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ArticleProductse-PlanREVIEW's Seamless Integration to AMANDA Permitting - e-PlanSoft

August 27, 2020by Brandy Parslow

e-PlanSoft’s e-PlanREVIEW® seamlessly integrates with Calytera’s AMANDA permitting system to help governments digitize and create business continuity for critical functions that increase citizen engagement and drive economic growth. AMANDA is used by agencies that want to optimize their permitting and compliance services through automation, mobile apps, an online citizen portal, advanced reporting, and analytics. e-PlanREVIEW®, the leading electronic plan review platform, is fully accessible by the web and is available to integrate with AMANDA. This streamlined connectivity between AMANDA and EPR provides agencies and their constituents with a best of breed solution to improve staff efficiency and plan review turnaround time.

In 2019, e-PlanSoft™ provided a plan review solution to the City of Arlington, Texas that was carefully implemented to satisfy the City’s goals of an integrated hosted solution that connected e-PlanREVIEW® (EPR) with both the ArlingtonPermits.com website and the AMANDA permitting system. e-PlanSoft’s EPR was selected after a very intensive RFP process by the City of Arlington.

The proposed and executed solution connected the City’s own public-facing portal, ArlingtonPermits.com, which is used by applicants to submit documents into the existing workflow process, with both AMANDA and EPR. This deployment facilitated the exchange of information from the City of Arlington’s backend system into EPR to provide a seamless, single sign-on experience for the City’s internal intake and review staff.

ArlingtonPermits.com is the central place where City applicants can access permitting information. When applicants are ready to submit the application, they click ‘apply’ on the City’s permitting website and are taken to the AMANDA permitting platform. From there, general requirements such as what kind of permit is required, what kind of dwelling type is being built, and more are filled out. The application is checked for completeness in AMANDA, and when the record is saved and submitted it is automatically transferred over to EPR for City review staff to access. When applicants want to review their permit application status, they can then access all information from the ArlingtonPermits.com portal.

Integration with e-PlanREVIEW® with AMANDA:

e-PlanREVIEW® is connected as a bi-directional integration to AMANDA, which enables permit application data to be exchanged between both systems and keeps data in sync. From the municipal permitting website, applications are filled out and accessible to submit through AMANDA. The applicant starts the process by creating a new building permit application in AMANDA. During the building permit creation process the applicant uploads all required plans as part of the application. At the time of upload, the system initiates the PDF Scout™ inspection tool to analyze incoming plan review documents for potential issues, such as password restrictions that block pdf access. Scout™ will return a response to the applicant, rejecting any plans that do not pass validation.

Plan review documents that are validated may be uploaded to the AMANDA back office.

The AMANDA system creates the building permit application and assigns the project intake workflow task for the new building permit application to the appropriate client staff. Once a permit application has been submitted and accepted by City intake staff, it will be pushed to
e-PlanREVIEW® where it will be available for review staff. Reviewers will markup, comment on, or stamp plans as appropriate, provide assignment status, and this information will be communicated back to the AMANDA system. As appropriate, marked up or approved plans will be made available to the applicant.

e-PlanREVIEW’s APIs communicate via the AMANDA API with AMANDA and are connected to the City portal through additional integration. For municipalities that do not already have a customer portal, the e-PlanSoft’s own goPost™ Public Portal is a great option that can enable applicants to submit permit applications, upload and resubmit plans for review, manage document versioning, access reviewer comment reports, and download deliverable packages. There is no cost to applicants to create a goPost account and they have full access to submit plans 24/7.

e-PlanREVIEW®, with connectivity to AMANDA, will provide the following functionality:

  1. Accept permit data, plan review documents from AMANDA.
    1. Incoming plan review documents are evaluated in AMANDA by our PDF Scout™ inspector tool. Documents not approved by Scout™ will not be accepted for electronic plan review.
  2. Manage plan review document versioning.
  3. Create plan review assignments for City staff to complete using EPR.
  4. Receive updates from AMANDA to the permit data record. (For example, when the project is closed in AMANDA).
  5. Conduct web-based, simultaneous plan reviews.
  6. Complete each plan review assignments in EPR by choosing either ‘acceptance’ or ‘resubmit’ status.
    1. Notify City staff when plan review assignments are complete so that the review plans can be returned to AMANDA.
  7. Generate Correction Reports.
  8. Check-in ‘reviewed plans’, correction reports, and any supporting documentation to the AMANDA back office, for the return to the applicant in AMANDA, as appropriate.
  9. Check-in approved plans to the AMANDA back office for long-term retention.
  10. Receive ‘corrected plan sets’ from AMANDA for back check.
    1. Carry forward existing markups and comments to the most recent document version.
    2. Reset existing assignments to a ‘Not Started’ status.
  11. Apply electronic ‘stamps’ to the reviewed plans, as appropriate.
  12. Manage EPR permissions, pre-configured for best practices for each user role, as desired.
  13. Configure Correction Report templates with City-specific labeling and instructions.
  14. Modify/manage email alert notifications to EPR users, as desired.
  15. Import/manage standard comments and checklists into the EPR Comment Library for use by the plan review staff.
  16. Utilize EPR for paper plan reviews!

Overall integration with AMANDA minimizes costs for maintaining and configuring the application over the long term. This integration with e-PlanREVIEW® also provides many benefits to municipal staff:

  1. It reduces the need for staff to physically manage paper plans.
  2. Facilitates real-time collaboration between reviewers and case managers, even when in different departments and locations.
  3. Implementation with AWS provides low onboarding costs and unlimited file storage.
  4. There are no workstation software or plug-ins to install.
  5. PDF Scout™ analyzes all intake documents to prevent non-compliant files from being accepted during intake, such as a password-protected document.
  6. Standard and configurable reports are available for customer corrections.

Efficient collaboration, scalability, and accessibility are all possible with the use of e-PlanREVIEW® integrated with AMANDA permitting. To learn more about the integration capabilities of e-PlanREVIEW®, contact us and a dedicated representative will reach out to help you determine the best option for you: http://bit.ly/demo_REVIEW