Provide a clear description of Project management responsibilities between the City and the Selected Vendor.
We provide a setup checklist at the beginning of the project. It will be the City’s responsibility to provide us with the permit and license applications, fee schedules, inspection types, review activity types, output documents like certificates of occupancy, the City’s logo, inspection checklists and report formats, etc. We perform the setup. Once 50% complete we schedule weekly meetings to do walk-throughs with the departmental staff at the City. The City staff needs to attend the meetings and provide definitive feedback on the setup. If there are disagreements among the departmental staff we will need to have executive sponsorship that can quickly make a call on staff disagreements.
IT projects have significant risks when a legacy waterfall approach is used or when software is being developed (software coding). Citizenserve setup does not require coding and our support is unlimited. So we have never had a project fail or even had a dispute with a customer. We work with large customers and small customers and typically adjust to whatever is needed to get the job done. Each department at the City may require a different approach. The main point we want drive home is we are flexible depending on the needs of our customers. Citizenserve is a pay-as-you-go subscription to permitting, licensing and inspection software. We are motivated to keep our customers happy so they renew their subscriptions.
How do you propose to keep the Project on task?
The best approach we have found is to have one or two scheduled meetings per week during the setup. This is per permitting or licensing department. Each department can be implemented separately. We start the weekly meetings once we are 50% complete with the respective department setup. The meetings are basically a walk-through of the setup. This way the users can see and work with the system while the setup is being completed. This approach keeps the permitting and licensing software end-users involved so there is 100% buy-in with the application setup, fee calculations, workflow processes, inspection forms, letters, etc. End-users involved in the setup meetings rarely need much training because they were involved in the setup process.
What sets your firm’s product being proposed apart from your firm’s competitors?
The software is great because we only have one version and it is a 13 year accumulation of great ideas our customers have provided regarding improvements and features they wanted. But the main thing that sets Citizenserve apart is the unlimited customer support. Citizenserve is pay-as-you-go, so we essentially work for renewals. The unlimited support includes adding new processes, setting up new features, configuration changes, ongoing training and custom reports.