The Importance of NASSCO Certification

NASSCO’s certification program ensures PACP software meets performance standards.

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When it comes to NASSCO’s Pipeline Assessment and Certification Program, maintaining integrity in certified software is paramount to achieving our mission to set standards for the assessment, maintenance and rehabilitation of underground infrastructure and to ensure the continued acceptance and growth of trenchless technologies. 

It’s easy to determine if software has been certified by NASSCO for use with PACP (as well as the manhole and lateral assessment programs) because all certified software is listed at All data collection software vendors listed on NASSCO’s website have proven their ability to both import and export the standard NASSCO transfer file (version 6.0 or 7.0), and NASSCO has successfully tested each company’s product.

Do not be fooled by software vendors that use terms such as “compliant” or “compatible” when describing their software product’s ability to work with NASSCO’s PACP, as these terms are misleading, and the software has most likely not been certified by NASSCO.

Software programs that are certified by NASSCO provide a wide variety of features to allow utility owners to evaluate assets, assist with determining corrective measures and help prioritize rehabilitation work. NASSCO PACP certification means that bidders are able to use any of the certified data collection software packages listed on the NASSCO website. Each software vendor has developed valuable tools to facilitate the management and utilization of data collected in the field to include automatic validation of PACP data, the creation of different reports, the ability to manipulate and query data to support rehabilitation recommendations, and product support.  

One of the best ways to ensure NASSCO’s PACP-certified software is used to maximize inspection results is through education. System owners may issue a bid for a PACP product but might also require a specific software. This eliminates one of the best financial benefits of using PACP, which is that any contractor using any NASSCO PACP-certified software can provide you with a deliverable you can use. 

Municipalities that specify a specific software are paying contractors to purchase and learn a new software package, rather than bid using the software they have. Allowing contractors to use their own NASSCO PACP-certified software increases competitive bidding and saves the owner money.

Since using PACP-certified software can also mean a significant learning curve for employees not used to importing from the PACP transfer file into computerized maintenance management systems, into work order programs or even into other PACP-certified software, our job is also to work with vendors to make that process less painful.

In general, some municipalities may not understand the structure of PACP and its databases or realize that once a field is added or a code is changed, it is no longer PACP. This is true, in part, because they don’t use the software every day. Therefore, it is our job to provide cities with the education they need in order to receive and appreciate the many benefits of PACP, including the use of NASSCO PACP-certified software.


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