Steven oversees the production process for all new codes and code updates, organizing and assigning projects, working with editorial staff and providing quality control while also actively editing and updating codes.
Our founder and president, Margaret Bustion, got her start as a Managing Editor with Book Publishing Company in Seattle. Margaret wanted to start a family, so she left Book Publishing, got her MBA while raising her two sons, and founded her own company in 1989.
For more than two months now, CodeTalk has covered topics related mostly to the editing side of the codification industry and the services Code Publishing offers to customers. Today’s post focuses on the sales side of the business.
All of our posts so far on CodeTalk have focused on real, tangible subjects. As such, our first blog post of 2016 is a fun, hypothetical thought experiment: what if the United States switched to the metric system? And, more specifically, what would the repercussions be in the codification industry?
In case you missed it, print is dying. Not just in the codification industry (as we’ve previously discussed), but newspapers, magazines, and other publications are also slowly headed towards the big paper mill in the sky. However, there are still a few things physical newspapers are utilized for. One of those things is legal notices.
When we launched CodeTalk last month, one of our goals was to not only discuss topics related to the codification industry, but also identify and explore legislative trends. Two topics we discussed in our first week were e-cigarettes and recreational marijuana. As discussed in the marijuana post, the passage (overwhelmingly, we might add) of voter initiatives legalizing recreational marijuana in Washington and Colorado in 2012 didn’t come without backlash. Numerous cities and counties in both states have passed moratoriums on growth, processing and sales of marijuana.
Last week’s blog entry on zoning code construction included multiple graphics illustrating the difference between static and scrolling table headers. Scrolling headers make online codes much easier to use because it eliminates the need to scroll up to reference the headers for a single (or multiple) columns. Scrolling headers is one of our most popular advanced features, yet underutilized in the codification industry.
Last week’s blog entry addressed code numbering, and how a three-decimal numbering scheme is Code Publishing Company’s preferred format. We mentioned how there are similarities across multiple codes, including municipalities hundreds of miles away from each other. Where codes often deviate is the zoning chapter. These codes go by one of a few names: Development Code, Zoning Code, Planning Code, or a combination of those terms (e.g., Planning and Development).
It also saves customers money, because Code Publishing provides PDF files for free. This isn’t the case with some of our competitors, who may charge $150 or more – to their own customers – for the same service. The high fees are a result of competitors offering low cost editorial services. The low cost is offset by the PDF file pricing, which is passed along to non-jurisdiction subscribers who order print copies of full codes and updates.
Code Publishing has never employed this sales method, and has managed to remain competitive in the industry. Considering online codes are the new norm, paying high fees for PDF files – no matter the reason – is becoming increasingly unnecessary. Also, remember our previous post about how to obtain a copy of an old version of a code? Code Publishing also provides PDF files of those full codes, as well as individual supplements, to customers free of charge.
Managing a large document such as a municipal code requires a numbering scheme that is efficient for both users – government, law firms, developers, etc. – and editors who update the books. For this reason, Code Publishing Company employs a three-factor decimal numbering scheme that makes amending and referencing the code a much easier task. Here’s how CPC’s numbering scheme breaks down: