A new web-based software called MetaField by Agile Frameworks is streamlining Eustis Engineering Services, L.L.C.’s construction materials testing process. Eustis Engineering began using the software in September, and it has enhanced the effectiveness of the company’s onsite inspection process.
“Contractors and construction managers are able to make timely decisions and notifications that keep the project on track,” Eustis Engineering President Bill Gwyn said. “This software is very cost effective to the project in the long run.”
Technicians in the field enter data into the software, using either a smartphone or cellular network enabled tablet to upload up to the minute test data into the system. Project Managers and supervisors are then able to check the field tests and track reports. Our staff then compiles the lab and field data electronically, before the software merges the test and project specific data with standardized forms to create reports that are reviewable by quality control personnel throughout our organization. The software is web-based and data flow is completely electronic. This works well in our mobile business environment and eliminates tedious administrative tasks.
Senior Project Manager / Vice President of Testing Travis Richards, P.E., and other engineers digitally sign and stamp the reports, which are automatically emailed as links to clients and others on each project’s distribution list.
Travis is excited that the software brings “industry-leading technology to our construction material testing and inspection project stakeholders.” He says the paperless database eliminates double entry and leverages experienced staff to review results from any location.
“We have 150 pages of field technician logs daily,” said Angi Adcock, the administrative assistant in the Lake Charles office. “Keeping track of all that was really complicated. This makes it so much easier.”
Operations Administrative Assistant Colleen Percle says the faster reporting turnover is a huge benefit to the company, along with centralized reporting and quality assurance. Field technicians now have project specifications applied to testing results in the field instantaneously to alert them of non-compliant materials. The software has cut the company’s report turnaround from four days to less than 48 hours on most testing.
“My favorite feature is that it tracks everything for you,” Angi said. “You don’t have to wonder, ‘how many reports have been finalized by engineers today?’ ‘How many reports have I done today?’ It helps me organize and plan my day better.”
As far as quality assurance, the software requires the user to enter all pertinent information before moving further along in the software, working as a check on the back end.
Eustis Engineering is implementing the software in all offices: Metairie, Baton Rouge, Lake Charles, Gulfport, and Lafayette, with all offices up and running by 1 January, 2016.
Agile Frameworks is owned by Braun Intertec, a geotechnical engineering, environmental consulting, and testing firm.