The Digital Shift and the Health Crisis

The advent of the Covid-19 health crisis and its vast global impact on business has rendered many traditional working methods utterly obsolete.
Concepts like working in confined offices and shopping in physical locations have ceased to be relevant in the new normal.
Giving this radical change in how we live our lives, it is unsurprising that companies have had to adapt and transform rapidly. The current health crisis is now a primary driver of a significant digital shift.
While some companies have embraced this digital shift, others are still behind the curve and must now rush to adapt or risk being swallowed up by the impact of Covid-19 on the economy.

While Covid-19 is the catalyst for this sudden digital shift, the effects of such a transformation will continue well beyond the current health crisis.

Businesses’ success or failure during this transitional time will define not only their “new normal” but also their future.

A successful digital shift can be broken down into three principal elements:

Throughout this article, we will demonstrate these elements, and their connected benefits, through the use of a specific use case: data collection methods in the field.

Digitization

The old way of collecting data with paper forms is slowed down by government restrictions of social distancing which therefore has forced businesses into rapid digitization.

Digital technologies, like cloud computing and videoconferencing, have become an integral part of current business infrastructure.

Field data collection applications are an excellent example of this trend. The use of pen and paper field forms has gone from just time-consuming and error-prone to a potential viral vector because it involves going back and forth to the office to share the data and meet with people in charge of the data transcription in the database.

Those data collection companies who have switched to mobile data collection using a field data collection app are already reaping the benefits.

Lowered costs, increased data accuracy, and reduced physical contact levels between employees are giving companies that have embraced the digital shift a significant competitive edge and a safer workplace.

Collaboration

With the new normal significantly reducing opportunities for physical encounters, the need for digital collaboration between teams has never been more critical.

Successful companies will find digital collaboration mechanisms that increase overall efficiency. Redesign the working method used during field operations will be a crucial subject of transformation.

Survey data collection is often a siloed activity, reducing opportunities for collaboration.

The use of a data collection app allows employees to collect and share data without the need for physical interaction. In conclusion, a data collection tool increases collaboration within a team.

Change Management after the digital shift

As critical as a rapid digital shift is to a business’s chances of survival post-Covid-19, a disorderly technological change without a logical roadmap is a recipe for disaster.

Rather than a piecemeal approach, integrating the right technologies at the right time is the key to optimizing a business’s operations at all levels, including:

  • The data collector in the field – more efficient and exposed to less risk
  • Field team supervisor – able to access up to the real time data
  • Management – empowered by accurate data to make better decisions faster

Specific digital forms are created with a mobile form builder then filled with a mobile forms app.

This might seem like a small change, but standardized forms are more accessible and easier to analyze, while the use of data collection apps is safer and more efficient because the data flow is automated which avoids any human interaction during the process.

By embracing digitization, enhancing collaboration, and implementing targeted change management, companies can turn the obstacles of the new normal into opportunities for success in the future.

Sharing Field Data in Real Time

One of the problems with past field data collection methods was the lag in sharing data with stakeholders. Consequently, manual data collection could create costly errors and delays for businesses.

However, times have changed. Field data collection software and GIS apps have streamlined the process and made sharing data easier and faster than ever before.

Coral Collect is one such field survey app. With it, you can share a field data collection form with a single click, enhancing the data collection process for all involved. Stakeholders like customers and managers can then make better and faster decisions with the collected information.

Benefits of real-time data sharing with Coral Collect

Data collection is a recurring activity. The goal is to collect the right data, in the right format, and to share it quickly with stakeholders. These stakeholders depend on the field data and need to view the most up-to-date information at any given time.

Because the Coral Collect system synchronizes with a cloud service, the information can be viewed or exported anywhere and in real time by customers or managers with access to the data collection platform. Thus, users can view the data automatically on a web map or export the data and view it in a preferred software (QGIS, for example).

Everyone who has access to the data can retrieve it in various formats such as CSV, Shapefile, GeoJSON, Excel, or PDF. Or, users can view them on an online map.

You can invite clients or customers to view the information at any time. Having easy access to data in multiple formats enables more advanced uses of this information in real time.

