Construction Safety & OSHA Incident Report Software Applications.
Is your firm still using paper forms and Excel to manage your safety program?
An Example Safety Stats Software App
American Electric Power (AEP) is one of the largest electric utility companies in the US, serving over five million customers in 11 states and employing over 18,500 people.
In 2008, AEP initiated an effort to replace their traditional safety statistics workflow with a custom software solution. A software company in Canada spent close to two years building a system that ultimately was never deployed or used because of ongoing problems and its inability to fulfill its required tasks. In 2011, Terraine was hired by AEP to build what the Canadian firm was unable to successfully deliver.
Previous Safety Stats Workflow
Up until the beginning of 2012, AEP?s main data collection workflow for construction safety statistics was similar to many organizations: they used Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word, and email. Various Excel spreadsheets (each with multiple worksheets) were used to compile contractor craft count and manhour data into appropriate tables, charts, and graphs. Additional data, including incident and recordables information, was captured in a Word document as raw text. Each week, plant manager assistants would input contractor craft count and manhour data for each contractor working at the plant into various Excel files.
A Logistical Nightmare…
If someone was injured on site, a Word template would be filled out, and an investigation would be initiated. Once the Excel spreadsheets were completed, each plant manager (AEP currently has 59 power plants) would then email their completed spreadsheets to an admin assistant in Columbus Ohio, for transposing into similarly-formatted ?master? spreadsheets. This admin assistant would copy and paste cell values from dozens of plant-level spreadsheets into her ?master? spreadsheets. Cell ranges would be updated to reflect the new data, columns would be hidden as necessary, and formulas would be updated for each worksheet and spreadsheet. Typically, these mundane and rote tasks would consume over half of the admin?s available time.
Developing a Better Safety Tracking Workflow
An evaluation was performed on the current workflow being used for safety statistics data capture and reporting. This included a site visit, personnel interviews both on site and over the phone, and detailed analysis of all spreadsheets provided to Terraine. Mockups and wireframes were sketched out in detail and presented over several GotoMeeting web sessions. These were revised as per the discussions and feedback, presented over GotoMeeting again, and eventually, after a few iterations spanning approximately one month, the Terraine team went to work building the system laid out in the mockups and design documents.
After 4 months of development, bug fixes, feature enhancements, pre-population of the system with historical data, and additional feedback, the Safety Statistics database went live in a production environment on hosted servers. Personnel were trained in the workflow of the new system, and a user guide was prepared.
Custom Safety Tracking Software System
Data is entered, edited, and deleted from any browser. User permissions are handled at the user group level and can be changed in real-time by the application admin, meaning that the data presented and available permissions for each user and user group (read/write/modify/delete) are fully controllable.
The Workflow for the System:
- User logs in using any browser (IE, Chrome, FF, Safari) and enters craft count and manhour data for a particular week and plant/project/unit combination.
- The Safety Admin Assistant clicks on the QA/Review tab, and proceeds to review/edit/modify/delete/approve new records.
- System then incorporates approved records into the database for OSHA incident rate statistics calculations and report generation.
- When needed, anyone with appropriate user permissions can click on the reports tab and fire off one of many reports, with appropriate cell formatting and formulas/charts.
- If desired, system will also fire off reports automatically via email.
- The Application Manager can add new users, delete old users, and update valid value lists that populate dropdown menus throughout the system.
The Impact of an Improved Workflow
A savings of at least 2 full time equivalents (FTEs) every single year, for at least 10 years?with a resulting ROI of 10X. The application has resulted in a payroll reduction of at least two full-time equivalents. Over the lifetime of this application?which is estimated to be at least 10 years?the end result is a huge savings of real money while simultaneously improving the completeness, quality, and near real-time availability of the data collected.
Get the contractors to enter their own data (instead of your people doing it for them).
When you use an Excel-based system, contractors send you craft count and manhour data. And then someone at your firm still has to spend time entering and merging that data into the appropriate Excel sheets. So instead of spending a lot of payroll money on your own employees to do this, get your contractors to do this themselves. This is possible because of the systems?s rich user permissions controls, enabling a contractor credential to only have access to areas and data that pertains to their firm.
Crank out whatever kind of report you want, in the same format that you are already used to.
Need reports in a particular format, with certain fields highlighted in yellow background color, or multiple worksheets with specific headers? Or a PDF report? No problem. Just specify what you need in terms of reporting, and it can be done.
With a few clicks, decision-makers can quickly view pie charts, column charts and more for any combination of date range, plant, contractor, or craft. Patterns can be quickly identified and isolated so that management can dive deeper into the data, and identify possible causes, behaviors, and lessons learned. In addition, contractors identified by the system as those with elevated safety stats can be quickly rooted out and eliminated/replaced.
Looking to digitize your field safety forms?
We are experts at converting paper-based safety forms into digital workflows. Especially complex ones. If you?d like to discuss your specific needs, please fill out the form below and someone will be in touch with you to schedule a demo and initial discussion about your specific requirements.
Turn your safety forms into an app. So that instead of filling out paper forms with a pen and clipboard, use an iPad or Android tablet instead. Benefits from converting your form to a digital version include the following:
- Improve your data quality and completeness via validation controls not available on static paper
- Improve your workflow by automating the form approval and signature process
- Signature data includes geolocation and date/time stamps?also not available on paper
- Attach other types of data to your form, including photos, drawings, etc
- Easily search, retrieve, and display historical and archived data