Electronic forms & paperless inspection solution is the next step for the field technicians & inspectors. Following the transport & logistic industry which moved to electronic forms & mobile devices last decade, it is now the field technicians turn.
How Can Electronic Forms Assist With Your Daily Activities?
How they can you justify spending corporate money and time on a system that automates their inspections. Our response is that the first aspect to take into consideration when justifying spending money is ‘intangible’ benefits that assist with daily activities. The second aspect addresses management and budget considerations using a simple ‘rule of thumb’ to conservatively estimate and measure tangible benefits. Therefore, the same software solution can address a myriad of issues and business processes within your organization, including safety audits of fall protection equipment, lifting and rigging, cranes, OHS, fire protection, HVAC, property audits and pre purchase inspections, etc.
Specifically, how will a paperless Inspection Management Software help you (and your company)?
Simplify daily activities:
If done correctly, automating inspections can dramatically simplify daily processes and speed up tasks compared with paper-based data collection. For example, using barcodes or RFID tags can expedite daily routines with minimal effort and simple setup. Using features such as ‘quick pass,’ which records the results of your visual inspections with literally ‘one click,’ is another way to improve efficiencies. Using speech to text (converting your speech to text and reports) capabilities is another way to save time while recording the inspection/audit result in the field.
Comply with standards and regulations:
Electronic paperless inspections can be based on pre-defined checklists which reference standards and guidelines and ensure that all required information is easily accessible. For example, some of our customers use a variety of standards such as Australian standards, BCA, OSHA Construction Safety which link their inspection findings with the appropriate regulations. Electronic references of such requirements save an enormous amount of time and ensure that reporting is timely and accurate.
Guarantee that activities are performed on schedule:
Paper based activities require significant time investment and/or administrative assistance to ensure that they are performed on time. Paperless inspection software can automatically send reminders and alerts, ensuring that you are informed when inspections are due and alerted when they become overdue or corrective action is required.
Maintain and easily access organized records:
Have you ever tried ‘hunting for’ documents and records, finding that they often seem to be ‘misplaced’ or even worse – cannot be found at all? Few years ago we received a call from one of our customers who was using our software to conduct Fire Safety inspections. They had a fire in their facility and the Fire investigator who was investigating the fire wanted to see their monthly inspection records for the specific floor in which the fire had occurred. To expedite access to their information, they called to ask for assistance, and a few minutes later we provided them with the information in a spreadsheet. To our surprise, they called us back about an hour later ‘beaming with delight’ stating: “Thank you, the Fire Investigator left”. How can one put a dollar value on such occurrences?
Improve management reporting, forecasts and trends analysis:
Many organizations require their safety teams to produce periodic management summaries regarding their inspections and deficiencies, usually accompanied with graphs or charts. When we first became involved with automating inspections in 1999, we were amazed by how much time it took managers to compile such reports. Properly implemented electronic inspection software can produce such reports periodically or upon request, allowing managers to focus on the content of the reports instead of on the process of compiling them.
Supports BYOD/CYOB/COPE implementations (Bring/Choose Your Own Device, Company-issued, Personally-Enabled):
Automating inspections usually includes a number of tools that enable electronic data collection, such as iPads, Tablets or mobile phones. Supporting industry-standard devices and allowing customers to use their own devices can significantly reduce the overall implementation costs of such inspection management system.