Can you transfer a users data to my account?
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Technically yes, legally no. Our terms are quite specific about data ownership, see the below extract with the red highlighted text:

Subscriber Data
By using eToolLCD certain data and design documentation will be uploaded and entered into The Platform. The Subscriber retains all of their right, title and interest in and to its Data, and ownership of such Data shall not be transferred to eTool under this agreement. Subscribers grant eTool a nonexclusive license to use Data to deliver Services to authorized users of the Platform, solely in connection with the Project and further grants eTool a non-exclusive, worldwide, perpetual license to use eToolLCD usage data (such as, by way of example and not by way of limitation, aggregated and / or averaged Project performance information) in an aggregated form that does not identify individual persons or organizations, in order to compile statistics regarding Project life cycle environment and cost impacts, report on eToolLCD usage and/or to improve the Services.

Our agreement is with the subscriber (regardless of who pays the bill for the subscriber).  So for non-enterprise users it’s the user themselves who owns the data.  We can’t transfer it or copy it without their consent.  This is one reason we set the enterprise plan up is so that businesses who want to retain their IP can do so and eTool can support this practice in a legal manner.  If you are a business that wants to retain your IP as staff transition in and out of your organisation, you will need the enterprise plan.

If a non-enterprise user gave us consent to transfer data between accounts the actual process is a manual task that has risk associated with it depending on the data in question.  For this reason, eTool may refuse the request, or charge a fee for the service if it is agreed to proceed.

Can I assign an alternative email for billing purposes?
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Yes and no.  If your business has an enterprise subscription you any member of your organisation with “Admin” rights can enter a “Billing Email” where eTool will send all payment reminders, receipts and subscription notifications.  This is done through the “Organisation Profile” tab in the organisation dash.

If you’re a consultant or open use subscriber unfortunately you cannot assign an alternate billing email within eToolLCD.  However, if for example you work in a business with a separate accounts team who need a copy of the eToolLCD communications, simply set up an email forwarding rule on your email service, for example:

How can LCA models be shared and transferred in eToolLCD?
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The Consultant Plan is intended for individual LCA practitioners. The account is linked with the user email address and all intellectual property (IP) data and LCA modelling belongs to the user and not the organisation who pays for the subscription.

Will your employer want access to your LCA models after you move roles or otherwise stop using eToolLCD? If so, you need the Enterprise or Specialist plan as the Consultant plan does not allow sharing or transferring of models between users during or after your subscription.

eTool set the Enterprise plan so that businesses who want to retain their IP can do so and eTool can support this practice in a legal manner.  If you are a business that wants to retain your IP as staff transition in and out of your organisation, you will need the Enterprise or Specialist plan.

 

How seat sharing works in eToolLCD?
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Once you have set up your Organisation Portal (via Specialist or Enterprise Subscriptions), you are allowed to take advantage of ‘sharing’ purchased Specialist or Enterprise seats across multiple users within the same organisation to help save costs. As long as a user is holding a valid seat (Specialist or Enterprise), the user will be able to work on LCA modelling in the software (i.e. create new projects, edit/update existing projects they are assigned to, submit designs for certification, respond to certification review feedback etc). When that seat needs to be passed on to another user in eToolLCD, that first user will need to be reverted to ‘Read Only’ access first to ‘release’ that seat before it can be assigned to another user.

An organisation may waive the minimum (4) Enterprise seats requirement in order to enjoy the Enterprise Functionality feature if at least one Specialist seat has been purchased. In order for an Organisation to qualify for an Access Fee discount on all their projects, the organisation needs to have purchased at least ONE Specialist seat.

Users can only be assigned as a ‘Lead Author’ or ‘Collaborator’ in a project when they are holding a valid (Specialist or Enterprise) seat. However, once a user has been assigned as the ‘Lead Author’ or ‘Collaborator’ for a project, their roles in the project will remain (Lead Author or Collaborator) even if their seat within the Organisation is changed to ‘Read Only’ or ‘Inactive’ unless it is changed. We recommend retaining the same authors and collaborators in the project even if they are no longer working in the organisation, as long as it is an honest representation of the study (i.e. they were mostly responsible for putting the LCA together). If new users have taken over the project, they can be added as a ‘Collaborator’ and can still submit the design for certification as long as they meet other seat/subscription requirements. Note that the above seat-sharing feature is all manually managed by the Organisation Admin (more info on this here).