How to share your real-time data with Coral Collect

Follow these steps to create an account and share your important data in real time with stakeholders.

  1. Create a Coral Collect account at api.chacc.tech
  2. Create a new project
    • Press the “+” button in the “My projects” section. All the information collected in the field will be compiled here. You can create multiple projects for different operations.
  3. Create field forms
    • Access the mobile form builder by pressing the “+” button in the “Forms” section to create digital forms
    • For a detailed explanation, you can watch this video
  4. Apply permissions

This part is necessary to ensure all stakeholders can intervene on the project as you wish. This is the recommended way to get started:

  • In Organization click on “Teams”
  • Click on the “Collector” group
  • Check the “Show” and “Change” boxes next to the project you just created
  • Check the “Show” box next to the form you just created

To then let stakeholders of your choice view real-time project data and download the data collection forms:

  • Go back to “Teams”
  • Click on “Guest”
  • Check the “Show” and “Export” boxes next to the project you just created
  1. Invite your stakeholders (they will receive an invitation email)
    • Go to “Organization”
    • Click on “members”
    • Click on “+” and enter the email address of all the stakeholders you wish to invite
    • Choose which group of permissions you will place them in based on if they are clients or data collectors
  2. Collect your data and visualize it in real time
    • Open the inspection app and start collecting data in the field
    • You can watch a video that shows you how to collect the data in the field with Coral Collect
    • As your teams collect data, they will be visible in the Project tab when they sync their device.
  3. Export data (optional)
    • In the “My projects” tab, select the project with the data you want to recover
    • Click on the export button at the top right
    • Select “Data”
    • Choose the format you want

Survey data collection of the past was a time-consuming process. From going out into the field, taking pictures, writing paper forms, to entering them into a computer, a lot could go wrong.

Thanks to solutions like Coral Collect’s, these processes are quicker, easier, and produce fewer errors. You can collect, save, and share data in the field in a collaborative way. Furthermore, all levels of the organization including the technicians, analysts, and managers can be involved in field data management.

How to Collect Data Offline: Traditional vs Modern Method

Data collection is necessary for companies that need to get up-to-date information on the state of the situation on the ground. This data is essential for making informed decisions. Collect data offline or with a limited access to the internet while in the field is the biggest issue for companies. Survey data collection is already a monotonous and tedious task. Its difficulty becomes compounded when that task isn’t automated with field data collection software.

For companies working in the field, there are two methods of collecting data offline:

Traditional Method: Paper

The traditional method to collect data in general is via paper forms. Paper was for a long time the best way to collect and store field form data.

Pros:

  • Individuals can fill out paper forms anywhere, at any time.
  • No training is needed

Cons:

  • Time consuming so expensive
  • Takes up a large amount of physical space.
  • Unreliable.
  • Difficult to organize.
  • Difficult to scale.

Modern Method: Digital

The digitization of work processes across the board has led to a fundamental shift in how we collect data. Data collection tools automate the entire process of data collection.

The following tools typically fall within data collection apps:

  • Mobile forms apps
  • Field data collection apps
  • GIS apps

Since digital field data collection is much faster, offline collection functionality has become essential.

Pros:

  • Cost efficient.
  • Takes up no physical space.
  • Reliable.
  • Scalable.

Cons:

  • For businesses using offline data collection apps for the first time, requires some adaptation time.

Collect Data Offline: How it Works

Mobile data collection apps connect to a cloud where it stores and synchronizes data. This requires an internet connection. In cases where the internet is poor or unavailable, the synchronization speed slows to a halt.

Offline data collection apps synchronize data from the cloud before the data collection operatin. Data is then available on the app without the use of the internet.

Individuals should follow these steps when in the field:

●  Before going into the field, individuals need to synchronize their device with their database. Without the internet, we can’t have up-to-date information.

●  Then he or she collects data in offline mode with field forms. It’s stored locally.

●  Upon returning from the field, or when an internet connection is available, data synchronization can occur.

Offline data collection, with the right application, is simple and fun to use. Long gone are the tedious days of printing, filling, and organizing reams of paper. Now is the digital era, where data is fully automated and always accessible.

