Scout PDF Inspector

How Does Scout Work and What Does it Do?

Our Scout PDF Inspector tool is embedded into e-PlanREVIEW® and our goPost Customer Portal, as well as EPR Connect API.
Scout can identify some known issues in the PDF files, prior to assignments being created. Documents that do not pass Scout inspection will not proceed for plan review.

Incoming plan review documents are uploaded to a temporary location on the e-PlanSoft server. Scout performs a ‘read analysis’ to identify known issues that will prevent EPR from accepting the document for plan review.

Once the Scout inspection finishes, a json response is returned and the documents are deleted from the server.

During the file intake process, PDFs uploaded for plan review are analyzed online via our PDF Scout inspector.

In EPR, the inspection happens on the Documents Upload page. Attachments are not analyzed by Scout because attachments are not used to create plan review assignments.

All public facing portals/customer portals should implement calls to Scout to evaluate whether plan review documents are acceptable, so the customer can resolve the issues prior to the documents being uploaded to EPR.

*Best Practices
EPR will not accept plan review documents rejected by Scout. All plan review documents must be submitted in PDF format.

Issues that Scout Identifies

Issue Description Solution
File Size Scout accepts files up to 400MB. File sizes larger than 400MB will be rejected. Return to the source document and create PDF files that are below the file size limitation.
Page Count Documents with more than 2,500 pages. Documents with more than 2,500 pages will be rejected.
Paper Size Paper sizes smaller than 8.5″ x 11″ or larger than 36″ x 48″ will be rejected. These limitations are in place because most printers cannot print smaller than 8.5 x 11 and most plotters cannot print wider than 36 inches. Return to the source document and change the paper size to meet the requirements.
Password protection Scout checks for passwords that prevent anyone from opening a PDF. If the PDF cannot be opened, the file will be rejected. Remove the password protection to allow users to open the PDF.
Page Access Scout tries to read each page in the document. If a page is not readable, the file will be rejected. Adobe Reader may report these pages as damaged or in need of repair. Recreate the PDF from the source document using Adobe Pro or Nitro Pro.
Annotations/ Comments An annotation is any ‘object’ that appears in the Adobe Reader ‘Comment’ panel. It could be a ‘comment’ or ‘stamp’ or font issue like SHX Text from AutoCad. To remove annotations in a PDF, use the print to PDF option. This process removes annotations by “flattening” the PDF.
Page Orientation Having a mix of paper sizes and orientations is not a problem. However, Scout will warn the user if different orientations are found in case the user wants to investigate whether any pages are upside down or improperly oriented. Verify that pages are not upside down or improperly oriented. Orientation issues will not prevent the file from being accepted, but may result in more difficult reviewing conditions for review teams.
Filename Special Characters Scout will warn the user if & # or + characters exist in the filename. This validation is only necessary because some 3rd party electronic document management systems (EDMS) do not accept these characters. Special characters in the filename will not prevent the file from being accepted. We recommend renaming the PDF to remove these characters.

Test out how the Scout PDF Inspector tool works here: