ArticlePaper Plan Reviews – Starts with “P” for “Pain” and “Problems” - How an Electronic Plan Review Solution Can Reduce Workers’ Comp Claims - e-PlanSoft

March 31, 2021by Juli Rose

You’ve heard about so many of the reasons why it’s time to leave your paper plan reviews in the past and go digital. But here’s one reason you may not have factored into the decision – pain and injury.

You know the paper rolls of blueprints are bulky, cumbersome, cost thousands of dollars in printing per project, and take up a LOT of space, but have you thought about what it takes to physically move them? Even from desk to desk or by a rolling cart. Agency staff is literally wearing out or even breaking their backs to move plans from one reviewer to the next and back again. Think about it – the rolls are heavy and not conveniently shaped for lifting even for a short distance, such as from a desk to a cart. One slip while trying to pick a plan up correctly, and there’s a Workers’ Comp. injury that can cost ultimately thousands of dollars with possibly no “back to work” date in sight.

According to The Travelers Companies, strains and sprains are the most common worker injury and worker injuries are most frequently the result of materials handling incidents. In fact, material handling tops the list of causes for worker injuries at 32% of total claims.

The health and well-being of the workforce are, of course, a top priority. It is the obligation of employers, including in the public sector to provide a safe workplace for its employees, including the work expected of employees and the equipment and materials provided to accomplish that work.

The greatest asset of any organization is its people. Each employee has earned their position based on their ability and expertise, gained from education and time on the job. However, when an employee suffers an injury from lifting and moving rolls of paper plans that are bulky and heavy, the agency loses a part of their workforce, at least for the short term, and possibly for the long term.

The injured employee is inflicted with pain and suffering, as well as costly treatment, and the lost capacity to work and enjoy their life.  But consider that the agency also suffers the loss. Of course, coworkers and supervisors feel compassion for their injured colleague, but the agency is affected in a more tangible way, as well.

The organization is faced with an unexpected and extended absence. It will need to first redistribute work to other employees who are already working at full capacity. Then it will also need to hire temporary help, which can turn into a long-term hire. As you know, the cost of a new hire is high, in the form of recruitment, screening, and selection, and then ultimately training. It’s not uncommon to take months to bring a new hire up to speed – and that translates to lost productivity.  The agency becomes less efficient, work backs up, and constituent satisfaction goes down.

But did you know that worker injury from lifting and moving rolls of paper plans is 100% avoidable?

Smart agencies have transitioned to a cloud-based electronic plan review process. The electronic plan review method allows agencies to perform fully paperless plan reviews. Their efficiency increases, turnaround time for plan reviews reduces by as much as 50%, and all plans are submitted, returned, and resubmitted electronically through an online portal. There is no need to receive, move, or store old paper plan rolls. And since intake is performed online, it can be done at any time of day or night, as set by the agency, without overburdening agency staff to physically receive plans.

e-PlanREVIEW® from e-PlanSoft is a leading cloud-based electronic plan review solution, adopted by agencies across the country. e-PlanREVIEW virtually eliminates the need to ever lift or carry a paper plan again. And that’s very good news to the staff that has been expected to literally do the heavy lifting while reviewing plans. While it’s sparing the backs of your workforce, e-PlanREVIEW’s automatic notifications and real-time remote collaboration improves communications and reduces the lag time that occurs routinely with paper plan reviews.

Want to see how else your agency can benefit from e-PlanREVIEW electronic plan review?
Request a demo, or take it for a test drive today at https://eplansoft.com/request-a-demo/.


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