Chicago Department of Buildings


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The Chicago Department of Buildings had two computer systems and one manual system in which it stored microfilm and paper file folders. None of the systems were integrated, data was often out of date and multiple versions of the same information were inconsistent. Often building permits were not issued because the original application could not be found or some of the supporting documentation was lost.

Edge provided services (Edge's Welfare to Work Program Initiative) that scanned in over 7,000,000 images (microfilm) and 250,000 paper documents (commercial building applications) into Edge's IMEDGE image repository. This information was analyzed and an electronic file structure was created to increase the efficiency of the Chicago Department of Buildings.

The process of retrieving file folders and making photocopies was cut from 30 minutes to seconds. Three separate systems were condensed into one. The approval process was drastically reduced from one that could sometimes take over a year to months. Due to the efficiencies gained in managing building permits, more could be issued, building codes could be monitored and workers could be reassigned to other departmental tasks.