Avolve-Plan-Review

Building better staff retention for plan review

Would you expect staff at the supermarket to physically write a receipt of all your food? Or at work, require employees to handwrite all letters of correspondence?

Gone are those days. The digital world has changed the way we view our everyday interactions. Across both personal and working lives, the use of technology has enhanced efficiency, enabling us to focus our time on more enriched tasks. Yet, when it comes to plan review, we still see paper processes or fragmented digital tools that do not meet the needs of plan reviewers. It’s no wonder that those involved in plan review often seek alternative career paths. However, agencies can evolve and retain those employees.

Removing churn

Technology is central to keeping staff happy and productive; it helps mitigate overly complex procedures, reduces frustration in admin-heavy repetitive tasks, and drives efficiency. However, electronic plan review solutions are more than just a tool for those involved in plan review; they also provide an investment in them as people. Digital tools enhance careers and empower staff to spend time on value-add tasks that keep them interested and engaged.

Many government agencies have been slow to adopt technology, leading to unnecessarily high staff turnover. Put into context, many jurisdictions have seen their departments shrink at the same time they are facing an influx in permit applications, so workloads are increasing. They are already doing more work with less people and now they struggle to fill their open roles, leaving those still working to pick up the pieces.

This creates the perfect storm, leading to further disruption and employee discontent.

Investing in revenue generation

Permitting is central to the economic growth so desperately needed by jurisdictions, and digital plan review, in conjunction with a permitting system such as Accela, plays a critical role.

By moving to electronic plan review, agencies can remove unnecessary administration and ensure staff are motivated by introducing modern, collaborative technology. Plan review can be conducted more efficiently, so both staff and citizens see the benefits.

In addition, the staff shortages can be alleviated by widening the employment pool. Electronic plan review enables remote working, so resources can be located in a different state, for example, and jurisdictions can bring in temporary staff to support spikes in demand.

Don’t handicap a critical revenue generating function by not investing in the essential tools required for employees to do their jobs. The resource deficit must be solved so that both agencies and staff can flourish by utilizing a highly functional and aligned electronic plan review solution – it’s common sense.

Avolve will be a gold sponsor and exhibitor at Accela’s govtech industry conference, Accelarate 2022, in Salt Lake City October 3-5.

About The Author

christine

Christine Brakefield, Senior Solutions Consultant at Avolve Software, is an ICC Certified Building Official, former Planner and Chief Building Official at Midwest City. Christine's seven year municipal government experience provides unique insight to how jurisdictions can leverage technology to enhance the best customer experience and increase efficiencies within critical development processes.

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