We have recently released a new feature that automates the seat sharing functionality within the software. If you would like to know more, please read about our Specialist Hotseat & Specialist External Seat.

Organisations that have a mix of both Specialist and Enterprise seats collaborating on the same project need to be aware that the Enterprise seat users will have a limit of 20 design element changes for each project. Breaching this limit will forfeit the Access Fee discount applicable for the project entitled to the Specialist seat. eToolLCD will warn users in the software if an action from the Enterprise seat user will forfeit the Specialist seat’s Access Fee discount. If this is an issue for the organisation, please consider purchasing more Specialist seats and ensuring that all collaborators on the project are Specialist seat users to avoid inadvertently forfeiting the Access Fee discount.

 

Related articles:

How many certification requests can I submit at a time?

Set your organisation up in eToolLCD – Enterprise Functionality

 

I want to register for the student/researcher account however it keeps asking for my credit card details. How do I register?
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In order to register for the Researcher Account (12 months free), you will still need to fill out your billing details as a placeholder. You won’t be charged for the first 12 months (note the date on when your first bill will be issued as shown in the image below). After the 12 months, you will need to remember to downgrade your plan to ‘Open Use’ otherwise you will be charged as per a normal ‘Consultant’ subscription. More details about each subscription can be found here.

How Many Certification Requests Can I Submit At A Time?
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With any paid subscription, you’re only allowed to submit ONE certification per user (not per seat) at a time. We’ve had this single-certification-at-a-time-feature implemented for a number of months now with huge success among our users. The intention behind it is to ensure that all certifications get closed out as soon as possible rather than being put on hold on for months, or even years.
 

Having certifications in flight for long periods pose a huge vulnerability in the review process as there is no way to ‘lock’ the design from getting edited in the interim. As a reviewer, if weeks/months have passed between reviews, there is no way to ensure that the user hasn’t made any undeclared changes to the design without conducting the review all over again which is time consuming.

Nonetheless, we understand that things can change with projects which are outside of your control (i.e. projects getting put on hold indefinitely). Therefore if circumstances change with a certification where you are unable to update the LCA due to missing information, you can choose the following two options to proceed:

  • RECOMMENDED whenever possible: complete the certification ‘as-is’ so that the design is ‘locked’ which will speed up the future review process if/when the project gets restarted again. This is because the reviewer will only need to compare the difference between the new cloned & updated design versus the previously certified/locked design. This is particularly important especially if the reviewer has already completed the first initial review. Note that you can ALWAYS get your design certified without responding to any of the reviewer’s feedback if you do not wish to do so bearing in mind that the relevant quality checks & comments will be left in question to highlight the reviewer’s concerns for reference.
  • Only if the initial round of reviews has not been completed: ‘Un-certify’ the design to take it off the certification queue. This is only recommended if the reviewer has not started the initial review yet. If the certification has not been assigned to a reviewer then it would be safe for you to take it off the queue. However if it has already been assigned, please notify the reviewer of your intention to take the design off the certification queue before you click ‘un-certify’ so that they won’t inadvertently waste time completing the initial review only to find out that you’ve taken it off the certification queue.uncertify
 
Getting your design certified as quickly as possible is important so that a ‘line can be drawn in the sand’ with regards to where the design is at that point in time and lock the design. When a certification is put ‘on-hold’ and left in-flight, it compromises the review process as it would be inefficient to review the whole design again to ensure no un-declared changes have been made to the design when you’re ready to come back to it. By locking (certifying) the design at the point before it is put on hold, the reviewer has a reliable reference point from which to continue the review of the updated design.
 
