Category Archives: Summer 2015

Four steps for effective business process improvement

The demand to simplify both informal and formal business processes continues to increase as expectations change, new technologies emerge and competition grows can be addressed by following these four steps:
1) Identify the need for change by reviewing current issues or potential risks which should consider how each process impacts your organisation, resources and stakeholders (employees, customers, partners, suppliers, etc.).
2) Once you have decided which process you are going to improve you can analyse the current procedure to set realistic improvement objectives by answering the following questions:
• What in the process is broken?
• Which steps in the process create roadblocks?
• Which step requires the most time to complete?
• Which step causes the most delays?
• Are there any steps that cause costs/resources to go up?
• Are there any steps that cause quality to go down?
3) It is crucial that management understands the need for change to ensure they will support recommendations.
4) Create an Improvement Strategy that includes what steps in the process are broken, why and how they should be improved and any financial and resource implications.

If you are looking to gain operational efficiency, standardise data capture and business processes, increase visibility of information and business operations or enable collaboration amongst internal and external teams contact us today to discover how the X-Info products can simplify your day to day activities.

What’s new in GIS?

Increasing numbers of mobile devices and access to data mean that more and more people are using GIS on a daily basis.

MOBILE: Users are now familiar with Google Maps, searching online for static locations, hotels, shops, restaurants and dynamic locations, the nearest taxi, traffic incidents, fire alerts and radar storm path models/animations. There are user expectations for spatial solutions and GIS is just a tool running in the background making the magic happen.

The ‘CLOUD’ has also changed how we store spatial data and the tools we use to analyse it. Esri have tackled the “Cloud” aspect with ArcGIS Pro (software as a service) and ArcGIS Earth which will replace Google Earth Enterprise (scheduled release “later this year”). GIS\IT Managers need to understand different cloud offerings and terminology as it gains popularity:
• IaaS: Infrastructure as a Service, for example, Amazon, Rackspace or Macquarie Telecom. You acquire virtual machines to run your applications
• PaaS: Platform as a Service, for example, Esri ArcGIS.com. This is where you utilise a platform for sharing data, setting up web services
• SaaS: Software as a Service, for example, Xero where you use a payroll system and pay by the month, or for what you use.

DATA: The GIS Industry is expected to grow to a worldwide US$10.6 Billion by 2015. The largest demand is for GIS data, which has grown at a compound annual rate of 15.5% for the last eight years. Hitachi describe growing data volume trends from 300MB/km2 in the early 90’s, 25 GB/km2 in 2006 and PBs/km2 today. Sensors now capture full 3D data at rates of 8-20GB’s second!

Pitney-Bowes (PB) have responded to the need for interrogating large raster datasets introducing an innovative grid format called Multi-Resolution Raster (MRR).( MapInfo Pro 15.2 Available early November, 2015).

Accenture ‘2015 Oil and Gas Digital and Technology Trends Survey’ recently reported that mobility, infrastructure and collaboration technologies represent the biggest investment areas across the oil and gas industry, whilst Five of Gartner’s ‘Top 10 Technology Trends Impacting the Upstream Oil and Gas Industry’ (2015) relate to cloud, data & mobile solutions.

In conclusion GIS has moved beyond the ‘where’. Priority has shifted to ‘when’ and ‘how’. 4D GIS (XYZ and time) is the next major step. Add predictive modelling to the mix and proposed management actions (for example, timber harvesting and subsequent vegetation growth) can be introduced to look into the future. Tomorrow’s data structures will accommodate time as a stored dimension and completely change the conventional mapping paradigm. (A dynamic datum GDA2020 with time vectors, will be implemented by the ICSM
in Australia by 2023).

Field Data Conversation Efficiency

Murray & Associates (Qld) Pty Ltd is a team of professional Land and Engineering Surveyors and Town Planners. They demonstrate integrity and professional commitment to Queensland service provision and were established in 1946.

Working on the Origin Gas Pipeline Project, Murray were collecting data in the field but needed to transfer that data in accordance with the Origin Field Data Collection Dictionary. After consulting with Mipela GeoSolutions, a three stage approach was agreed to conduct a Feasibility Study, Develop a Model then Operationalising that Model. The model processed the source shapefiles and converted them into feature classes in a file geodatabase as provided by Origin.

The feature mapping file defined which shapefiles were to be transferred to the corresponding feature classes. It was configured for one to one mapping, many to one mapping, or one to many mapping. In addition to the feature mapping file, there was an attribute mapping file for every shapefile/feature class relationship.

Murray & Associates director, Andrew Campbell said, “Murray & Associates has been really happy with the communication and clear strategy presented by Mipela from the outset of this project. Mipela are a very professional company and we look forward to working with Mipela in the future.”

In a nutshell, Murray’s were satisfied because their business process was enhanced and they were able to turnaround work for their clients quickly. Their client, Origin was also satisfied, for getting their data sooner and in a suitable format.

For more information, please contact Dirk Craigie.

Mandatory fields: Controlling Data Entry

Q1: What are mandatory fields?

A1: The mandatory setting can be applied to any new or existing field in X-Info Connect. End users cannot submit a record unless these fields are populated.

Q2: What field types can be made mandatory?

A2: The mandatory setting can be applied to any object and any field in X-Info Connect. This includes entity, contact or communication objects as well as text, checkbox, picklist list, object lists and more.

Q3: How do I apply a mandatory field?

A3: A system administrator can access the connection settings, select the relevant field and update the “Accessibility” from the default editable value to mandatory. Yes, it’s that simple.

Q4: What do my end users see when a field is mandatory?

A4: When a user creates a new record (eg. communication) the mandatory fields will display in red text. If the user tries to submit or select off the record without populating these fields a dialog box pops up advising which data needs to be entered. If users select “Yes” they navigate back to the record to complete the data entry. If users select “No” the record is removed.

If you would like further information or assistance, please contact the MG Support Team at support@mipela.com.au or phone 1300 857 870.