PreQualification is tailoring the permit process to the applicant.  Applicants who are prequalfied because of training and/or experienced who prepare document and design packages that are better organized, more complete, and include information which facilitates quick understanding and review, have access to a plan check process from those applicants who are not pre-qualified.

PreQualification can be based on license status; experience, or training.  There is tremendous potential in the area of PreQualification as this means of streamlining has not been well used or considered.
region builders at AIACV (Large)b

One method of creating a PreQualification based program:  An AIA Component works with local regional juridictions to develop a series of classes that cover preparation of documents in accordance with a well developed standard; example standards this program from Florida.  The Classes would be a win – win: a source of non-dues revenue to the component; a competitive advantage for those architects willing to invest the time and money in training; and improved economic conditions in the community resulting from more efficient and effective permit processes.

Florida Technical Guides is an excellent and comprehensive set of tools for establishing permit document packages that are easy to plan check.


One thought on “PreQualification”

  1. mfmalinowskiPost author
    Outline of a PreQualification Program• A working group (with members from both design and regulatory professionals) is created to vet and adopt a set of document content and organization standards for an initial project type (such as small commercial building alteration; or tenant improvements).
    • The working group enlists AIA Austin to put a training program together to cover the use of the standards. This program could become a non-dues revenue source for the component.
    • Participants are trained and tested; those passing the program would be added to a list of ‘pre-qualified professionals’.
    • Plans prepared by ‘pre-qualified professionals’ according to the adopted standards (perhaps indicated by a symbol added to the cover sheet) would save time and money for the jurisdiction; the jurisdiction would in turn create a separate ‘track’ for plan review of these packages. The participating design professional realizes a significant time savings in the permit process.
    • There would be quality control feedback loop for both program refinement and development, and also to insure that ‘pre qualified professionals’ continue to adhere to program standards (or face loss of eligibility).If the beta program proved successful, it could be expanded to additional project types.

    Properly implemented, there is the potential for such a program to be a win-win, with efficiency and effectiveness benefits for ‘both sides of the counter’.

    With plans prepared in a consistent format to make them more clear and easy to review for the permit processing professionals, the resulting increased efficiency could result in time savings for participating professionals.

    A program along these lines is being developed in the Sacramento Region as a cooperative effort involving six different jurisdictions; and it is being evaluated by AIA Austin following a presentation and workshop there by MFMalinowski AIA in November of 2014

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