We’ve done a lot of EEHA inspections over the years, with and without Ex-Online, so we’d like to think we’ve learned a thing or two about what makes them effective. Inspections require significant investment of time and effort, so maximising the value that we get from them makes sense.
So what do we mean by “effective inspections?”
- Effective inspections are completed efficiently, with minimal follow-up work required after the inspector leaves the field
- Effective inspections identify genuine defects, without generating “noise” – spurious issues that clutter defect lists and distract from the real problems
And the key to achieving them? Data.
To be effective, inspectors need to have access to data to support the inspection. The data required depends on the type of inspection.
In the case of initial inspections (carried out at detailed grade), we need the complete set of documents associated with a piece of equipment for the inspection to be effective:
- Certificates of Conformity
- HA Classification details
- Electrical test results
- Calculations; and other compliance documents.
For periodic inspections we’re not re-checking all of the initial inspection items, so the most useful data is historical – records of previous inspections and photos to allow the inspector to identify and track changes in the condition of the installation over time.
Without the right data available, inspectors are less able to be sure if equipment is compliant or not, or if it has deteriorated since the last inspection, which leads to more “potential” defects being raised, more noise, and more follow-up work after the inspection is complete.
Sharing of inspection data during a campaign also improves effectiveness. Sometimes compliance isn’t as black and white as we’d like it to be, and inspectors may differ in their interpretations. Having visibility on compliance issues as they are raised (rather than at the end of the campaign, following a bunch of tedious data entry work) can help reduce variability between inspectors and drive consistency in the identification of defects, and in the recommendations for fixing them.
It is possible to conduct effective inspections on paper, but it’s hard work. A paperless solution makes it much easier maximise the value of your inspection investment.
Ex-Online’s ability to generate workpacks with exactly the right information for each type inspection at the click of a button is pretty nice. Having visibility of defects and equipment photos during a campaign without the tedious data entry is pretty nice too. We can’t see ourselves going back to paper any time soon.
Give us a call if you’d like to see how Ex-Online can help make your inspections effective as well.