FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
An ongoing repository of answers to questions agencies are asking
Are Portable Document Format (PDF) files saved from Aware accessible?
Yes, output formats supported by Aware – PDF and Rich Text Format (RTF) – are accessible with JAWS® and Window-Eyes™.
Is the Aware software accessible? What assistive technologies does it support?
Yes, Aware is accessible. Alliance rigorously tests each Aware release with common Accessibility Tools (AT), ensuring that your staff can use Aware with the tools they depend on to do their work. Alliance works closely with the industry’s foremost screen-reading technology. Aware supports JAWS®, Window-Eyes™, ZoomText® and Dragon® Naturally Speaking.
Can agencies assign custom names to caseloads or are they computer-generated?
Yes, in Aware agencies can assign their own Caseload IDs.
What personal information fields are available for each case? Are they customizable?
The Personal Information page in Aware includes a number of fields that counselors can use to record personal information for each case. Some fields are required for Rehabilitation Services Administration (RSA) reporting, but agencies can add or remove other fields from this page based on their unique preferences. The default fields on the Personal Information page include Contact Information, Gender, Birth Date, Primary Language, Driver’s License Number and Emergency Contacts.
How do you track voter registration? Are counselors prompted to update registration when a participant has an address change?
Voter registration fields are included on each participant’s Application page within Aware. Currently, Aware does not prompt counselors to update voter registration when a participant address changes, but agencies are welcome to contract with Alliance to develop custom functionality for their Aware system. The voter registration and address fields on the Application and Personal Information pages may be updated at any time prior to case closure.
Can users create a new case without providing a SSN?
Yes, new cases can be created without a Social Security number (SSN). For Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) cases, system administrators can enable a feature in Aware that auto-generates nine-digit identification numbers for new cases without an SSN. These identification numbers are unique within the Aware database and begin with “99” so they are not mistaken for SSNs in reports. For Independent Living (IL) and custom case types, system administrators can choose to forego the collection of Social Security numbers.
Does the software offer features for SSA reimbursement?
Yes, agencies that submit claims to the Social Security Administration (SSA) for reimbursement may add the Aware Social Security Reimbursement (SSR) tool to their Aware system for an additional cost. The Aware SSR tool provides a Reimbursement module to generate and track SSR claims and collect Social Security and wage data for each participant.
Can users edit fields on a page after the page has been saved?
Yes, most saved pages in Aware can be re-opened and edited, but there are a few exceptions. By default, Plans cannot be modified after signature, Authorizations cannot be modified after issue and Cases cannot be modified after closure. These default settings may be adapted to meet the unique needs of each agency. Agencies can use system and personal security parameters to define what information can be modified after it has been saved.
Case Notes, Letter and Attachments
Can attachments be viewed on a single page?
Yes, attachments in Aware can be viewed on a single page if they are saved at the case level. Attachments saved at the case level are viewed together in the Attachments layout on the Case Management page. Users view attachments specific to objects, such as invoices attached to authorizations, from the main page for that object.
Can letters be sent from the application to recipients via email?
Yes, users can send letters from Aware to recipients via email. For letters sent to participants, Aware will automatically select the email address on file for that case
Do the letters include a letterhead? If so, what information does the letterhead include?
Yes, letters in Aware can include a letterhead. Agencies design Aware letter templates using Microsoft Word®. Letters (or forms) can include three different types of content: boilerplate text and logos, dynamically populated data pulled from the case, and open data fields for users to type narrative information. Agencies may design letterheads to include specific content relevant to the agency.
Can users view all case notes on a single page, or does each case have to be opened individually?
Yes, Aware users can view case notes on a single page. In a participant case, Aware users can select the ‘Case Note’ layout to view all case notes associated with a case and summaries for each note. To read all notes from a single page, users can use the ‘Print All’ function to print the case notes or save as a PDF.
Employment and Job Search
Does the software integrate with any third-party applications or websites for job search, such as Monster.com or state workforce databases?
Yes, Aware can integrate with third-party job search applications via a custom data exchange using the Aware Interface Manager.
Can users indicate an end-date for each job opening?
Yes, Aware users can provide both an Open Date and a Closed Date for the job opportunity as well as an Application Deadline. Candidates can submit applications for the job opening prior to the Application Deadline and Closed Date.
What data do you capture for job openings?
Data collected in Aware on Job Opening pages includes Employer Contact Information, Employment Type, Salary, Job Requirements and Work Environment.
How are job openings imported into the application?
