the OCM training team. She presents Finance and CJAMS Child Welfare Assessments. On a typical Friday evening, you can find Monica lounging, enjoying a chocolate martini and listening to smooth jazz. Monica wants everyone to know that when the best is getting better, good is no longer good enough!
Vinnie Rege joined the OCM team in May 2019 as a Trainer and provides instruction for Family Preservation as well as Placement and Permanency. Vinnie thinks you should make things happen instead of waiting, and he enjoys football (go Ravens!), reading, and watching his son play soccer.
These and other trainers are here to help guide workers in transition through specialized CJAMS training. The team is eager to provide this training to future counties and they look forward to meeting every CJAMS user. Let’s give them a hand!
Ditch the pen and paper! CJAMS’ eSignature feature allows caseworkers to capture electronic signatures from anywhere with an internet connection. The eSignature feature reduces the need for paper documentation and provides staff with more flexibility while working in the field.
With just a swipe of the finger, a caseworker can obtain signatures on the spot for documents like assessments and permanency plans. The ability to e-sign documents reduces paper waste and frees caseworkers to pursue other tasks.
Completing documents with eSignatures is one of many time-saving features available in CJAMS. Stay connected for a look at other useful caseworker features in CJAMS.
Have you heard? A new feature in CJAMS allows workers to reroute a pending case, assessment, or other case information for approval when their primary supervisor is unavailable. CJAMS gives workers the flexibility to select an alternative team supervisor to review and approve cases when necessary. Check out this image of the dashboard workers will see when rerouting cases. This new feature ensures that cases always move efficiently from submission to approval. Upon returning, primary supervisors will resume receiving cases from their workers. Workers need not worry when their supervisor is out of the office. Thanks to CJAMS, rerouting cases doesn’t have to be complicated. Routing cases to available supervisors means more ability to focus on the children and families of Maryland.
Attendees at last week’s Maryland Association of Social Services Directors (MASSD) Joint Affiliate Conference had the opportunity to preview MD THINK’s new cloud-based platform in a movie trailer coming soon to your computer monitor. MD THINK received great feedback on CJAMS, its functionality, and the progress it has made over the last several months.
Held September 18-20, the MASSD Conference hosted DHS executive leadership teams from all local departments. With a theme of, “Be the Change – Transitioning To Greatness!,” this year’s conference allowed attendees the opportunity to hear from expert speakers, attend workshops, and take away valuable information to improve program management. The conference provided participants the tools needed to put their newly-learned knowledge and valuable resources into practice. With this vital information, Directors and Assistant Directors are can begin preparing staff to transition to the new CJAMS platform.
CJAMS’ “My Tasks” section helps LDSS Workers faced with heavy workloads stay on top of their duties and remain organized while multitasking. Displayed on the Case Worker’s dashboard, the “My Tasks” section shows the status of every customer’s case and indicates when outstanding tasks are scheduled for completion (for example, SAFE-C Assessment). Entries in the “My Tasks” section also display the case number, head of household, and the status of the task within a 90-day period. CJAMS’ “My Tasks” section will help LDSS workers better manage their caseloads and complete important tasks in a timely manner. Organizing tasks in one convenient place on the Case Worker’s dashboard helps streamline operations and improve customer service.
Case workload management is one of the most important responsibilities a Supervisor must face when handling staff assignments and distributing tasks. Supervisors can manage client cases more efficiently in CJAMS with the new Workload tab. Now Supervisors’ dashboards include case status organized by Open, Closed, and Total cases. The case summary allows Supervisors to view individual workloads, providing the ability to distribute case assignments evenly to Case Workers. Pie charts offer Supervisors a visual representation of case statistics, providing an easy-to-follow reference when assigning cases. The Workload tab in the Supervisor Dashboard is just another way CJAMS helps LDSS staff perform their duties efficiently and effectively, supporting the mission of keeping Maryland’s children and families safe!
LDSS staff will notice many familiar features for workload management are still available in CJAMS. The ability to scan, upload and print documents in CJAMS is important for LDSS Workers. These functions keep paperwork organized within the application, reducing the need to transport and carry loose papers and documents while responding to individuals in need of assistance. Staff can scan and upload documents into the Documents tab as well as print assessments from the Assessments tab. These great features help ensure the transition to CJAMS is a successful one. Stay tuned for more exciting CJAMS news and updates!
When CPS Workers respond to a case, safety is a top priority. CJAMS has a new feature that allows Workers to stay safe while in the field. Intake workers using CJAMS will see a “Danger to Worker?” option when adding a person to a new intake. If risk is indicated, the Intake Worker enters information that shows CPS Workers what to expect as they respond to a case. This option is a valuable tool to keep LDSS staff safe while providing services to clients in the field. In CJAMS, if the Worker’s wellbeing may be compromised, a notification will display in red text in the case summary reviewed by the CPS Worker. The “Danger to Worker” feature better equips CPS Workers with information to protect themselves while providing needed services to the community.
