Register Today For EnerGov’s 2012 User Conference

EUCTake advantage of early registration for EnerGov’s 2012 User Conference and save 25% before March 31, 2012.  Last year end users, administrators, managers and other key decision makers from more than 20 states and Canada learned about the newest features and latest products, including the iG Workforce mobile platform for the iPad.

This year EnerGov will continue to provide hands-on training sessions and innovation showcases that will help attendees leverage the EnerGov system to improve business processes and reach operational goals. Attendees will also have time to network and learn how other agencies are using the EnerGov system to work more efficiently and improve public services.

Consider participating in conference sessions and sharing your success and ROI stories with EnerGov.  Participating agencies will receive complementary passes to this year’s conference.   For more details, go to http://www.energov.com/user-conference.html.

Enterprise Automation Enables Effective Citizen Engagement

Long waits, confusion, and red tape are images that come to mind when dealing with many government agencies but with new technologies and enhanced automation, these stereotypes will soon disappear. By advocating and adopting web and mobile technology, government agencies are improving public service through increased access and transparency.

Unbeknownst to the average citizen,  the regulatory process of issuing permits and licenses can be extremely complex and layered.  Historically, most government agencies have required paperwork to be filled out on premise or delivered via mail through a courier. Subsequently, the completed application would pass through dozens (if not hundreds) of checks in order to meet required regulatory standards and conditions. This process often involves a multitude of departments and individuals each of whom are operating on disparate databases, and/or have separate “forms” for each department, with no central process workflow. Because of this, agencies end up wasting significant amounts of time and introduce significant errors – not to mention it may be weeks before the applicant hears back from the agency.

Citizen Engagement

This scenario was typical to the licensing and permitting process in Charleston County, South Carolina. To help manage the process more efficiently and improve citizen engagement, the county implemented the EnerGov 9 enterprise government software platform (Land Management and Licensing & Regulatory Suites) thereby enabling constituents to perform a variety of tasks from the convenience of their home or on the go — all managed within one centralized enterprise database that help the agency run smarter and more efficient.

Through an easy-to-use citizen access website, customers and contractors can pay for, apply for, and monitor the status of permits in addition to paying for and renewing licenses (over 13 billion dollars of gross reported revenues) . Other services include scheduling, searching and cancelling inspections and submitting citizen requests.

Within the first 10 months of deployment, the county issued over 44,000 permits and processed over 8,000 plan reviews, saving time and money for applicants working with the agency. By centralizing data, improving cross-departmental collaboration, and enforcing regulatory workflow, the county is able to process applications more quickly and accurately. Furthermore, within the first six months of deployment, the county collected over $150,000 in revenue that had slipped through the cracks under the previous software system.

Charleston County is a prime example of how, through investments in automation, government agencies can better connect with citizens and increase efficiencies within the permitting and licensing process.

Automating and Improving Data and Process Quality Control with GIS and EnerGov 9

One of the many ways a government agency can increase efficiencies in their permitting, licensing and asset management process is to leverage their geographic information system (GIS).  The EnerGov 9 Enterprise Server  platform was specifically built to be seamlessly integrated with GIS,  allowing government agencies to accurately manage and analyze data from a spatial standpoint— enabling well-informed decisions about land use or assets.

One simple but effective feature in EnerGov 9 that allows the leveraging of geographical data is the ability to initiate events, such as a case, permit or license application process, directly from GIS.  Code enforcement officials can accurately locate an address, parcel or even a vacant lot and initiate an inspection case or permitting process right from the map, allowing for case histories to be queried spatially in the future.   Parcel attribute information, such as the size of the parcel, can be automated and streamlined within the regulatory process.  Furthermore, EnerGov’s  “Georules Engine” can be configured a variety of ways in order to automate notification processes related to any conditions or alerts related to the property.

GIS polygon toolIn addition to addresses and parcels, GIS tools allow any type of irregular area to be tracked and managed.  With refined editing capabilities, points, lines and polygon features can be drawn and tracked for a parade route permit or an irregular-shaped area of an engineering encroachment permit.  Agencies can also improve managing their public assets by tracking any object with spatial relevance, such as hydrants, water drains, or trees.

EnerGov’s integration of a government agency’s GIS allows for powerful automation of business functions, ensures the uniformity and verification of the case location, improves accessibility of information between different departments and helps to visualize and analyze regulatory cases and records. As GIS continues to rapidly advance with other technologies including 3D and building information modeling, it will become an indispensable and foundational technology utilized within the regulatory and asset management processes.

Leveraging GIS to Improve an Agency’s Infrastructure Asset Management Process

GIS Asset MgtWithout a good management or budgeting process, a healthy infrastructure will often be left to the wayside to deteoriorate more rapidly according to Alex Marshall in Governing. The number of public assets a government agency manages is enormous. Bridges, sidewalks, sewers, fire hydrants and traffic lights all have to be monitored and maintained for wear and tear and repair. Even the paint on every stop sign needs to be accounted for should it become too dull for visibility. By keeping an accurate inventory of assets and up-to-date information on their conditions, government agencies can better evaluate, plan and budget for operating and maintenance costs.

GIS helps improve asset management by providing spatial information related to each asset. Within the infrastructure asset management world, managing this geographic data is important in order to efficiently schedule and dispatch work for routine maintenance work, repairs, collect information or do a major overhaul of upgrading assets as Philadelphia did when the city replaced 87,000 incandescent traffic lights with LED bulbs, with projected savings of $1 million per year.

GIS also helps to centralize, analyze and visualize geographic data to use resources more efficiently and understand the impact assets may have on each other. For instance, geospatial awareness can help an agency’s project when growing trees obscure traffic signs or power lines, and potential flooding zones can be calculated if a particular pipe was to burst. With an enterprise GIS, different departments can also access the same geographical data and strategically coordinate together or ensure that differing projects do not interfere with each other.

Even with dwindling resources and budget cuts, government agencies cannot afford to mismanage their public assets and infrastucture which will be more costly in the long run. An enterprise system tightly integrated with GIS can prove to be a cost-effective solution that helps government agencies to efficiently and effectively manage their assets.

To learn more about EnerGov’s Asset Management suite, click here: http://www.energov.com/asset-management.html