Plant Exports Management System (PEMS)

​​PEMS is an IT system that is used by the Department of Agriculture and Water Resources, to capture and store information relating to the export of plants and plant products from Australia, including plant export Authorised Officer (AO) inspection results for product and transport units.

Previously, PEMS only allowed departmental plant export AOs to enter and submit inspection results and any supporting documentation.

In November 2018, the department made PEMS available to industry.

  • Clients can now register for access to PEMS.
  • External AOs can register for access once they have completed facilitated training and assessment delivered by the department (see What training is available? for more information).

The availability of PEMS for industry aims to streamline the plant export inspection documentation process for clients and external AOs, by reducing the need for manual submission and processing of inspection documentation.

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What is PEMS and how will it help me?

  • PEMS allows inspection AOs to enter and submit inspection results, and any supporting documentation, to the department.
  • PEMS allows exporters and EDI users to view inspection records associated with their Request For Permits (RFPs) and upload supporting documentation directly into the system, post-inspection.
  • PEMS allows export registered establishments to view and download inspection records for all inspections conducted at their establishment.
  • PEMS centralises and stores all plant export inspection records and supporting documentation, making record keeping easier and making accessing these records faster.
  • PEMS automatically validates AO competencies and inspection data.
  • PEMS automatically calculates inspection expiration dates. PEMS works on a range of devices including desktop computers, laptops and mobile devices (such as a tablet or iPad) (see What equipment do I need to use PEMS? for more information).
  • PEMS includes an offline mode so AOs can record inspection data even when there is no internet/network connection at the inspection location.
  • PEMS has a user-friendly interface and helpful automated prompts for ease of use.
  • PEMS is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

 

How do I access and register for PEMS?

Clients

Clients can register for access to PEMS at any time. See factsheet How to register for PEMS for more information.

Once registered, if the AO has used PEMS to record the inspection results:

  • exporters/EDI users with access to PEMS will be able to view their RFPs in the system and use it to upload any additional supporting documentation (post-inspection)—rather than submitting these to the National Documentation Hub via email.
  • export registered establishments with access to PEMS will be able to view and download inspection records from all inspections conducted at their establishment.

Note: When Exporter users and EDI users request access under their relevant roles, they will be prompted to provide either their exporter number or EDI user number. Once these details have been provided to the department, all messages and emails will refer to the overarching Exporter Executive role.

Authorised Officers

External AOs will be able to register for access to PEMS once they have completed PEMS facilitated training and assessment delivered by the department. This will occur in a staged approach between October 2018 and September 2019 (see What training is available? for more information).

After completing training and assessment, AOs will be contacted directly by Plant Export Training with instructions on how to register for access to the system.

AOs should check their PEMS profile (including any job functions) is working and accurate prior to undertaking any work in the system.

If there are any issues with your PEMS profile please contact Plant Export Training.

Businesses that use their own electronic export systems

Where a client or AO has an electronic system that is used to record inspections and/or generate export documentation, including an Export Compliance Record (ECR), then this system may be able to integrate with PEMS in the near future.

These businesses are encouraged to use PEMS if it is efficient to do so. However, where this would result in a duplication of work, businesses can continue to use their current system and submit inspection records and additional documents to the department via email, until integration options are complete.

Where a business has an electronic system that is utilised for one step in the export pathway (for example, a container tracking system) then the documents generated by this system can be used to support the inspection process. However, the rest of the inspection should be completed in PEMS.

If you wish to receive information about system integration specifications when they become available, please email the PEMS Administrators.

What training is available?

Clients

Training is not required for exporters, EDI users and export registered establishments. Guidance material is available (see What instructional material is available?).

Authorised Officers

Facilitated training and assessment in PEMS will be delivered to external AOs (see schedule below) and will be carried out by the Authorised Officer Program’s Plant Export Assessors.

Plant Export Assessors will contact AOs individually to arrange their training (including a date, location, and equipment required).

Note: There are no fees associated with this training.

Location Training dates
TAS29 October to 18 November 2018 - COMPLETE
SA19 to 23 November 2018 - COMPLETE
VIC, NSW, WA, NT, QLD2019 (dates to be confirmed)

What instructional material is available?

What types of export inspections does PEMS support?

PEMS supports inspections for almost all plant export job functions, including:

  • plants and plant products, including for protocol markets and nursery products
  • empty bulk vessels and empty containers
  • inspections of growing media.

The following is not currently supported by PEMS and should continue to be recorded manually:

  • re-export phytosanitary certification
  • records for calibration and loading of containers for cold treatments (coming soon)
  • mobile bulk loading inspection records
  • Quality Systems Recognition inspection records (coming soon)
  • Export Compliance Goods Storage inspection records (coming soon)
  • mixed consignments of horticulture and grain product, such as fresh vegetables and dried herbs; and dried fruit and nut mixes.

AOs will only be able to complete inspection records in PEMS for plant export inspections that they are appointed for.