Agencies manually enter job openings into Aware. As an upgrade, some agencies contract with Alliance to interface Aware to outside data sources and import job openings from various sources such as Monster.com, LinkedIn, the National Labor Exchange (NLx), and CSAVR’s Talent Acquisition Portal. Any and all agencies are welcome to contract with Alliance to develop customizations in Aware that will allow their users to import job openings from other systems.
Can users print an entire case record, or does each page have to be opened & printed individually?
Yes, entire Aware case records can be printed without opening each page individually. Users can print case information in two ways: individual records can be printed directly from the Aware Case Management grid, or a group of records can be printed by selecting “Print All” from the Actions Menu on the Case Management page. “Print All” causes the system to print whatever type of record the user is viewing in Aware Case Management. For example, the user could print all case notes by selecting “Print All” while viewing a case note layout, or an entire case record by selecting “Print All” while viewing the Full History layout.
How do you handle RSA reporting?
Aware produces appropriate sections of the Vocational Rehabilitation federal reports required by RSA. To maintain compliance to federal reporting requirements, Alliance provides the RSA911editchecker tool at no cost to each agency with an Upgrade, Maintenance and Support agreement. Alliance incorporates federally required data elements throughout Aware so relevant fields in the federal reports can be automatically generated. Currently, Aware provides relevant sections for the Vocational Rehabilitation (VR) RSA-911, RSA-113, RSA-2 and Standards and Indicators reports, the subparts II and III of the Independent Living (IL) RSA-704 report, and parts II, IV and VI of the Older Blind (OB) RSA-70B report. For more information on the RSA tool, please visit RSA911editchecker.com.
What reporting capabilities does the software include?
Aware is capable of generating more than 140 standard reports, which include case reports, caseload reports, statewide reports, federal reports and historical reports. The sophisticated reporting capabilities in Aware enable real-time reports that are integrated with the case management application. Agencies can also contract with Alliance to develop custom reports based on their needs.
Do changes to your software at one agency affect the users from another agency?
No, each agency may adapt Aware based on their business practices and policies. These adaptations do not affect any other agency. If an agency contracts with Alliance for a customization, Alliance may implement this change to Aware in the Groupware release. Along with federal changes and other improvements, customizations programmed in Groupware releases are published to all agencies for their adaptation and optional use.
Does each agency have their own instance of your software?
Yes, each agency is given their own instance of Aware, storing data entirely separate from all other Aware systems.
How is your software hosted?
Aware can be hosted either by the agency (on-premises) or in the cloud by Alliance in a managed service environment.
Do you have timed login sessions?
Yes, Aware has timed login sessions. The duration of each login session is defined by each agency.
What security features are in place?
Aware is a secure application with a number of settings and options agencies can use to enhance security for their system. Security features in Aware include advanced login and authentication, role-based authorization, data encryption and multi-tiered application architecture.
System Administration & Architecture
Can system administrators create custom user roles?
Yes, system administrators can create custom user roles, each with their own security parameters. Aware calls these user roles “Security Templates.” System administrators can create user roles that define each user’s access to cases, caseloads and data with security options ranging from read-only to full update access. Aware also includes security templates, which allow system administrators to assign common personal security parameters to groups of staff members.
Can agencies make changes or customizations to the application?
Yes, agencies can adapt Aware to fit their unique business needs in two ways. One, system administrators can use the adaptation features included in Aware to display or hide fields, make fields required or optional, change user permissions, and build templates for user roles, letters and plans. And two, agencies can contract with Alliance to develop Aware customizations to directly fit their needs.
How often are new versions or upgrades released? How often are updates released?
Alliance typically releases Aware upgrades twice annually. Aware upgrades contain new features, legal and regulatory changes, accessibility improvements, error corrections and performance improvements. Alliance also releases updates as needed for error correction.
What modules are included in the software? Is there a service module? Contracts module?
There are a number of modules in Aware for Case Management, Financial Management and System Administration tasks. Agency system administrators can decide which modules are displayed in the Main Menu based on the agency’s unique case management needs. Aware commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) includes several different options for managing contracts. Aware also includes a Service Module option, which provides case management for residential and non-residential rehabilitation centers.
What is included on the homepage?
The Aware homepage provides a Main Menu of available modules, organized in columns by Case, Financial and Administrative tasks. The Aware homepage also includes buttons for accessing Aware Help and system preferences. Some agencies have Alliance customize this page to include links to policy manuals and other reference sites.