About Us (or me, actually)

Dorene's picture.My Background

You've already figured out that my name is Dorene Matney. I've been an independent web consultant since 2005. I have an MBA and over 30 years of experience in business. I worked as a computer programmer, application analyst, project manager, system manager, systems engineer, technical consulting engineer, quality engineer, software designer, software developer, program manager, IT process consultant, and website developer among many other roles in my professional career.

My Interests

My interests are in the following areas:

My idea is to get you going and then be a resource if you need additional assistance. Otherwise, I get out of the way. If I design your website, we'll discuss the underlying technology with an eye on how you plan to maintain it in the future. For example, some of my clients want to learn Expression Web because they have some history with the old Microsoft FrontPage product and they are technically-minded. While that may not be your particular situation, I want you to understand what it will take to maintain your website over time based on your design choices.

My Methods

Though most of my clients already have websites when they contact me, some are just starting out. For the latter group, I can coach them through some of the options out there, help them design a custom site or choose a template, and begin to put their information on the Web.

A request I've gotten from several clients is to convert a FrontPage website to Expression Web. I find the easiest and most cost-effective method tends to be for me to redesign an older website with a newer, mobile-friendly look, using current web standards. Once the design is completed, I build out a page or two from the FrontPage website. Then, depending on the client (that's you), I can complete the migration or I can teach you to do it. Unfortunately, there is no ready-made conversion tool or technique. It takes some effort to crank through the text and pictures on a website, but the effort is worth it.

Of course, no two situations are alike. I like the variety of each client's business and situation. I've worked on simple websites — just text and pictures — as well as complex websites with e-commerce applications, intricate design needs, and bells and whistles. Another aspect of the variety I see is in the size of websites: some are small (say, less than 10 pages) while others are quite large (1000 pages or more!).

I'll list my technical skills in a minute, but you'll probably want to know that my strengths are in how I work with clients even more than in what I do. One of the most frequent complaints I hear when I get a new client is that the previous web consultant was unresponsive. I do my best to counter that reputation by being attentive. I communicate primarily through email, and respond within 1 business day to most inquiries. I complete most new designs and redesigns within a couple of weeks. Go ahead … contact me to see how I can work with you.

My Fees

You may be curious about my hourly rate. (Confidentially, it's $50/hour.) After you and I discuss what you want done, I can try to give you a ballpark estimate for the total task, but I'll still track the time I spend and bill you accordingly. That's because each job is different, each client has different needs, and until I actually do the work, I don't know what I'm going to run into. I stand behind my work; I'll fix problems at no extra charge. Additionally, I'll answer questions and provide information either via phone or email, also at no extra charge.

My Skills

My technical skills for web consulting encompass several technologies, tools, and programming languages. For example, I've worked on websites with the following: HTML, XHTML, CSS, PHP, MySQL, Javascript, etc. The tools I use vary depending on the task. When I design/develop a custom website for you, I'll choose a toolset based on your technical interest and skills. For example, if you have experience with FrontPage, I'll probably choose Expression Web, and add some PHP for easier maintenance. If you just want some help managing your existing website, I'll take a little time to study your site, then provide you coaching.

I am not a graphic designer, but I can design a clean and straightforward web presence for you that is attractive, useful, search engine friendly, and mobile device aware.

Locations I Serve

My clients are located in various parts of the United States, with the majority found in Placer County and Nevada County, California, from Roseville to Grass Valley and the surrounding areas of greater Sacramento. Some of my clients are in the northeast or east coast — New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Maryland, Virginia, Florida, Georgia, and North Carolina. I have a few clients scattered around the western states beyond California — Oregon, Colorado, Texas, and Nevada. In the midwest, I have clients in Kansas, Illinois, Indiana and Missouri. I am located in Auburn, CA (near Sacramento), and work well remotely via phone and email.