Aegex has so many amazing partners and customers, so we have asked them to detail their technologies or share their experiences with Aegex in the form of guest blogs.
Our first guest blog is from TAAP, an application partner. TAAP transforms paper forms into digital forms that Aegex customers can have their field crew access on the Aegex10 Intrinsically Safe Tablet while working in hazardous locations, such as oil & gas operations, chemical plants or other environments with potentially explosive atmospheres.
Read further to learn how using TAAP’s services on Aegex tablets can benefit your hazardous operations.
By Angela Walker, Forms Evangelist for TAAP
Intro to TAAP: TAAP’s technology allows clients and partners to build and use digital forms based on their existing processes, using digital devices such as tablets and smartphones. Rather than relying on paper forms for inspections, maintenance repairs, regulatory checklists, or other processes, clients can use TAAP to transform all paper forms to digital, thereby making those processes more efficient. Or if no paper forms currently exist for a process, TAAP can help create an appropriate digital form to suit specific needs.
We often find that many organisations start to investigate ‘going digital’ by having a need to transition from paper-based forms to a digital app because of inefficiencies within their business or changes which they’d like to implement to improve effectiveness. As they go through the process of providing one of their existing forms to TAAP and having an initial demo of an application built (typically digitised by our team in 1-2 days), they begin to analyse their process quite closely and question how it can be improved. They start to realise that when the process is digitised they are now able to capture more business-critical information than is currently possible to do.
For example, during routine maintenance there is often a paper form involved, which the employee uses to check that the same jobs are completed at daily or weekly intervals, sometimes with various employees completing different parts of the same form. Sometimes an employee may leave important sections out, and in some cases he or she has indecipherable handwriting.
TAAP has vast experience in digitising maintenance forms and can provide straightforward features that are built-in, such as time-stamping the time and date a task is completed, or capturing the signature of the person undertaking the task, plus capturing associated photos and annotation to provide visual evidence, and generating all these as part of a report which is emailed to recipients once the job is complete.
Setting validation within the application allows for certain fields to be mandatory and to only be completed using specific types of information (i.e., numeric or being a certain length). This validation can also be used to make sure a process is completed in a certain order or to send an email notification if something hasn’t happened that should.
Other forms such as asset and inventory tracking also benefit from TAAP digitisation because of built-in controls, such as damage checks, signatures, photos/diagrams, and RFID tracking. Any client can manage asset tracking and inventory using digital apps as they are especially suited to mobile devices, which can be used to enter details of an asset and its condition (both using a written description and by taking photographs and adding annotation). Doing this means that maintenance and repairs are more easily managed.
It’s also easy to see who has checked the asset, when, and what types of issues may arise. In fact, collating this type of data and using it for business effectiveness is something that TAAP is passionate about. Data collected from TAAP’s apps can be interrogated by using visual dashboards available in products such as Microsoft Power BI, where graphs and charts can be built quickly and easily to display trends over a period of time (i.e., consistent machinery failures or vehicles that may need frequent repairs for the same recurring problem).
Other processes also benefit from TAAP’s technology, such as inspections and audits, and these are often critical because of the role they play within a health & safety framework and how they enable businesses and organisations to comply with legislation.
Many of TAAP’s current clients and partners have inspections to undertake – some of these on a daily or more frequent basis – and they form part of the business’s day-to-day operations, so they are extremely important in terms of capturing accurate, timely, and verified data. Inspections such as those related to vehicles, equipment, or food-preparation are common, and audits on premises where customers are visiting such as those in the leisure & hospitality industries or in showrooms have become more and more popular in recent times as those organisations strive to maintain and raise standards.
These types of digital forms also provide managers, senior operations personnel, HR Directors, and anyone involved in the ‘people’ side of things to manage performance more easily, as they can see which tasks have been completed once the ‘job’ has been signed for and sent from a device to a web portal, for example. This means that KPIs, rewards, monitoring and so on are enhanced because the data being received from ‘in the field’ is near real-time. As such, employee management can be done more efficiently using up-to-date information on workloads and successes instead of having to trawl through records from weeks or months prior in order to see if employees are doing as expected, falling below par, or exceeding expectations.
Planning to ‘go digital’? There are so many advantages and processes that could benefit that it’s important to start with a process you are familiar with. Try to envisage the sort of data you could act on from seeing those everyday tasks being completed by your workforce, and imagine how receiving uniform, consistent data from appropriate hardware combined with tailored software is going to benefit your organisation to work smarter and gain insights into everyday business tasks and outcomes more quickly. Once you’ve got those aims in place and know what you’re looking to improve upon and achieve, contact us or send us a form, and we can start to assist you in becoming more efficient.