Collect Data Offline: How to Get Started

Coral Collect is the best way to fully automate offline data collection. It allows users to collaborate on data through sharing, collecting and saving information in the field. For those who still use paper documents, trying to organize their way out, Coral Collect is the solution.

Users can use this solution to:

●  Create digital forms tailored to their business.

●  Fill out data collection forms in the field.

●  Export data to a a database. This data is instantly accessible on a web dashboard where users can view it at any time.

Get more information on signing up and pricing for Coral Collect!

Or start using Coral Collect today!

I collect data in the field with my good old paper form

We often hear people saying, “I collect data in the field with my good old paper form. I have always done it that way and it works great.”

The accessibility, low cost and the fact that the use of paper forms does not require any special training are undeniable. However, the simplicity of using pen and paper when doing field surveys does not necessarily mean that this is the best or most effective way of getting things done.

If you are serious about improving your work processes and increasing your productivity, here are the 3 top reasons why using paper forms is no longer the best solution when compared with field data collection apps.

1. Communication delays

During field operations, communication between field workers and the office is one of the fundamental factors that determine efficiency. In the case of paper forms, it is necessary for field workers to first return to the office in order to share their data before it can be analyzed.

2. Transcription errors

Another element which comes into play when using paper forms for field work is the fact that data collected has to be manually entered into a database once it has been returned to the office. This process can be both time consuming as well as inaccurate and any field technician that had to do this will know how tedious it can be!

Other potential problems that can arise when paper forms are used for field surveys are:

  • data entry errors
  • incomplete forms
  • lost or damaged forms
  • forgotten forms that are never processed

3. Messy Workflow

An organised and efficient workflow is difficult to achieve when using paper forms for field work. This can quickly lead to unwieldy and burdensome processes.

The key to overcoming the above and other problems is the standardisation and automation of data collection in the field.

The answer – Coral Collect

A perfect solution to avoid the inefficiency and errors that often occur with paper form surveys is to use a data collection app.

Coral Collect makes data collection in the field a simple, efficient and streamlined process. With Coral Collect, you can now fill out forms digitally on a tablet or even your phone. You can then send your data directly to the database without having to go through the additional process of entering it into a database manually.

Coral Collect’s ultra streamlined process thus means that much of the tedious and error-prone work that is necessary with traditional paper form surveys in the field is fully automated in addition to the fact that errors can be drastically reduced.

Other features that Coral Collect offers:

  • Add media and photos to your data
  • Automatically capture the geographic position at which your data was collected
  • You can completely avoid transcription and manual data input errors
  • Your data’s format is standardised, meaning that it is easier to analyze

Get Coral Collect for free now and see for yourself how much more you can accomplish with a field data collection app!

Field Data Collection, What is it?

For almost all domains, you need data to improve it, whether that is researching data to grow a business, or creating an AI that can only be fed on data collection.

There are all kinds of data collection, and today, we’re going to show you everything you need to know about field data collection.

Let’s take a look!

What is field data collection?

Field data collection is the process of gathering data in person at ground level or remotely (aerial data capture), in a specifically chosen physical location or environment.

There are different types of companies in several industries that collect field data. We’ve gathered just a few to better explain why field data collection is important.

  • Companies in the agricultural sector that monitor crops or manage pests.
  • Construction and engineering companies that inspect buildings or ensure the health and safety of their employees on construction sites.
  • Environmental companies that inspect shoreline pollution or soil and borehole sampling.
  • Telecommunications companies that do pole inspections.
  • Municipalities that carry out road sign inspections or road surface control.
  • Electrical companies that need to collect data on environment to implement their services.

On-site data collection is extremely important. It allows companies to provide their services to the public, while having the necessary information to make smart decisions.

How to collect data

There are old and modern ways to collect data in the field, either through paper forms or specific software, but the most important thing is to collect that data with accuracy and transcribe it to your database rapidly.

One of the most used ways to collect data nowadays is through mobile apps that easily automate the process and allows to create reports, databases, etc.