If there are any issues with a PEMS profile or job functions please contact Plant Export Training or call 1800 851 305.

Do I still need to submit inspection records and documentation manually?

Businesses using their own electronic system to record inspections and generate export documentation may be exempt from using PEMS, in which case they will still need to submit their records and documents to the department manually. See Businesses that use their own electronic export systems.

Clients

Exporters nee​d to submit supporting documentation to the department at the required time in the export process, as per the applicable MICoR case and Reference: Plant Export documents and treatments checklist.

Submitting documents before and/or at the time of inspection

If using a department AO, the exporter will still need to email any supporting documents they have at the time of booking to the National Documentation Hub. All other documents that are ready at the time of inspection must be provided to the departmental AO. The AO will validate the documents, then either attach them to PEMS or submit to the National Documentation Hub via email (depending on whether manual processing is required).

If using an external AO, the exporter will still need to provide any supporting documents they have at the time of the inspection to the AO. From November 2018, the AO will then validate the documents and either attach to PEMS or submit to the National Documentation Hub via email (depending on whether the AO has access to PEMS or if manual processing is required).

Submitting documents post-inspection

Where an AO is using PEMS, exporters who are also registered with PEMS should submit any additional post-inspection documentation to the department through the system, rather than submitting via email.

Exporters will need to notify the department via email that their inspection records and supporting documents are available in PEMS, at the time of requesting their RFP authorisation.

Where the AO does not use PEMS, the exporter will need to submit their documentation to the National Documentation Hub via email as per the current process.

Authorised Officers

Submitting documents and inspection records

Once AOs have been given access to PEMS, they should submit all plant export inspection records and relevant supporting documents (such as import permits and pre-inspection treatment certificates) to the department through PEMS, for all available export inspections (see What types of export inspections does PEMS support?).

AOs that have not been trained and assessed in PEMS will continue to use manual inspection records until they have successfully completed their training and assessment and have been given access to PEMS.

Manual records will continue to be accepted via email only where the AO has not yet been trained and registered in PEMS, or where PEMS does not support particular plant export inspection records.

Manual records will also continue to be accepted via email during PEMS outages and maintenance shutdowns.

Signing inspection records

AOs that record and submit inspection results through PEMS are not required to sign the finalised inspection record that can be downloaded for the client. This includes export compliance records, bulk vessel approval records and container approval records.

PEMS has in-built authentication when a user logs into PEMS and as a result, recognises the AO responsible for the inspection record. Due to this user authentication, submission of the inspection record through PEMS is construed as an official inspection record (see the Electronic Transactions Act 1999).

An AO may download and email or print a copy of the PEMS inspection record for the client’s records. These client copies may be signed by the relevant AO on the explicit request from the client.

What support services are available?

IT enquiries

For PEMS system or IT-related issues, email the PEMS Administrator or call 1800 851 305.

Registration or profile enquiries

For registration, access, job function or training and assessment issues please contact Plant Export Training.

Process or system function enquiries

For process or system function issues please first refer to the relevant factsheets and instructional material (see What instructional material is available?) before contacting Plant Export Training or calling 1800 851 305.

What equipment do I need to use PEMS?

To use PEMS, you will need:

  • a desktop computer, laptop or other portable device (such as a tablet or iPad)
  • access to the internet or other network connection through the device
  • an internet browser on the device, such as Internet Explorer or Chrome.

PEMS includes an offline function to allow AOs to record inspection data when there is no internet or network connection, so access to the internet or a network connection is not required all the time.

Note: For more information on how to use PEMS offline to record inspection data, refer to the factsheet How to use PEMS offline and the Plant Exports Management System Authorised officer user guide.

Internet Explorer Compatibility View    

When operating PEMS through Internet Explorer, Compatibility View will impact on the view of the PEMS icon in the department’s self-service portal (the green leaf icon will not display).

You may be prompted by Internet Explorer to disable Compatibility View when opening PEMS. However, Compatibility View will not impact on the operation or look of the PEMS application itself. There is no requirement to disable Compatibility View to operate PEMS in Internet Explorer. You can proceed to enter PEMS by clicking the green square icon on the department’s self-service portal.

Coming soon to PEMS

In 2019, PEMS will be upgraded and will include a number of enhancements, including:

  • Reactivations – AOs will be able to reactivate their own inspections, to correct minor errors, rather than having to ring the AO hotline to request reactivation.
  • Quality System Recognition (QSR) – AOs will be able to complete QSR inspections in PEMS. This will include records of visual inspections for export compliance.
  • Calibrations – AOs will be able to complete calibrations in PEMS, this will include Greenwich Mean Time (GMT) verification, templates for specific countries, and offline functionality.
  • Integration with client systems – There are a number of IT systems involved in the plant export pathway. PEMS will be able to integrate with some of these systems to provide better efficiency in plant export processes.

More information about PEMS 3.0 will be provided in early 2019.

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