3 ways digital solutions can improve code enforcement in communities.

Photo by Caspar Rae on Unsplash

Introduction

Digital solutions are a growing trend in the Code Enforcement industry. Code enforcement helps to improve communities by enforcing code and safety laws that protect people’s homes, businesses, and properties. Code enforcement such as responding to things like graffiti, littering, junk, or abandoned cars, etc. helps to improve the quality of life for citizens and eventually helps to transform the community as the best place to live, work and play. This is by no means an exhaustive list, rather a few examples of how code enforcement can positively impact a community.

Digital solutions can help Code Enforcement improve communities in three important ways: The three ways digital solutions can improve code enforcement are by increasing efficiency, improving citizen engagement, and maximizing resources.

1.Increasing Efficiency with Digital Solutions

Some code enforcers have to attend to dozens of violations every day. These obligations often lead them to ignore the more ‘minor’ infractions that require their attention. However, digital solutions can make it possible to better prioritize Code Enforcement’s tasks and respond to violations more efficiently. It also helps avoid repetitive work. Code enforcement agents can input all required data directly instead of recording things on paper first and inputting it when they are able to return to a computer. When Code Enforcement has to make a referral, they can send the information electronically instead of printing it out and going to multiple offices.

2.Improving Citizen Engagement with Digital Solutions

Digital solutions improve citizen engagement by allowing Code Enforcement agents to communicate more efficiently with citizens. Code enforcement agents can easily keep property owners informed about problems that need their attention. Code enforcement agents can also use digital solutions to easily refer potential Code violations directly to the right parties, reducing unnecessary work for Code enforcement agents and keeping property owners informed. Code enforcement agents can also communicate with citizens through a secure website instead of calling or emailing individual citizens. Finally, digital solutions engage citizens and customers by providing them the opportunity to submit Code violation concerns and requests for service online. This is a trend that Code Enforcement offices across the United States and many other countries are adopting rapidly. Constituents are growing to expect services online and code enforcement is no exception. This is again not an exhaustive list but rather some clear examples of how digital solutions can help code enforcement agents improve citizen engagement in communities.

3.Maximizing Resources with Digital Solutions

Digital solutions can help code enforcement agents maximize resources in two important ways. First, they can save time by utilizing an automated data collection system to keep track of when code enforcement responses fall beyond the code enforcement office’s deadline and then follow up accordingly with all involved parties. Second, code enforcement agents no longer have to print out pictures or documents for code. Instead, they can take photos and upload them directly to code enforcement records. This makes it faster and simpler for code enforcement agents to maximize their access to information in both an office setting and while away from the office.

Conclusion

Code enforcement is a key element of local government and code enforcement agents deserve the tools they need to do their jobs well. Code enforcement is a complex job that requires highly-trained professionals who have a firm understanding of many different areas of expertise including code, safety, building construction, sewer maintenance, and more. Code enforcement also has a responsibility to work with the community and code enforcement should provide the best possible service. Code enforcement must also work to keep pace with technology and digital solutions can help do that. Code enforcement has a major impact on communities and will continue to do so as more code enforcement offices adopt digital technology to improve their office’s efficiency, citizen engagement, and maximize resources available for code enforcement agents.

About the authors:  

Hannah Hiller

Hannah is a professional content creator and writer. After graduation from the Public Relations program at Cambrian College, Hannah has gone on to start a successful freelance writing career. She is passionate about bringing words to life in a way that makes complicated topics more approachable. From website content to full articles, Hannah loves to find ways to communicate with any audience effectively. She currently lives and works in Sudbury Ontario.  

Joseph  Edward

Joseph founded INVORG focusing on a client-centric service delivery platform for innovating local organizations, not-for-profits, home and community support  organizations, and small to medium-sized businesses. Joseph holds a Chief  Information Officer Certification from Carnegie Melon University, USA, and from the US General Services Administration. He is an IT veteran with over 20 years of leadership in technology, including four years as CTO for the city of London. 

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