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NOVEMBER 9, 2021

The Swiss Federal Roads Office (FEDRO) issues over 27,000 special permits for road transportation outside the legal standards every year. Using Flowable Work, our partner mimacom has developed a digital cooperation platform with business process digitalization and automation for the submission, processing and issuing procedure for the special permits.

Whether it’s transport of heavy or dangerous goods, or night or weekend journeys: Special transports require a permit. A great many parties are involved in this process. The transport companies applying for a mandatory special permit for transportation, the canton police and above all, the numerous departments of the national and canton road authorities who are involved in processing the applications.

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Digital transformation in public administration

Processes that were longstanding, but were errorprone and no longer in keeping with the times had pushed the administrators of special transport permits to their limits: The only digital tools available were a long, unintuitive online form, e-mail, text modules in Word, and PDF generators. The manual and heavily paper-dominated process was also cumbersome for the users. Data related to the vehicle and trailers, such as axles and weight, had to be manually copied or reentered again completely for every individual permit.

Efficient digital processes thanks to Flowable Work

The digital collaboration platform provided FEDRO and all other parties involved with highly digitalized process support and automation. On the basis of Flowable Work and in collaboration with mimacom, FEDRO has succeeded in creating a realistic mapping of the workflows to provide digital support and automation for issuing permits along the entire process chain.

The collaboration platform for special transport permits on Swiss roads offers our users convenience and enormously simplifies the application process. The mimacom project team mapped our requirements and processes exactly with Flowable Work.

Marco Piscopo, Technical Project Manager, Swiss Federal Roads Office FEDRO
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User-friendliness from A to Z

The basic idea of human-centered design was the consistent focus behind the realization of the project: The platform is clearly organized and well laid out, allowing users to immediately find their way around, even when using it for the first time. Users especially appreciate the option of storing vehicle data and addresses in their user account and adding them to new applications at the click of a mouse. The platform makes it possible to retrieve the processing status at any time, and allows changes to be made depending on how far an application has been processed. For example, this ensures that applicants know clearly which offices have already processed their application, and where they need to make enquiries if an urgently needed permit has not yet been issued.

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Key elements for the success of the collaboration platform

The comprehensive integration of the platform makes it the pivot point for all road traffic special permits. Alongside the graphical user interfaces for FEDRO employees, the collaboration platform offers a web service for connecting to all canton road traffic offices: A turn-key interface (API) is available to the cantons to connect up their own systems. As an option, the collaboration platform provides a graphical user interface for the cantons until their canton systems can be technically integrated. The online collaboration platform supports the authorities at every step of processing special transport permit applications. The SAP connection makes it possible to transfer issued permits to the FEDRO accounting department for invoicing purposes without any mismatch in media formats. The integration of the traffic licensing information system for automating requests makes it possible for FEDRO to directly validate details on motor vehicles during the application directly from the platform.

Since the online collaboration platform went live, our office has recorded a high increase in efficiency. And we can now say we have also arrived in the digital age when it comes to special transports.

Marco Piscopo, Technical Project Manager, Swiss Federal Roads Office FEDRO
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The outcome

With Flowable Work, mimacom has realized a comprehensive digital solution for FEDRO, which seamlessly guides users through the sometimes very complex process of applying for special road traffic permits. The special permit platform began operation in June 2021 successfully. Employees in the cantons in particular are very satisfied. Over 6000 applications were processed within the first 10 days without any major problems. In addition to the newly created positive user experience and increased efficiency for the customers, the platform also offers FEDRO a whole host of benefits. It simplifies the prioritization of applications and automates the application review process to the greatest extent possible. The solution provides everyone involved an efficient and paperless way to complete the permit approval process. At all times, it is clear to all those involved what the next required steps are and who still has to clarify which issues before the permit can be issued. The increased transparency along the entire process simplifies communication, eliminates sources of errors and increases the efficiency of processing special transport permit applications.

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