Technology is making field reporting and inspections more efficient and accurate with greater data intelligence. Inspection technologies can streamline manual processes, allow for the gathering of more accurate data, and generate reports faster so that management can make quicker actionable decisions. Inspection technologies keep assets running because with the data collected it is possible to move towards a predictive maintenance model which will minimize downtime and increase asset ROI. Furthermore, inspection technologies increase safety because they are more thorough and actionable.
If your inspectors are heading out to the field with paper, pen, and clipboard, you need to consider adopting these 4 technologies:
- 1. Mobile DevicesMobile devices such as smartphones, tablets, and laptops are replacing clipboards in the field. Entering data into a mobile form offers several advantages to handwritten ones:
- Ensure accuracy – Paper inspection forms are often compiled over time and so become disjointed and without a logical sequence to how an inspection should progress. Inspections performed on a mobile device allows inspectors to follow a sequence and ensures all answers are complete. Incomplete answers are highlighted and the inspection cannot be submitted until all questions are completely answered.
- Legibility -Whether or not the inspectors hand writing is legible is no longer an issue, which makes inspections more accurate
- Speed – performing inspections on a mobile device frees your inspectors from the shackles of paper-based inspections. Now, instead of printing forms, driving back to the main office, and reentering data, technicians can simply pull up a standard form on their mobile device, perform an inspection, and sync it with the back office for instant accessibility across the company.
- 2. Media CaptureCapturing photos and videos while in the field adds value to an inspection by ensuring a higher level of detail and accuracy that pen and paper inspections cannot accomplish. Management can review the media captured to determine the level of damage or non-compliance and how soon actions need to take place. If an inspector is using a mobile device with a built in camera, the images can be attached to the pertinent section of the inspection by the software solution.
- 3. Barcode ScanningBarcode scanning adds a lot of accuracy to an inspection. Scanning an item versus writing in a barcode number is quicker and eliminates the chance of a transcription error. Barcode scanning plays an important role in equipment asset management.
- 4. Reporting & Analytics SoftwareGone are the days of manually entering inspection data into excel spreadsheets – and if those days are not gone for you, they can be! Data captured with a digital device can be synchronized back to head office where reports can be generated with a click of a button. Specifically, Punch List software is advantageous because it helps maintenance efforts by detailing what each deficiency is, identifying what is non-compliant, and providing action tasks to help maintenance find and fix the deficiencies.
Field inspection technologies exist to increase operational efficiency. If you’re not moving towards a more efficient operation, you’re not staying competitive. Adopting these technologies will move your organization in the right direction for growth.