There are many apps that help, such as Coral Collect. They allow researchers to create powerful mobile forms, collect qualitative and quantitative data, and visualize it with just a tap of the finger.

Different types of data collection

There are several different purposes to collect data on-site, from inspections to checklists, which allow researchers to create an organized system to process the field data, make it easier to read and, of course, compile it for reference.

Here are the different types of data collection you will find on the field:

·  Investigations: An investigation is an operation that aims to obtain information for the resolution of problems. (a formal or systematic examination or research)

·  Inspections: An inspection is carried out to examine or control an infrastructure or an area to know its current state. 

·  Assessments: An assessment is used to determine the importance, size, scale, or value of something. For example: A damage assessment can collect data on the extent of property damage caused by a natural disaster, such as a hurricane, tornado, or earthquake.

·  Inventories: Identify the stock to check that everything is in order.

·  Checklists: A checklist is simply a list of things to do or check. For example: A jobsite safety checklist will collect data to ensure that a jobsite meets the safety standard.

Data compilation and analysis

After collection your data, the next step is to compile it and, ultimately, analyze it. If you use a data collection application, the compilation is automatically done, but what format do you want to analyze your data and in what dimension is the real question.

Different formats allow you to view your data differently, in a georeferenced or tabular way, and even allow you to create pdf reports. Here are the most popular formats used by field data collection solutions and their correspondence in terms of analysis:

  • Georeferenced or so-called “spatial” analysis: Shapefile, Geojson, KMZ
  • Tabular analysis: CSV or Excel
  • Reports: PDF

In Short

Data collection is essential for companies and industries to work, as well as for technology and innovation continuing to grow. There are many ways to collect data, as well as analyze it, different software or apps you can use to facilitate the process, but overall what’s important is what is done with the data and the impact it brings to the world and its population.

Working with Geospatial Data! A Mystery for Neophytes

Geospatial data technologies such as geographic information systems (GIS) and geomatics sound like futuristic elements that are inaccessible to ordinary people, but individuals use these technologies every day.

For example, when we use car GPS to plan a family road trip or figure out where the closest takeout restaurant is, we rely on geospatial data.

Tasks that require knowing the location of an individual or object on the planet use geospatial technologies to record and transmit that data.

Chaac Technologies and Geospatial Data

As experts in the domain of geospatial technology, we at Chaac Technologies specialize in managing data. Originally, our expertise comes from dealing with data when it’s most critical: during environmental emergencies.

From oil spills to forest fires, geospatial data is necessary in regions where data position is crucial. Our mission is to democratize the acquisition, processing, and sharing of field data with the most relevant tools by creating a technological ecosystem with geomatics and geospatial data.

The individuals who work with field data collection software are generally neophytes in the field of geomatics. That is why we want to provide those exceptional workers with the necessary tools to collect, export, and locate that data on a map.

What are Geomatics, GIS, and GPS?

Where geospatial data involves object placement in areas (-spatial) on Earth (geo-), geomatics is the automation of geographical data. The root “matics,” also found in words like schematics or automatic, comes from computer science and represents geographical data processing.

Geographic information systems (GIS) acquire, store, examine and refine geospatial data using geomatic applications. Despite the scarcity of public knowledge on GIS apps, over 80 percent of the world is encompassed in geospatial data, and more is accumulating every day.

How Does GIS Technology Affect Data Applications?

GIS and geomatics perform a wide array of processes to provide accurate geospatial information as quickly as possible. We will cover the following terms in this article:

  • Data Gathering
  • Processing of Georeferenced data
  • Exporting Formats

Data Gathering

There are many GIS tools for us to utilize. For those who work in the field to collect critical data for their area of expertise, geographic data is imperative to understand and visualize trends in the data.

Trends in data are essential to making informed and empowering decisions, such as evaluating the condition of telecommunication poles, observing the location and level of shorelines contamination during oil spills, or simply going door to door to collect donations.

When gathering data, two key components are necessary: the data’s geographical position and descriptive information associated with that data. The data collection can proceed in two ways.

