How connected workers reshape work inspections

Digital transformation is impacting industries worldwide as data collection and exchange are creating new and valuable opportunities. Zoom into this article for more in-depth information.

IoT is shifting work inspections to the online channel, providing businesses with new products and management options. 

With high encouragement from governments and other regulatory bodies to switch to smarter and greener solutions, businesses have no other option than to go digital if they seek to thrive on the current challenges. Those businesses that have already stepped into their digital transformation are opening new digital opportunities across their entire business landscape. 

Because of many operational and collaboration disconnections among field workers, accelerating the workforce's digital transformation has become a major responsibility for businesses. Due to an aging workforce, job fluctuations, and increased job expectations, worldwide industries are working towards a more digitally connected workforce to help workers achieve higher quality, productivity, and job satisfaction.

Connected workers solve organizational knowledge loss.

Osterman Research showed that 69% of the polled organizations confirmed they suffered significant data or knowledge loss resulting from employees who took information resources with them when they left the company. Is this still happening in the age of cloud storage? 

Retirement is increasing as older generations have reached the employment age. According to Harvard Business Review, one next anticipated wave of almost 700 retirements would mean losing over 27,000 years of experience. How many companies can say they have meticulously planned the knowledge transfer between the retired employees and their successors? 

How can you make sure the knowledge is transferred through the company once an employee retires or moves on to another company? Relevant data from previous inspections or similar ones gets lost forever once employees no longer work in the company. 

Do you struggle with this disconnection between field workers and the rest of the organization? How many departments are impacted by a lack of communication and slow collaboration? 

Unfortunately, situations in which data is not transferred from operator to operator in time are still happening, and decision-making is slowed down due to poor data storage. 

The book, Critical Knowledge Transfer published in 2014, stated that business leaders often find out what data losses occurred months after employees had retired. Imagine how many inspections you need to repeat because of this slow-pace of recovering all data. What about the extra costs added to the new employees' tangible costs of recruitment and training? You could easily avoid and control these situations in a collaborative work environment. 

How do connected workers solve knowledge loss and efficiency?

  • Working with inspections systems that respond to their actions in real-time
  • Using mobile-accessible apps that work online and offline, reducing dependencies
  • Having real-time visibility into key-essential indicators 
  • Storing all data correctly to meet the demands of both the organisation and the government
  • Adding, collecting extra information, or modifying information in real-time while instantly notifying the other parties involved

Benefits of a connected & collaborative work environment 

Adjusting to a more agile work environment comes as a necessity as present-day employees like millennials or even younger generations are used to and expect a friendlier user experience, appified systems, and accessible tools that boost their productivity and shortens the time spent on repetitive tasks.

banner with text and two oil and gas operators next to a oil terminal

Companies that aim for connected workers and an agile environment will likely see:

  • Less human error 
  • Improved productivity 
  • Increased uptime
  • Fewer costs 
  • Assured safety & compliance
  • Real-time assets monitoring at any time from anywhere
  • Quick decision making 
  • Enhanced reliability 
  • Linear collaboration 

Download whitepaper: Spreadsheet-based inspections

The oil and gas, chemical production, construction, mining, and metals industries have quickly embraced these new enabling technologies like cloud & edge computing, smart sensors, and IoT devices. 

With a clear dashboard, clean reports, and properly integrated data, business leaders have experienced this collaborative work processes' liberty and agility. Remote work is no longer a benefit, but it's an obligation that makes accessing a platform remotely a business-changing benefit in the current pandemic situation. 

Cloud-based tools allow workers to communicate with each other in real-time and use shared data more efficiently. 

Smart sensors replace manual preventive checks, help operators determine whether the equipment needs manual maintenance without any back and forth extra work. These sensors can even take over some tasks currently carried by workers saving them a considerable amount of time. 

Smart solutions for connected businesses 

Technology is bringing all departments together, from maintenance to operations and management. Once operations and maintenance employees have joint access to work orders and activity planning, both departments save considerable unnecessary work. Receiving instant notifications with new tasks or requirements and having a clear overview of the role distribution connected workers rapidly and efficiently enhance their productivity. 

Work barriers are eliminated once maintenance and management start working collaboratively with remote access to documentation and the possibility to offer help remotely.

Final thoughts. Are you aware of how much time are your workers spending looking for information?

Are you aware of how much time are your workers spending looking for information? 

McKinsey report showed that employees spend 1.8 hours every day—9.3 hours per week, on average—searching and gathering information. Put another way, businesses hire five employees, but only four show up to work; the fifth is off searching for answers but not contributing any value.

IDC data shows that "the knowledge worker spends about 2.5 hours per day, or roughly 30% of the workday, searching for information….60% [of company executives] felt that time constraints and lack of understanding of how to find information were preventing their employees from finding the information they needed.

Making better and faster business decisions supported by real-time data access, business leaders can focus on creating new growth strategies. Once you have increased your tool time, you automatically increase the workers' productivity. 

And how much time & money would you save if you eliminate paper processes? 

Our value proposition

Smartflow is a platform that helps businesses accelerate the execution and compliance of Operations, Maintenance, and SHEQ workflows by offering a single solution for all mobile workflows. It enables field engineers to capture and visualize data smartly. Smartflow provides various field service-related business solutions that are easily accessible and, at the same time, scalable and adaptable to local preferences. It acts as a front-end of the EAM, where the EAM system remains the single source of truth.

Our mission is to help the industries thrive even in the most uncertain times. Mobile apps will help increase efficiency and logistics, ensure safety, and storage data correctly. With a solution that maximizes operations' productivity, business leaders can maximize other growth areas.

We help our customers accelerate the execution and the compliance of inspections, permits, and work orders, maintaining the highest security and quality while reducing operational risks, meeting compliance, and collecting real-time insight from the generated data.  

With our solution, we enable engineers, operators, and inspectors to leap into their digital transformation.

Back to top

Keep Connected

Subscribe to our newsflash.

Follow us


  • Veemarktkade 8, Office 4113

  • 5222 AE 's-Hertogenbosch
  • The Netherlands
  • This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Copyright © 2022 Smartflow Nederland BV