Workplace safety can be ensured through diligent inspections and routine
maintenance. An OSHA report in 2014 cited fall protection as the most frequently
violated safety standard and the leading cause of worker fatality, accounting
for over 36% of deaths in construction in the USA.
Instead of conventional paper-based inspection processes, companies can
implement a digital or electronic inspection workflow to ensure safety
compliance and mitigate the problem of workplace injury.
Several shortcomings exist in paper-based inspection models or practices.
For instance, paper forms and reports are easily lost, damaged or otherwise
compromised, rendering each inspection inadequate or unavailable against the
next. Report comparisons and maintenance histories, considered the basics of
the inspection process, require inspection reports to be meticulously documented
and filed. Failure to do so would result in unfinished tasks, lack of
ownership, and unreported deficiencies contributing to safety violations and
failure to manage hazards in the workplace. Inspection reports maintained using
basic spreadsheet software, are similarly ineffective as a result of deficient
or missing workflow, notifications, follow-up and planning.
An electronic safety inspection solution is easy to use and versatile in
function, completely eliminating the need for a paper-based system. Being highly
customisable, the paperless solution can be implemented across diverse industries
to manage any type of inspection requirement. Industrial sectors currently
using electronic inspection solutions include oil and gas, mining, safety,
property management, transportation, healthcare, education, service providers, and
government agencies. The paperless inspection software is a comprehensive
solution for any field work activity, including but not limited to safety and
compliance inspections, audits, work orders, quality assurance, and surveys.
Electronic inspection solutions not only promote competent workflow, but
are designed to ensure periodic inspections are not overlooked thanks to the
integrated trigger engines. Automated email reminders and notifications improve
productivity by ensuring that inspection objectives and goals are always met as
scheduled. These alerts not only remind users of upcoming tasks, but can be
customised to escalate overdue or incomplete tasks to responsible parties in a
timely manner. Features such as corrective action ensure that the information
needed to rectify a deficiency, hazard or failed inspection is easily accessible
at all times and proactively sent to the responsible stakeholders.
Unlike the cumbersome effort required for paper-based inspection and
data collection processes in the field, mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets
featuring cameras, barcodes, and/or RFID scanners facilitate accurate
identification of inspection targets, ensuring findings, results,
recommendations, notes and any other related media are consistently attributed to
the correct entry every time.
Key benefits of electronic inspection solutions also include lightweight
mobile devices pre-programmed with customised electronic checklists simplifying
operation; integral use of mobile device features such as camera, barcode
scanning, Near Field Communication for accommodation of RFID tags,
speech-to-text translation, and automatic capture of date/time/GPS; and ability
to record results and transmit or store data electronically.
Electronic or paperless inspection solutions are further enhanced via
the use of web portals, which can be accessed from any web browser including
mobile browsers. The web portal’s features include system administration, asset
and facility management, report generation, automatic notifications and metrics,
data-exporting/importing and the ability to customise automatic alerts and
One of Australia’s largest banana farms switched to a paperless
inspection solution from a paper-based system to manage equipment maintenance
and site safety. The previous paper-based system was found to be inefficient
and costly on the 1000-acre farm in North Queensland. Implementation of a
paperless inspection solution facilitated better asset management and
transferred inspections to handheld devices for improved ease-of-use on the
farm. All field work in the farm is currently completed by employees using
predefined, customised checklists on mobile devices to promote efficiency,
particularly when a new inspection or work order is executed.
Electronic or paperless inspection solutions are estimated to save 30-40%
of the total time required to execute a paper-based inspection. Benefits also
include higher efficiency by providing highly organised records and improving
employee accountability and personal ownership; facilitating trend charting and
forecasts by maintaining easy access to work histories; ability to
independently produce logs, certificates and alerts; and helping keep workplaces
safer and companies compliant with industry safety standards, while reducing
the risk of OH&S violations and workplace accidents.
Techs4Biz Australia offers Pervidi products, which combine service
management, asset management, maintenance management and inspection management
functionalities to improve operational efficiencies and reduce costs.