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City of Moreno Valley transformed their business overnight citywide with the ePermitHub Digital Plan Room

It was March 2020, and Moreno Valley faced the daunting challenge: how do you move at the “Speed of Business” during a once-in-a-lifetime pandemic and implementa long-term, innovative digital plan solution? City Hall was closed to the public, and employees were understandably preoccupied with their families’ health and well-being. Protocols kept changing, and uncertainty became the norm.

While it seemed like the world was shutting down, the City refused to stop doing business and refused to stop innovating. That March, the Building & Safety Division experienced a 15 percent increase in plan check activity and a 20 percent increase in Certificates of Occupancy. The Planning Division also reported a 58 percent increase in applications, and the numbers continued to climb.

The pandemic exposed an existing issue: the process of paper plan submittal and review was archaic and tedious. Each review process cycle was expensive and time consuming, costing weeks in time and thousands of dollars for all parties involved and the mountains of paper plans that had to be printed, stamped, folded, transported, and warehoused at City Hall generated a costly eyesore. Moreno Valley needed a better solution to allow employees to work more quickly, safely, efficiently, and remotely, if necessary.

The City prides itself on providing exceptional customer care by questioning the status quo and challenging the notion of “But that’s how we have always done it.” Moreno Valley approaches process improvement methodically and thoroughly, squarely focused on nimble solutions, and thus able to quickly evolve and adapt.

It was clear Moreno Valley would benefit from a full-featured virtual service counter with electronic validation of submitted plans, automated notifications, a simplified feedback method, and real-time project status availability to allow projects to process more quickly. Along with the benefits to the customers and staff, City management needed improved reporting capabilities to evaluate and measure efficiencies, review times, and project timelines more accurately.

The goals were ambitious even without a pandemic. To create a pandemic-proof solution and provide all its customers with the benefit of round-the-clock access, the City had to quickly develop a solution that would be easily accepted and welcomed by all its customers.

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