The City’s Building and Housing Departments needed help in managing its inspections and permitting processes and coordinating its data with other City Departments. There was little visibility between department records regarding parcel and property management, requiring clerks to search for information from multiple systems and files. Inspection scheduling was complicated, requiring manual steps to access shared calendars and little to no visibility of scheduling data in the field. Inspections were laborious and time-consuming, requiring inspectors to collect their information in the field and then process that data back at the office. All of this led to a growing backlog of permit applications, inspections and collections, resulting in lost revenue, customer and end-user frustration, and even increased risk to public safety, with missed or delayed code violations.
The City needed a cohesive, real-time digital property management solution that not only supported the building and housing department’s needs but also allowed for greater communication with the Mayor’s office, Planning and Zoning, Law, Fire and Public Works Departments. The City tried other software packages, but to gain the required capabilities, the City would have had to use modules from more than one software company, decreasing visibility and efficiency. They found other software solutions could not be customized around the City’s processes and information couldn’t be shared instantaneously. Lastly, the license fees of other software packages were cost prohibitive.
CitiSphere proposed a custom software solution that would handle all their existing workflows as well as improve on their legacy software, with additional features and functionality to help improve efficiencies. The CitiSphere Software Development team worked diligently with the City to understand its unique processes, work flows and challenges. The CitiSphere team worked hand in hand with city employees, shadowing office workers and accompanying City staff on site visits to gain a deep functional understanding of the inspection and permitting processes.