Even though the certified design has been locked, you can always clone the design to continue updating it immediately afterwards. All paid subscriptions can have up to 6 certifications per project. Exemptions may be negotiated case by case if you exceed this number, however it is very rare that you’ll need more than 6 designs certified for the same project. For users who may have difficult clients that are constantly requesting for design updates, we suggest that you give them a deadline for their update requests so that you can limit the number of times you’ll need to submit your design for certification.
 
So from a reviewer’s perspective, you don’t submit a design for certification unless it is ready or necessary to be reviewed so that the whole review process can be completed quickly and efficiently to minimise the review process getting compromised.

How Do I Request A Quote or Raise An Access Fee Invoice?
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If you’re on a Consultant or Enterprise subscription, you will need to pay an access fee prior to using eToolLCD to start your project. To raise an invoice for this, you can do so via your eToolLCD dashboard under the ‘Request Quote’ menu.

Even if you do not currently hold an active subscription, you may start the process of finding out which subscription most suits you by requesting a quote anyway.

Alternatively, you can contact our Business Development team directly in the link below:

https://etoolglobal.com/contact/

 

What benefits my organisation gets with the Enterprise subscription?
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Embedding LCA at an organisation level has become easier and will provide added value with centralised ownership of LCA models, floating seats, inter-company collaboration for integrated design and unrestricted number of read-only users.

The Enterprise subscription is suited for organisations with developed LCA capacity working on a variable number of projects who prefer some per-project costs to help manage fluctuations in the work.

Enterprise benefits and features:

  • Higher discount on project fees – 40% discount.
  • Centralised ownership of LCA models and intellectual property with the user project data stored and managed centrally by the organisation.
  • Full inter-company collaboration with floating seats to complete LCA modelling and unlimited read-only users.
  • A User Management Portal in eToolLCD allowing organisations to allocate available seats to active users (floating software subscriptions) and view user’s activities.
  • Advanced eToolLCD training
  • Unlimited “Read Only” seatsSpecialist and Enterprise collaboration

Check out how it works in this quick demonstration:

Collaboration between enterprise and specialist users – An organisation may waive the minimum Enterprise seats required if at least one user is a Specialist Subscriber and providing the Organisation has at least one Specialist Subscriber they will also qualify for all Enterprise Subscriber functionality.

If the Enterprise user is the lead author of the study there will be a project access fee associated with that specific project. If the Enterprise user is just a collaborator in the study authored by the Specialist user then there ́s no access fees. Their only limitation is that the Enterprise user minimises the effort in the study to less than 20 added or edited Design elements. eTool will warn users in the system if an action will forfeit the Specialist Subscriber Access fee waiver.

See additional info on How to set your organisation up in eToolLCD – Enterprise Functionality.

What is the eToolLCD Access Fee and why does eTool charge for it?
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Open Use, Consultant, Researcher and Enterprise subscribers are subject to software Access Fees for any project in eToolLCD that is for commercial gain. Only Specialist subscribers has this fee waived.

What is included? The fees provided are for the complete use of eToolLCD software, including all LCA/LCC features associated with your subscription level, development of new features, software maintenance, life cycle inventory data as well as our unique certification service. Software access fee is paid before you start a new project for commercial gain. The certification involves support for the users conducting the LCA by way of coaching them on the use of the software, how to report and how to build an audit trail of changes in the model. It is an interactive process to ensure users’ model and project not only meets required standards but also gains the most value out of engaging with Life Cycle Design.

Why does eTool charge an access fee? From day one, eTool recognised the importance of comparable and accurate results flowing from our software. By checking users’ inputs, eTool can ensure comparability. ISO 14040 and ISO 14044 standards for LCA call for all studies to be verified by a third party, therefore it made sense for us to offer this certification service as we understand the inner workings of the software which is important for an LCA verification. It also provides us with a revenue model that doesn’t require large upfront fees since the project budget is no longer a key factor in commissioning an LCA, thus allowing the proliferation of affordable LCAs and lower impact buildings.

Additional information can be found at the Project Licenses and Project Certification sections of eToolLCD Software Use Terms and Conditions and eTool Services Specification.

Related article:
Certify your design
eToolLCD Certification Service (Third Party Review)