Operations Maintenance + Enhancements for Maryland Accountability + Reporting System (MARS).

The Maryland State Department of Education (MSDE) and Division for School Effectiveness Office of School and Community Nutrition Programs (OSCNP) has tasked ZDAAS to provide operations and maintenance (O&M) and enhancements for the Maryland Accountability and Reporting System (MARS) system. MARS is critical to the efficient processing of the customer: 1) applications and supporting materials, 2) claims and payment processing; as well as 3) providing oversight of customer activities, and 4) publishing State and Federal Reporting. The State of Maryland, federal legislation, and the General Assembly continue to place additional demands on MSDE to increase effective participation in the Nutrition Food Programs and fulfilling the mission of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA). This project entailed the following tasks and responsibilities from ZDAAS:

  • Resolve logged production issues via approved Work Orders (WO) to implement mandated updates, maintain and improve security, and resolve performance matters for the current MARS Application as more fully described in this CATS+ TORFP.
  • Familiarization of ZDAAS team of the MARS environment (Microsoft .NET platform and a proprietary Commercial Off The Shelf (COTS) source library) and interfaces (to include a number of State organizations including: Financial Management Information System (FMIS), Child Care Administrative Tracking System (CCATS), MSDE Financial Data Warehouse, Food Programs Reporting System (FPRS), Web Based Supply Chain Management (WEBSCM), and Verification Data Reporting System (VDRS), federal Internal Revenue Service ( IRS) among others).
  • Support and modify source code and software configurations, enhancing the intranet and extranet web-based solutions hosted by MSDE, and solving logged support issues to maintain successful operation of the MARS application.
  • Design, update and administer the SQL Server Database in Test and UAT environments, design and propose configuration strategies for SharePoint Service to improve searching, configure and troubleshoot performance issues and Microsoft Exchange Services and MARs design considerations for exploiting the latest API function for managing calendars, and email templates, and mailing lists. Manage data views and interfaces with existing Oracle and MS-SQL.
  • ZDAAS Documentation Specialist subject matter expert (SME) to create design documents, user documents, online help documents through the input of support developers, end users and managers. Develop and manage the help content, formal training materials, content pages, testing plans, training materials, technical design documents and training scripts as needed.
  • Review of WO requirements by ZDAAS Testing Specialist to prepare and review test plans and test cases; and report defects and prepare test reports. Designing and executing IT software tests and evaluate results to ensure compliance with applicable regulations. Preparation of test scripts, test plans, design and prepare all needed test data, provide reports, and maintain record of test progress.
  • Architect, design and development of SharePoint implementations by ZDAAS Web Developer using best practices. Design and develop and improve active dashboards to provide summary information. Perform Microsoft .NET development to extend and augment the SharePoint platform, implementing and customizing SharePoint-based solutions.

Project Key Information

The EntityThe agency/departmentAwarded
State of MarylandMaryland State Department of Education (MSDE)October 1, 2014 | Minority Business Enterprise (MBE) Subcontractor