Smart mobile phones are increasingly being used as a mobile mini computer to replace paper based processes in the field across several industries.
Paper based inspection reporting is no longer efficient in a highly mobile world. Paper reports create a fresh loop of work because they need to be entered again into the office database, effectively doubling the work of recording the results and stretching the reporting and corrective actions timeline.
Smart mobile phones have the ability to replace this paper-intensive process by supporting software that can ensure the paperless inspection process is not stopped or affected in anyway if the operator loses web connectivity anytime during the inspection.
The paperless inspection software has the ability to ‘store and forward’ the inspection results. In the event the inspector or field technician is working in an area without internet coverage, the data collection and inspection activities will not be compromised or disturbed.
Once the smart phone re-establishes an internet connection via 3G, LTE, or Wi-Fi, the data can be sent back immediately to the database in the office (or the cloud), available to review by any stakeholder such as supervisors, accounts personnel, clients or sub-contractors over a web portal. The data is seamlessly available over the web for further action.
Given the number of paperless inspection software options on the market, how does one choose the right solution?
An important factor to consider would be whether the solution has a ‘backend’ database.
A number of programs are simply ‘form fillers’ whereby a static form is completed and sent to a client. Having a database back up the paperless field software allows users to archive all inspections done, interrogate the database by building specific queries, and set up automatic email reminders of upcoming inspections or automatic emails of corrective steps undertaken among many other actions.
It is important to consider the broader benefits of a fully operational paperless software package, and not just the cost alone. Most full service software users can recover the cost within 6-9 months.
To conclude, companies seeking sophisticated computing power to use field mobility software need not look beyond the mobile device in their pocket.
Techs4Biz Australia offers Pervidi products, which combine service management, asset management, maintenance management and inspection management functionalities to improve operational efficiencies and reduce costs.