Accela Announces Accela Automation 7.2, First Civic Engagement Platform Integrating Mobile App Development, Social Media, and the Cloud
Innovation leader’s groundbreaking release focuses on m-government, citizen service for agencies of all sizes
SAN RAMON, Calif., April 4, 2012– Accela, Inc. today launched Accela Automation® 7.2, the latest version of its market-leading software platform for government automation and civic engagement. The new release incorporates mobile application development tools, new social media features, and an expanded selection of deployment and licensing options—all designed to make the procurement, implementation, and daily use of online automated government services easier, faster and more accessible to agencies of all sizes and budgets.
The latest advancements in Accela Automation 7.2 include: a suite of Best Practices Templates to streamline implementations; the addition of the Accela Mobile™ Software Development Kit (SDK) to enable easy development of m-government apps; functionality to spur government-citizen interaction; and a range of user-experience enhancements that benefit government administrators, office and mobile workers, and citizens.
“Internet-based commerce long ago stopped being a nice-to-have option for government agencies, since the public and businesses now expect to interact with government anytime and anywhere, just as they do with other service providers in their lives,” noted Maury Blackman President and CEO of Accela. “At the same time, public-sector agencies are increasingly looking for easy-to-implement, cost-effective automation solutions. Accela continues to lead the way with a platform that provides the features and tools they need—whether deploying on premise or in the Accela Cloud.”
Best Practices Templates Boost Productivity
New Best Practice Templates make it easier and faster than ever for governments to deploy Accela Automation as their enterprise solution. Included in Accela Automation at no additional charge, the Templates provide complete turnkey configurations, which agencies can immediately use for rapid deployment—gleaned from Accela’s more than 30 years of experience serving over 500 agencies of all kinds. Accela Automation 7.2 incorporates nearly 100 templates for Permitting, Planning, Code Enforcement, Licensing and Case Management, Service Request, and Asset Management.
SDK to Fuel Rapid Expansion of Accela Automation for m-Government and Citizen Engagement
An additional component of the Accela Automation ecosystem, the new Accela Mobile SDK extends the functionality of Accela Automation to foster development of m-government and civic-engagement apps by third-party developers and agencies themselves. Accela’s current iOS apps, Accela Mobile Inspector™ and Accela Analytics™, were developed using the SDK. The Accela Mobile SDK is free to download, after registration with the Accela Developer Program.
Features Meet Changing Needs of Governments and Citizens
Further innovations in Accela Automation 7.2 have been designed to advance the burgeoning revolution in government/citizen interaction happening today, through social media, mobile devices, and the web.
Social Media: Integration with Twitter enables agencies to automatically tweet when new records—for anything from a new building permit to an agency update—are created within Accela Automation. Agencies with a Facebook page can also forward the Tweet to their followers and spread the word.
QR Codes: Accela Automation 7.2 supports the scanning of QR (quick response) codes to access permits and related documents online. The QR system has become a popular way to access web-based details, due to its standardization and embedded information capacity, compared to standard UPC barcodes. For example, if a permit is posted on a jobsite, a registered user can scan the QR code and will be directed to a secure Accela Citizen Accesswebsite to schedule or update an inspection.
Custom Web Portals: New features in Accela Citizen Access empower agencies to easily configure and design web page flows that are easy-to-use and come with agency-defined, context-specific options. This makes it even easier for the public to engage and connect with their local government, anytime from anywhere.
Other advancements in Accela Automation 7.2 include a graphical workflow designer for the creation of visual workflow processes, built-in capabilities for online scheduling and management examinations for licenses and certifications, and much more. A more complete list of Accela Automation 7.2 features may be found at: www.accela.com/accela-automation/whats-new.
Licensing options provide flexibility for today’s economy
With the goal of delivering Accela Automation’s robust capabilities to agencies of all sizes and budgets, Accela offers a subscription model, licensing the software for a low per-user fee. The new subscription model provides a turnkey solution, including:
the Best Practices Templates;
access to the complete Accela Automation Land Management, Licensing, and Asset Management applications;
an optional mobile license with access to the complete library of Accela’s growing roster of task-centric and role-specific mobile apps; and
an optional population-based license for use of Accela Citizen Access™, which provides the public with an online mechanism for applying, paying and tracking their applications from their home, office or mobile device.
Deployment options to support agency priorities
Accela has for over 10 years delivered Accela Automation as a Cloud-based, managed service. With many agencies today striving to do more with less, moving to a Cloud-based deployment model significantly reduces infrastructure, equipment, software and staff resourcing requirements. For agencies that prefer to own and maintain their infrastructure, equipment and applications, the same Accela Automation software can be deployed on premise at the agency’s data center, assuring control of the assets and information. Additional details on procurement options may be obtained at: http://myaccela.com/Contact-us.