Shellharbour’s eDA: dynamic and multifunctional

Shellharbour City Council’s Electronic Development Application (eDA) enables applicants to lodge a development application online and then track Council’s processing of the application through to its conclusion.

The program was developed by Australian firm Internetrix in conjunction with the Shellharbour City Council.

When released in March 2003, eDA was Australia’s first fully online development application process.

This online application platform supports a high degree of customisation to meet individual council’s requirements. A number of other councils are now using this program.

At Shellhabour, authorised members of the public with internet access, including residents, ratepayers and developers, can log in at any time using their individual username and password. They can complete any of the 19 available online applications, including development applications, complying development certificates and construction certificates.

When a new application is entered, it is moved to submitted status, and an email goes to Council’s customer service staff alerting them that the application has been submitted.

Through a mechanism similar to an electronic sticky note on a digital file, known as diary entries, staff can track the progress of an application, communicate with each other and even delegate activities and responsibilities. Diary entries can also be emailed to customers, which saves considerable time when compared to the time taken to create and post traditional letters and other correspondence.

eDA is a dynamic, multifunctional information tool that greatly increases productivity and efficiency for both customers and council staff. Customers no longer have to visit council offices to lodge applications or check on the progress of an application, but can log in at any time and follow the progress of the application in real time.

From the council’s perspective, eDA allows for faster response time, cuts down on time spent in receiving and returning phone calls, and gives planners more time to actually assess applications.

Additional funding under the Regulation Reduction Incentive Fund enabled the eDA to be developed to convert any application based document processes into e-format and be nationally compliant through NeDA.

The new version is now known as OASIS (Online Application System and Information Service) which refers to the ability of the tool to deliver true eServices to constituents but also the ability to provide relevant supporting information in the pre application phase.

Relaunched as OASIS in February 2007, the 19 application types that OASIS supports includes other business certificates (Section 149s & Section 603s) and requests, online self auditing of waste management and online submission of annual Fire Safety Schedules.

The ultimate goal is a ‘cradle to grave’ process whereby all applications can be submitted, tracked, approved, inspected and finalised electronically.

The system is comparable to ‘Best of Breed’. It is cost effective and compatible to allow any Council within Australia to comfortably incorporate this suite of tools into their IT system.

Further information visit www.lgonline.com.au or contact Grant Meredith at Shellharbour City Council on (02) 4221 6111.