Author Archives: April

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Inspection of Plans

3 Reasons to Switch to Electronic Plan Review

Category:Trends Tags : 

Changing from paper plan reviews to an online electronic process is a quickly growing area of interest in the industries we serve. Emerging technologies have made this easier and more efficient. With the advances in technology providing large screen monitors, graphic design programs and the internet, we no longer need to rely on rolls of paper.

To make the decision easier, we’ve compiled the top 3 reasons to switch to an electronic environment. And not just for plan reviews.

1. Centralized Plan Management

Reduce Storage Space

Large plans require storage space until reviews are completed. With electronic processing, the space need is eliminated. For example, documents can be stored on a network, in a database, or in the cloud. No more storage room needed.

Document Security

Plans can be lost or misplaced when passing plans between departments. This adds time and frustration to your project. With digital storage, you will always know where the plans are. And everyone has access to them.

Access plans quickly

Accessing physical plans and documents can be a hassle. This is a hassle. Access your plans anywhere, anytime. This adds to the time saved. For instance, you will no longer need to swing by the office to pick up forgotten plans on your wait to an inspection.

Avoid loss, damage or delay after a natural disaster

Planning for a natural disaster is not a popular subject, however, it is one that should take place. Damage to a facility results in damage to stored assets. This adds time to an already lengthy process. With electronic storage, these items are safe from disaster. Immediately pick up where you left off.

Building Plans
Digital Building Plans are efficient

2. Review Management

Reduce processing time up to 50%

Time is money. Time to print multiple copies, deliver and distribute plans, share with other departments and request corrections. Rinse and repeat. And this can continue for up to 18 months. Instantly receive plans in numerous locations. Approve plans quickly with improved communications. As a result, faster review processes, lead to earlier development and tax collection for your city.

Skip the economic costs and wasted time. CAD programs can save digital plans. With plans submitted electronically, communications are instant for correction requests. Re-submit plans and finalize approvals faster.

Additionally, Codepal can reference your purchased codebooks instantly. No more digging for the code to refrence or misquoting code. Set up a list of frequent reference for a faster result.

Parallel reviews

Conducting plan reviews shouldn’t be like herding cattle. Digital files are easily shared and reviewed. Therefore, all departments are working simultaneously.

Coordinated Review Notes

During a plan review, multiple people in your city are handling the plans and making notations. This can be counter-productive to your communication efforts. For this reason, coordinating your notes in one accessible location breaks through the communication barrier.

3. Improved Service

Open 24 hours a day

For your community, having open hours to submit applications and plans are a huge success. For contractors, taking time from their heavy workload to stop by an office when it is open is inconvenient. Equally important, your staff will not spend their time working with customers, if they are collecting electronic documents online.

Communication abilities increased

As stated above, communication is challenging. With Codepal, your staff has access to a complete history. Also, you gain the ability to send communications with anyone detailing the entered notations. As a result, you will save time typing out communication for details you’ve already entered.

Reduced management and archiving costs

Storing and archiving plans can be labor intensive and expensive. Moving to an electronic environment eliminates this problem. Because filing and document tracking are automatic it eliminates the need for physical document management.

Economic Value

The economic value saved by gas cost for travel, printing costs for plans and documents, and storage space no longer needed adds up to substantial savings all around. Of course, this could fluctuate based on fuel costs, travel distance and copies. But the value adds up quickly.

The time and money saved using electronic plan reviews are obvious. The frustration saved is priceless.

Interested in more information about our Plan Review process? Click here for more information or call us at 217-787-1133

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Hello 2019

Good bye 2018

Category:Communications Tags : 

As we begin to wrap up 2018 and begin a new year, we look back on our accomplishments. We’ve welcomed many new clients this year and served many of our existing clients in new and exciting ways. We continue to work on ways to communicate with our clients and our support is still unbeatable. If you speak with our clients, we exceed expectations above all others. We remain true to our clients providing them access to our staff. When you call our office, often you’ll speak directly to a developer. We mean it when we say, we want the software to provide you with the best experience possible.

