Increased Customer Service With RFID
With depots across the England, Northern Ireland and Eire, WH Scott & Son is a leading provider of lifting equipment and the services needed to maintain lifting operations and to operate lifting equipment safely. When one of their major clients identified problems with safety inspections, WH Scott were only too happy to work with them to come up with a solution that allowed staff to be confident about which equipment was safe for use.
The result was a new system for identifying lifting equipment and for recording equipment inspections. To introduce their new system, WH Scott chose the CoreRFID CheckedOK solution.
Results of the implementation of the initial system have encouraged WH Scott to extend the application to other clients and now over 3000 items of lifting equipment have been tagged for checking in the system.
120 Years Of Experience
From its origins almost 120 years ago, W H Scott has grown to become a major player in the supply and servicing of lifting equipment and load securing systems. Based in County Antrim, Northern Ireland the company points to the fact that it supplied the lifting equipment used by Harland & Wolf to build the Titanic as part of its long heritage.
Today, though, WH Scott has branches in Belfast, Wexford, Dublin and Plymouth and offers a full range of lifting equipment and related services. The company specialises in systems for heavy lifting and, as a result, has clients in transportation, civil engineering, power generation and the off-shore oil and gas industry.
The introduction of CheckedOK came about as a result of one of their major clients identifying a problem with their own safety operations. Although equipment was being inspected correctly by W H Scott’s, their client’s staff were not always confident about when items had been inspected and which items staff were qualified to work with. Worse still, the client’s staff hadn’t been able to demonstrate to Health & Safety Executive staff that equipment was actually safe to operate.
The solution was for WH Scott to introduce the CheckedOK inspection and reporting system which allowed their client’s shop floor staff to get immediate, up-to-date, notification of equipment safety status. It also provided WH Scott engineers with an easier way of recording the results of inspections.
When items are inspected by WH Scott engineers the details are recorded at the time and then transmitted to the CheckedOK database. This database can be used by both WH Scott and their customers. They can inquire on the status of equipment and keep track of which systems need to be checked and when. The interactive features of CheckedOK have allowed it to become one of the most widely used inspection systems in the lifting industry. CoreRFID added a feature that allows WH Scott’s client’s staff to check equipment tags themselves. The solution was designed to be simple, giving staff a red light – stop / green light-go signal for any item they check.
The new system is more efficient for WH Scott’s inspecting engineers and provides better information for their customers.
“The new system gives our customers immediate feed-back on safety inspections. CheckedOK gives us an ideal platform for managing inspections and communicating inspection results.” – Patrick Doyle, Managing Director, WH Scott & Sons Ltd
Wide Ranging Safety Checks
The CheckedOK inspection and certification system used by WH Scott Lifting works with tags to identify equipment. These are linked to a database containing details of the appropriate inspection regime and the results of inspections.
This data can prompt engineers to carry out the correct checks for a certain piece of equipment and can save the results. These can then be used to deliver the appropriate safety certificates on-line to WH Scott staff and those of their customers. Because CheckedOK is widely used across a number of industries, many categories of standard inspection questionnaires are already included in the system. This was important for WH Scott because their clients operate in industries ranging from construction to manufacturing, utilities and off-shore.
CheckedOK can work with a range of tag types. In this case WH Scott opted for RFID tags and, in particular, tough but small cable-tie tags to identify equipment. RFID tags identify equipment electronically, avoiding errors. These tags can be quickly attached to a wide range of equipment, easily spotted by the inspecting engineer (because of their bright colours) and also have an ATEX explosion-proof rating, allowing them to be used in oil and gas installations.
First of all, staff can get immediate feedback on the safety status of a piece of equipment by simply scanning its tag with the CheckedOK application, this runs on a hand held PDA (in WH Scott’s case the M3 Mobile with integrated RFID reader) or Android device. The application’s red or green status display lets staff know at once if an item can be used safely.
Secondly staff can get up to date information on when equipment was last inspected, when its next inspection is due and what they need to do as a result of previous checks.
LOLER, PUWER & PSSR Checks
Finally, the system automatically generate inspection certificates in the format required by regulations. Certificates can be accessed on-line and delivered by email to specific contacts at the client. This feature allows the staff of WH Scott’s clients to demonstrate that inspection systems and individual equipment items are compliant with safety standards such as LOLER (Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations), PSSR (Pressurised Systems Safety Regulations), PUWER (Provision and Use of Work Equipment Regulations) and the LEEA’s (Lifting Equipment Engineers Association) own lifting-specific standards. For the UK reports & certificates comply with the requirements of the Lifting Operations and Lifting Equipment Regulations 1998 and for Ireland with SI. No. 299/2007 – Safety, Health and Welfare at Work (General Application) Regulations 2007.
Easily Accessible To Staff & Customers
Data compiled by CheckedOK is available to WH Scott’s clients on-line through a secure, internet-accessed, web portal. This allows WH Scott to deliver certificates and reports to customers without having to worry about the customer’s own IT infrastructure.
Data is hosted by CoreRFID on servers which take care of security, availability 24 x 7, and data back up.
The system helps RH Scott to carry out its inspection tasks more efficiently by speeding up inspections and improving the accuracy of data. It also allows them to offer a better service to their clients, especially by highlighting the corrective action needed after a piece of equipment fails its inspection..
As a consequence of all these benefits, the use of CheckedOK is now a key part of WH Scott’s sales proposition to their potential customers as well as an essential tool in delivering their services.
You can learn more about WH Scott on their web site.