Where County and City governments are providing forms on their websites – most of these remain in PDF format.
The majority of citizens do not have access to PDF editing software on their PCs, and even fewer have PDF editors on their smartphones or tablets.
The result? Citizens are left having to request a paper form, or print a PDF, and then fill, sign and return by fax, post, or by hand. This can be a major inconvenience for citizens at a time when so many other transactions they deal with are fully online.
For City Departments receiving paper forms, this adds to costs: dealing with incoming mail, having to handle cheque payments, dealing with returns when forms contain errors and omissions, then manually scanning paper forms and manually keying the data.