As part of our preparations for 2019, we’re adding this blog to share more information with you and collaborate on exciting trends in your area of expertise and ours.

Be sure to check out our Facebook page for updates and general humor.
Just a little new year humor

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Pete Terenzi

Big tasks take bold leaders.

Category:Success Story Tags : 

When Pete was appointed as the Fire Marshal in the Town of Old Saybrook, he was tasked with trying to ascertain how many buildings required inspections and setting up schedules to maintain current compliance with State Statutes and National codes. He was facing huge challenges, with nothing truly computerized, tracking and security were difficult. Being involved in several public integrity cases, it was critical for him to have a software package with accountability and tracking that could keep compliance tracking easy.

Quote from Pete

Codepal was referred to Pete by another Connecticut Fire Marshal, Vernon Skau, from New London. ‘After a little time with a portable tablet, it was obvious this was the expeditious way of completing transactions. However, the number one valued asset we were looking for was support for the product once in place and that turned out well above our expectations. The owner of Codepal came to my office to meet with me face to face to assure my needs were met, I was sold. Not every software company owner will come to a small town to meet with a potential client, regardless that I was one man, not a huge organization. I was treated equally as important as a large client. They provided people on site that took me through the setup, how to use the program and went into the field to assess and adjust the program as I needed. Between value, cost, and service, the end cost of the product is by far the most economical for any Fire Marshal office trying to get themselves into the 21st century.’

Flexibility in the software gives Pete the forms and reports he needs in one place.

‘Having the ability to design my own forms or input state forms such as administrative cause and origin warrants, all permitting and search and seizure to name a few, is an outstanding feature of Codepal. Data simply moves into Codepal with minimal time to import. I’m now able to break out, organize, prioritize and manage our inspectable properties. I now can design, plan and implement on my own without having to go to Codepal to design every piece of the system. However, when I have a question or issue, each and every call has been answered by people that individually know, recognize and are able to deal with the issue via the web in literally seconds. My data and checklists are never lost, this system offers unbeatable record management services.’

Saving time and money, while reaching your goals is priceless.

‘Cost savings in the field, in terms of time management, cut the job down to a quarter of the time that used to be necessary to inspect, document and issue a report. The reports look professional and are easily emailed, printed in the car or can be mailed which gives Fire Marshals’ the flexibility needed based on assets available to do the job. I’m able to reference NFPA Codes, Connecticut Fire Safety Codes, and general Connecticut Statutes quickly with a click of the mouse, easily pulling them into my report. I can add photos and use speech to text to complete something as detailed as a major arson investigation or as simple as a permit.’

Legal issues and inspection liability is an unfortunate topic of the times. The issue is prevalent in Connecticut as well.

‘Considering recent court decisions that have been handed down regarding Fire Marshal responsibilities, duties, statutory mandates and obligations, in the state of Connecticut; Codepal affords me the comfort in knowing I’m able to track, maintain and report data to anyone at any time. This protects my office and my integrity allowing me to focus on the community I serve.’ Pete was tasked with developing a plan; he accepted the challenge and turned it around. ‘With Codepal, I was able to set up my 1, 2, 3 and 4-year inspections, state permits, tank pulls and more. I can easily handle issuing everything in a smooth transition from issue to delivery. The ease of using the program for someone who may not be computer literate is truly an asset. We met all our intended goals; keeping the board of selectmen informed of ongoing inspections through daily, weekly, monthly and annual reports. And communications with our citizens and businesses are sent in a timely manner.‘

Pete Terenzi - Town of Old Saybrook Fire Marshal
Pete has been the Town of Old Saybrook Fire Marshal since June of 2017. Previously, he was a Lieutenant Colonel and commanding officer of Field Operations for the Connecticut State Police, he retired with 30 years on the job.

Town of Old Saybrook, CT Fire Marshal Facebook Page