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Remote control with Oculus

07 July 2011

Oculus is a managed service offering complete paperless job management, reporting and document control. It has been specifically developed for companies with remote teams who undertake planned or reactive projects.

Managed services and software development company Sedcom has joined forces with building maintenance and project management firm Close Brothers to launch Oculus, a new managed service for facilities managers and maintenance teams.

Oculus offers complete paperless job management, reporting and document control. It has been specifically developed for companies with remote teams who undertake planned or reactive projects. It is equally at home managing projects such as repairs on London Underground as it is directing compliance for complex asbestos removal operations.

Sedcom originally developed the service as a bespoke system for Close Brothers. It has been tried, tested and refined and has proved so effective that the two companies have decided to launch the service to the general market.

How Oculus works

On-site teams are each provided with an Oculus Tablet which links into the cloud-based Oculus Hub for directions, monitoring and support.  Smart Communications links everything together, allowing on-line and off-line working, with rapid communications between management and on-site staff.   

The Oculus Tablet lets team members receive jobs and job information from dispatch at a press of a button.  Here are just some of the many tasks that the system enables team members to do:

- Sign on to jobs

- Present licenses and permits to work

- Check method statements

- View job or client-specific information

- Complete Health & Safety check-lists

- Query stock levels

- Order materials

- Report on site incidents

- Flag plant for replacement

- Transmit photo or video evidence

Then when the job is complete, an electronic signature from the client immediately notifies all parties of completion.  The Oculus Hub receives updates about plant, materials and labour-hours spent on site, and produces the invoice ready for checking and submission.

Oculus manages information about clients, jobs and teams, as well as Health & Safety check-lists, permits-to-work and all documentation and forms needed for efficient management, monitoring and reporting of jobs. The Oculus team has recently added a new estimating tool to the service.

Staff, management and clients can sign-on to the secure, branded portal provided by the Oculus Hub.  Here they access the information and reports they need, tailored to their role.  Managers can define exactly what levels and type of access are given to different users, and the system can be used from a web browser or smart phone.

‘Online-only’ systems have a drawback – if they lose signal, they stop working. Oculus is different as the Oculus Tablet receives new and updated information and saves it, simultaneously sending any updates back to the Oculus Hub.  This means that a team leader or engineer can sign on to a job using a 3G, WI-FI or wired network, and the tablet receives all relevant new and updated information.  The job can then progress with the tablet in off-line mode, with all information available to personnel on-site.

Updates and change in job status are transmitted back to the Oculus Hub at the touch of a button, from wherever there is a connection, so everyone is up-to-date.

A ‘compliance friendly’ system

Oculus is also a ‘compliance friendly’ system.  It manages and stores forms, check-lists, assessments, data sheets and evidence required by legislation, quality accreditation and client specific requirements.  It does this without dramatically increasing the workload for quality and compliance managers or the front-line teams.  Auditors and assessors can easily access all the information they need without delay and disruption.

Organisations running Oculus have an integrated Quality Management System (QMS) that helps keep them in compliance without huge extra workload.  It is already helping a number of teams to undertake highly regulated activities involving removal and transport of asbestos, and is helping companies remain compliant with BS EN ISO 9001, ISO 14000 and H&S OHSAS 18001.

For further information please contact Angela Beevers:
tel: 07905 673 053.

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