When using a new system like CJAMS, reporting an issue quickly when a problem is experienced is important because it helps create a stable, fully functional environment. Our goal during the rollout period is to address all system issues as quickly as possible from within CJAMS. In CJAMS, every end-user has the ability to submit a ticket directly to the support team using the Contact Support button. Since field testing began, staff have been using the Contact Support button to submit tickets faster through CJAMS than they were able to in CHESSIE. Additionally, the MD CHESSIE Super User will no longer be the only staff submitting work order tickets; CJAMS allows any worker with a login to utilize the Contact Support feature. CJAMS users can submit policy questions, gaps, and enhancements in addition to reporting defects. Contact Support reporting is essential to creating a fast, efficient application that will provide the most benefit to any LDSS staff using CJAMS.
Assessments are a considerable part of gathering case information. In CJAMS, all case assessments are accessible from one tab, making it a convenient access point for Case Workers. Some assessments have been improved; the MFRA, or the Maryland Family Risk Assessment, has been redesigned and bears the new name MFIRA (Maryland Family Initial Risk Assessment). The MFIRA and the CANS-F (Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths – Family) have radio buttons that streamline the process without much narrative. For Case Workers, assessments are an important part of their responsibilities. CJAMS provides a way to help them stay organized without unnecessary time and energy that could be spent focusing on the ultimate goal — to support and protect the children and families in Maryland.
On August 6th, six Washington County DSS team members gave a CJAMS demonstration to Secretary Padilla and the Maryland Association of Social Services Departments (MASSD) members. For most of the local Directors, it was their first glimpse of the CJAMS system and all it has to offer. The demo was based on two real-life case scenarios – a Family Preservation CPS case with a service plan and fiscal component, and a Placement and Permanency adoption case. The Washington team represented all roles – Intake, Supervisor, CPS, Adoption and Fiscal – and they handed off to each other as they moved through the workflow process. Local Directors were engaged, asking questions as the team demonstrated how to create a new intake, add a person, complete an assessment, and many other key process steps. The response from the Directors was very positive as they witnessed firsthand how CJAMS supports the Child Welfare workflow with a logical, user-friendly design.
The ability to search for individuals, addresses, cases, and providers is essential to your daily work and should be a simple, efficient process. In CJAMS, with just a few clicks of your mouse, you’ll have this critical information at your fingertips. The search menu is located on your taskbar and you can search from anywhere in CJAMS. For example, when searching for a person, results will include demographic information such as gender, date of birth, Social Security Number, and other identifying factors like first, middle, and last name. You can also view prior case history for an individual. Finding the information you need shouldn’t be complicated. The search feature in CJAMS gives you the tools you need to find what you’re looking for.
Uploading and attaching documents to a case is critical to case management and documentation. CJAMS will provide the ability to upload a document and attach it to a specific point in the case, rather than to the case in general. Cases in CJAMS are organized by tabs; for example, you can go to the Health tab to attach medical documents. The documents are still part of the aggregate case, so you can view all attachments or just the ones for a specific tab. This is another way CJAMS will help save you time and make your job easier!
Today’s Topic: CJAMS In Action – Case Worker Dashboard In a previous “Jam,” we wrote about the CJAMS Dashboard and how it can be tailored, giving workers a personalized feel and enabling them to perform their jobs more efficiently. This “CJAMS in Action” video highlights a few of CJAMS’ new dashboard features and shows you just how simple it will be to access, navigate, and personalize the case layout within CJAMS — putting a fresh, new take on day-to-day organization and work. More “CJAMS in Action” videos will be coming soon to provide you a closer look into CJAMS’ features and functionality. (Please note: the screens you see in the video are subject to change as CJAMS continues to be updated during field testing.)
How many times have you seen duplicate addresses in the system that are just slightly different from one another? How many times have you traveled to an address to find that it does not exist? CJAMS will have a built-in address verification tool called SmartyStreets that will help improve data quality and minimize incorrect addresses. The tool is automatic. When you type an address into CJAMS, a suggested address in official USPS format will pop up, giving you the option to select that address or continue to use the one you are typing. This is one of many CJAMS features that will save you time and help make your job easier!
