Getting Contractors On-Board with Technology

APA North Carolina Chapter


Friday, September 29, 2017
8:30 a.m. - 9:45 a.m. EDT

CM | 1.25

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Educating department leaders on engaging the public who submit plans, apply and pay for permits, and otherwise interact with the planning departments. Supplying tools to make sure the contractors know about and use digital submittal, giving the city the greatest return on their investment and streamlining the internal workflow. 

The goal of this lecture is to give planning officials the tools to engage the public in an effective manner. With more and more jurisdictions investing in software to digitize their departments they need to inform and train the public so they use the online portals. The Contractor Onboarding Program aims to have the highest percentage possible of online applications, inspections scheduled and payments made.

The session will begin with results from a survey done with greater Charlotte area contractors and developers about online permit and plan submittals. Their feedback can be used to market the online tools to contractors in any area.

Following the survey will be examining internal policies and tactics to make sure the staff are well informed. The tools include staff training, specific communication with key staff members about their role when transitioning to digital submittals, and walking through an online permit application with the group. An additional focus will be on the importance of the online portal link on city or county web pages.

Thirdly, we will take time to go over an email education campaign to the contractors and developers. This step is the primary activity of the onboarding program with our clients. The emails directly work to engage the contractors and improve the percentage of applications received online.

A four email series spaced out over two months gives the contractors, developers and members of the public reminders of the online application option and its main benefits to the contractors themselves. The emails focus on education, convenience, training, time savings and efficiency for contractors and their staff.

Finally, Brian Matthews from Union County, NC will speak on his experience with the program at Union. Our clients have seen the percent of online permit and plan submittals double, from 27% to over 60% through running the program. With those results their staff are able to move more fully into their role within the software and keep the workflow moving smoothly.


Brian Matthews

Invited Speaker

Brian Matthews is the Executive Director of Growth Management at Union County North Carolina. Previously he was Town Manager for the Town of Stallings and Planning Director of the Town of Halifax, North Carolina. His career and education have been in the planning field giving him excellent perspective in working ... Read More

Lindsey Hogg

Invited Speaker

Lindsey gained her BA degree in communications from Westmont College in 2006. In her eleven years of industry experience, she has established brand development projects and trade show organization management. Her recent focus has been on on-boarding processes for city and county government. Her passion is to see Clients get ... Read More

Contact Info

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