Case Study

Jefferson County, CO

In 2000 the IT Department at Jefferson County, Colorado (population 527, 056) issued an RFP calling for a new enterprise software to replace its existing system.

The Challenge

Replace the existing mainframe system with a better and more efficient system.

The Solution

CSDC Systems’ AMANDA was the robust and configurable solution that the county was looking for. Furthermore, AMANDA’s Mobile PAL solution allowed inspectors to store, track and synchronize data while on-site at inspections.

 

The Details

The City chose AMANDA for its flexibility and enhancement possibilities, going live in April 2001. First implemented in the Planning and Zoning department, AMANDA then moved into the departments of Health, Highways and Transportation, the County Attorney’s Office, the Public Trustee’s Office, and Road & Bridges.

Once live with AMANDA, Jefferson County mobilized their inspectors to create even more efficiencies.  Jefferson County processes 70,000 inspections every year using AMANDA. AMANDA’s Mobile PAL module allows the inspectors to store and track data while at onsite and synchronize it with the AMANDA database. A total of 20 building department inspectors and 8 health department inspectors use AMANDA’s Mobile PAL inspection software on portable Palm Pilots, for a fully integrated on-site inspection tool. It utilizes CSDC’s Inspection Routing Module to provide navigation and geolocation features using Global Positioning System (GPS) technology.

“AMANDA, when we first implemented it, was really geared towards the way we did business before – we kept the same flow, so we didn’t have a lot of change for people to deal with. But now with the enhancements we’re using – one being the Mobile application – we are really changing the way we’re doing business.”

Ed Peck, Project Manager for Jefferson County’s Building Department

The manual note-taking process was replaced with Palm Pilots, a much more effective and automated solution.

“The question keeps coming up: how do you get your inspectors – since most of their backgrounds are basic construction trades and technology really isn’t their thing – to accept Mobile PAL. But the good thing about this mobile application is it really sold itself.”

Ed Peck, Project Manager for Jefferson County’s Building Department

Now inspectors click on an address listed in their AMANDA to-do list and get voice-activated GPS directions to lead them from one inspection to the next. While GPS was already used in the County, integrating it into AMANDA meant that coordinates could be stored directly within the system’s database – making it easier to find past infractions during subsequent inspections. This feature makes the GPS software more user-friendly for inspectors.

The inspectors use a signature pad attached to their Mobile PAL devices. This allows property owners and contractors to sign inspections in the field. The signature and inspection notes are stored together and are admissible in court, if needed. This technology is also used successfully in the County’s Health Department. It was one of the requirements before starting Mobile PAL in the field.

“All the history is there, so if they go for a final mechanical and they want to see if the rough was signed – what the corrections were – that’s all in the mobile application. They’ve got, basically, in a small little PDA, just about everything that’s on the AMANDA database related to that property,”

Ed Peck, Project Manager for Jefferson County’s Building Department

AMANDA has helped simplify the job of inspectors and improved intra-departmental communication.

“We are looking to the future to go ahead and do even more enhancements,”

Jeff Peck, Project Manager for Jefferson County’s Building Department

Jefferson County also plans to integrate a full e-Enterprise system that allows applicants and contractors make requests for permits online, 24X7. The system would expand the County’s current I-to-I program. Integrated with AMANDA, this will allow applicants and citizens to view their permit status and development applications online.

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