Outdated Data Collection Tools

The outdated data collection method uses paper data collection forms, GPS, and a camera. This method requires exorbitant resources and hours spent preparing, filling out, and re-transcribing data in a database from the paper forms.

Efficient Data Collection

Field data collection apps, such as Coral Collect, which specializes in collecting and managing georeferenced data in field forms, require a smart device. With a phone or tablet containing the data application, mobile forms can be prepared and shared with the team before entering the field.

This data is then uploaded with a picture, description, geospatial location and synchronized in real-time. For offline data collection, individuals can upload the forms to a cloud at the end of the day.

Processing of Georeferenced Data

In the days of paper, processing georeferenced data involved coordinating all the data at the end of the day with the team, often becoming a confusing and laborious task.

With apps like Coral Collect, individuals can process data in real-time with an internet connection, where it is available in the application dashboard whenever needed. Data can be exported or viewed at any time.

Understanding the Export Formats

There are several export formats for geospatial data, such as comma-separated values (CSV) or Shapefile. While these files are somewhat abstract, their main advantage is that they contain GPS information in a ready format for immediate display of the data on a geographical map.

Conclusion

At Chaac technologies, we want data applications to do the busy work so that you can focus on the work that matters. So, if you’re ready to start collecting data in the field, head to our registration page!

5 Data Security Factors to Consider When Evaluating Your Next Software as a Service (SaaS) Provider

The explosion of the Internet of Things (IoT) and the digitization of field operations by companies of all sizes continues to cause serious considerations for cybersecurity, data management, and data security. Is your Software as a Service (SaaS) provider securing your data properly? You need to know.

“92% of surveyed enterprises mostly commonly used software as a service for office automation, IT,-services support, and niche business applications.[1]” — McKinsey & Company

As field technicians or field operations managers, you’re looking for solutions to collect field data more effectively with mobile forms or remote applications. Perhaps, you’re on the lookout for software tools that improve the data collection performance of teams that work outside your corporate network.

How prepared is your company related to data security [2]?

●  48% of businesses can’t detect if their IoT devices suffered a breach.

●  41% do not encrypt all of their data.

●  35% do not have a cyber-security expert in their organization.

Your operations may start to get complex pretty quickly when you need to consider your security, the data security of your SaaS providers, and cybersecurity readiness of your customers. The following post outlines 5 data security factors to consider:

Factor 1. Is your SaaS Provider secure?

As you expand your operations, your infrastructure, or use field data collection tools that extend beyond your company firewalls, you need to consider the data security of your SaaS provider. How do you know if they are taking the right precautions?

●  Infrastructure and networks – look for documentation, procedures, and tools to fully account for possible breaches in the security.

●  Applications and software – better understand how your SaaS provider accounts for their application usage and how they manage their tools.

Factor 2. Are your operations secure?

It is one thing to ask for guarantees against security threats caused by your SaaS provider, but you may need to review your own operations as well.

●  IT resource accounting – knowing where every laptop, smart phone, or IP enabled device is across your entire organization is challenging. A security opening in one of your devices could exploit the entire system.

SaaS providers can help monitor these threats. A good practice is fully accounting for all your devices.

Factor 3. Is your data secure?

Ensuring your data is secure involves the close coordination of your security operations and an understanding of how your SaaS provider manages their data security. Be proactive and ask your SaaS provider about:

●  Access control for different users or entities that must access their platform. Do they have tight controls and ways to monitor activity?

●  Device management within their cloud software, mobile applications, or data collection services that may run from handheld devices.

●  Data encryption and how information may flow from your devices, via the Internet, and over to your SaaS infrastructure. Do they properly encrypt all traffic?

Factor 4. Are your customers secure?

Most likely you work directly with a SaaS provider. What happens if the software as a service you are using is for your customer? Perhaps, you’re hired to digitize the data collection across an industrial facility.

●  Identity management becomes even more important with stricter controls on the devices in use across the environments.

●  Customer educating is a good idea. Let them know ahead of time how your field operations are set up if they may introduce something into their infrastructure. A heads up about additional bandwidth usage is an example.

Factor 5. Can you verify data security?