The Dashboard is a significant feature of the Child, Juvenile and Adult Management System (CJAMS). It is the first screen that appears when Intake Workers,Case Workers, and Supervisors log in to the system and is the starting point for them to perform their daily work. The first time workers access CJAMS, their default Dashboard page will appear showing their assigned tasks. Dashboards can be customized to the specific needs of the worker. For example, the Case Worker Dashboard screen can show the ‘My IR INTAKE’ section at the top of the screen, displaying the number of IR cases currently assigned. The “To-Do” and “My Task” sections can also be added to help with task management. These and other upcoming features make the Dashboard an efficient one-stop landing spot! Note: The screenshots provided are subject to change as CJAMS continues field testing.
How many times have you been interrupted when you were writing the details of your report and later found it difficult to recall the specifics of the event or even to decipher the notes that you had quickly jotted down? Well, CJAMS will help with that! It can turn your voice into text, so you can dictate your narrative statements and notes. Just imagine how much time you will save speaking directly into your computer or smartphone to document case information rather than having to type it. CJAMS’ dictation feature will provide a faster, easier way to document case information, especially when using a mobile device. To enter your narrative, simply click on the “Narrative” button in CJAMS and a text box will appear. Then, click on the microphone at the bottom of the screen and start speaking—it’s that simple! If you need to edit your narrative, no problem. Changes can be made until the narrative is approved by a supervisor. We all know how critical accurate documentation is. CJAMS will make it easy and will enable you to complete your daily tasks more efficiently. In CJAMS, it’s a good thing to be a “dictator!”
One of CJAMS’ most valuable features is the ability to access the system from mobile devices so it can be used in the field. However, this is not the only capability that will make work faster and easier for Child Welfare and Adult Services employees. Check out the other features CJAMS has in store:
Dashboards to help manage caseloads;
Alerts and notifications to remind and prompt;
More ways to find client information;
Upload and attach documents to a specific point in the case;
Voice to text function (i.e. user dictates and system types the text in narrative fields); and Much, much more!
CJAMS moved into a new phase this week when Washington County LDSS began testing the Child Welfare modules from their office in Western Maryland. During this field test, a selected group of Child Welfare workers, supervisors and fiscal staff continue their normal work in CHESSIE, but also perform that same work in CJAMS to ensure the results are consistent. Parallel testing takes extra work by the Washington team, but it is excellent practice for the testers and it will provide valuable feedback to the technical team as they prepare CJAMS for production. A big THANK YOU to Washington County whose efforts will benefit the rest of Maryland when CJAMS is operational statewide later this year!
New systems, such as CJAMS, may look sleek, live in “the cloud” and have the latest “bells and whistles,” but the thing that really matters is how well it supports the work of those who will use it to do their job. To help ensure CJAMS can support Child Welfare, six staff members from Washington LDSS spent a week in the MD THINK test lab working through 35 actual scenarios. The scenarios covered a broad range of work, such as “Intake – Child Protective Services – Neglect – Screen In;” “Case Management – Out of Home – Program Assignment and Ending the Placement;” and “Foster Care – Voluntary Placement.” The valuable feedback and improvements that came out of scenario testing is helping to fine-tune CJAMS and ensure it meets the needs of Child Welfare workers throughout the State of Maryland.
One goal of CJAMS training is to be “just in time” so that you do not lose the skills and knowledge you acquire. However, to accommodate the large number of people needing CJAMS training in each phase, classes will begin approximately four weeks before your county goes live. This means many people may have a gap between training and go-live. To help you maintain your skills during this gap, trainees will be provided access to a practice version of CJAMS called the ‘sandbox.’ The sandbox is an up-to-date replica of CJAMS built in a safe environment. You will have unlimited access to revisit what you learned in training, run practice cases, or just play around and familiarize yourself with all that CJAMS has to offer. See you at the playground!
What do baseball and CJAMS training have in common? They both cover all the bases. From the very beginning, CJAMS has been a collaborative effort between the developers and the local offices. We want you to be able to hit the ground running with CJAMS after you receive training, so we are making sure we cover all the bases. It’s not uncommon for training to elicit policy and procedural questions. To ensure that you have prompt answers to these questions, a technology expert will be available at the training sessions, and policy and procedural specialists will be available during a daily call to answer questions and clarify any inconsistencies. This is part of our commitment to ensure that you are prepared to engage with CJAMS from day one.
CJAMS is a major leap forward from DHS’ current case management technology with a cleaner look, easier navigation and enhanced capabilities; so using CJAMS will be very different than using MD CHESSIE. To ensure Child Welfare (CW) and Adult Services (AS) workers are ready and able to use CJAMS on day one, MD THINK and DHS will train all CJAMS users through a blended learning approach. Various training methods will be used, such as in-person Instructor-led Training (ILT), e-Learning modules and short instructional videos. Support materials will also be provided as part of training, such as tip sheets, user guides and how-to videos, all of which will be accessible on the DHS intranet. CJAMS Training is committed to providing CW and AS workers with the knowledge and skills they need to be successful on the first day of go-live.
An important part of developing a system like CJAMS is ensuring the workers who will use the system are involved in the testing process. This process is known as User Acceptance Testing (UAT.) During UAT, a small group of DHS users will test CJAMS’ functions, features, and ease of use. They will take real-world work scenarios and test CJAMS end-to-end to ensure they will be able to do their jobs in the new system. UAT takes place after the system is developed and before training is delivered. Input from CJAMS end users is helping to build an innovative case management system that allows users to easily input, collect, share, and approve critical information that helps serve Maryland families.
To design and develop an effective technology training program, it is critical that the workers who will use the technology are involved in the training creation process. Since, November 2018, DHS local and central staff have been part of the CJAMS Training Workgroup. The individuals were identified by their local Directors to work with the CJAMS Training Team to ensure the training will meet the needs of the Child Welfare, Adult Services, Juvenile Services, Finance and Title IV-E workers. Some of the local staff will be trained to help deliver CJAMS training as part of the CJAMS Train the Trainer (TTT) program. Starting with CJAMS Pilot Train the Trainer courses in Spring 2019, participants will learn how to teach, share, and assist users during the CJAMS rollout. As CJAMS becomes part of the everyday routine, they will provide support to their colleagues in their local offices. Train the Trainer begins the journey to learning and using CJAMS.
CJAMS is jammin’! How? CJAMS developers on the MD THINK team are collaborating with “User Story Groups” within DHS’ Social Services Administration. What are they and what do they do? Who? They are DHS staff that will use the CJAMS application. What? They write real-world case-related scenarios into “User Stories” that help developers understand the flow of their case management work. Why? To inform the CJAMS application developers of what the new system needs to do so the case managers can do their jobs effectively. When? The groups started in April 2018 and will continue to shape development until CJAMS is fully rolled out. What does this mean? The collaboration between the MD THINK development team and DHS case managers helps ensure that CJAMS will have the necessary functionalities to support the work of DHS Child Welfare, Adult Services, Finance, Title IV-E and OLM. The CJAMS development process is poised to become a national model for development of case management systems.
CJAMS will deliver many improvements to Maryland’s Child Welfare, Adult Services, and Juvenile Services programs. One of the key benefits of the new system will be the ability for staff to access case information from any location and work using multiple mobile devices including phone, tablet, or laptop. Staff will be able to connect with and support customers quickly and efficiently, even in a customer’s home. The mobility CJAMS provides will make it easier, faster and more efficient to collect case information, create case assessments, and generate reports. For more information on other features and benefits of CJAMS, reference the CJAMS Overview.
CJAMS will be the first major application to be fully developed on the MD THINK platform, followed by Eligibility & Enrollment (E&E) and Child Support Administration (CSA) over the next two years. Each new MD THINK application supports a different DHS administration and replaces the older applications currently in use. CJAMS supports DHS Social Services Administration and replaces CHESSIE. E&E supports DHS Family Investment Administration (FIA) and replaces CARES. CSA supports DHS Child Support Administration (CSA) and replaces CSES. E&E was the first application to go live in 2018 with one module, Long-Term Care (LTC). CJAMS will be fully implemented by the end of 2019 and the goal is for E&E and CSA to be completed by the end of 2020.
You may have heard that MD THINK is “in the cloud,” but what does that mean for you and your day-to-day work? The cloud is a computing system that allows shared data storage, system mobility, and increases the availability of services by sharing IT resources. This cloud-based platform enables CJAMS and the other applications on the MD THINK platform to “talk” to each other better, and they can be accessed from anywhere with a secure internet connection. MD THINK is one of the first cloud-based solutions for human services in the nation and will give workers in the field access to information and features that will improve their service to Marylanders. Stay tuned for next week’s “CJAMS Jam of the Week!”
CJAMS is one of several applications being built on the MD THINK “shared technology platform.” The platform concept is straightforward: technical applications uniquely support their programs while sharing the things they have in common, such as data and security. Applications built to service SSA, FIA and CSA programs can work from the same shared information for Marylanders who use multiple state programs, reducing duplication and confusion. MD THINK also invests in a robust security system that protects all applications instead of each one having to build their own security. The MD THINK platform maximizes effectiveness and efficiency. Stay tuned for next week’s “CJAMS Jam of the Week!”
CJAMS is coming to DHS in 2019! CJAMS is a system that will support DHS Child Welfare, Adult Services, the Office of Licensing and Monitoring and DJS Juvenile Services. All supported services will be combined into a single application. CJAMS is one of the applications being developed as part of the MD THINK platform. Look for “CJAMS Jam of the Week” communications to provide details on MD THINK and CJAMS, including implementation schedules, key features, training information and much more!