Getting a cybersecurity firm involved is also a good idea. An independent third party will perform audits, simulate intrusion attacks, or look for vulnerabilities in areas where neither you, your SaaS provider, nor even your end customer has thought to look.

Security firms are aware of and certified in the latest security standards or protocols, able to run security audits across devices, infrastructure, software, or applications, and they can continuously monitor for suspicious activities.

Creating, Collecting, and Making Sense of Your Field Data with Coral Collect

Leverage a solution that allows you to collect, save, and share data in the field in a collaborative way. Drop your paper forms and save time collecting data, accurately, efficiently, and securely. Get all levels of your organization involved in the management of your data inside your organization and across your SaaS partners.

What to learn more? If you want to reduce data collection errors in the field, and boost efficiency and productivity, contact us today to learn more about how the Coral Collect can help your business!

How Data Collection Apps Can Help During Natural Disaster Management?

When a natural disaster strikes, quickly gathering data regarding their scope can be the difference between life and death. Deadlines are tight, consequences are dire, and the need for control in a chaotic situation is at a premium.

To properly handle the situation, one’s team will need a strong and versatile data collection tool to unite behind. If a proper tool is selected, emergency response organization will have access to a multitude of benefits, including:

  • Automatic Data Entry
  • Real-time Data Access
  • Offline Functionality
  • Geolocalized Data
  • Media Integration

Automatic Data Entry During Natural Disaster

When choosing a data collection tool, it is critical to select one with access to a mobile form’s builder. Custom forms allow their user to tailor forms to the specific data they need for the situation at hand.

For disaster workers, this spares them the stress and time of building a form for the situation. This assures uniformity in the type of data collected and cuts out the time (and risk of error) associated with transcribing paper forms.

Real-time Data Access

Data collection tools allow for information to be sent in real-time to the command center. This allows them to have the maximum amount of information available at any given moment.

In a crisis situation, every ounce of information is pivotal to those making decisions regarding the larger situation. These applications give them an optimal chance at making the right decision — a potentially life-saving measure.

Offline Functionality

Mobile data collection applications typically function without any need to be online. They will function normally while away from the internet and synch to the database when a connection becomes available.

In disaster situations, internet connections and network towers are frequently knocked out. Consequently, having a tool that can be used in zones that are bereft of internet access greatly increases their versatility and operational efficiency.

Geolocalized Data  

All of the data in a mobile data collector is geolocated, linking the data and its location. Usually, a GPS is needed to provide location data. This is an extra step that can be forgotten, miscommunicated, or time-consuming. Geolocalized tags automatically provide the user with a detailed map of the area and which areas are affected, efficiently aiding command in the best ways to organize response.

Media Integration

Much like the geolocated tags, the various forms of media retrieved from the collection scene are automatically linked to the data. Photo, video, and audio are all linked and stored in the database.

As a result, it will no longer be necessary to bring one’s camera in the field, download photos from the SD card, attach them to data, and manually geo-reference them. Like many of the tool’s other features, this serves as an efficient way to save time in a situation where it is paramount.

Conclusion

The value of a field data collection tool in a disaster situation cannot be underestimated. Coral Collect is a tool that does all of this and more.

Curious? Check Coral Collect for free.

What does GDPR mean for data collection?

You are probably already aware of the General Data Privacy Regulation (GDPR) which has been in effect in the European Union since May 25, 2018.

The GDPR aims to address the increasing number of security breaches, data hacking and theft incidents that have become commonplace on the internet today.

Online consumers and internet users in general are becoming increasingly aware of the value that their data can have to hackers as well as corporations. As a result, the demand for greater transparency and responsiveness from the companies that gather and store users’ personal data has become more and more prevalent.

What is the GDPR?

The GDPR aims to replace an older EU directive, which dates back from 1995 and was adopted before the emergence of social networks, big data, cloud computing and the Internet of Things . The directive is a “Privacy Law” which was transposed into Belgian law on December 8, 1992 and dealt with the protection of privacy in terms of personal data collection as well as processing methods and tools.

It was designed to standardize data protection legislation across the EU (European Union) and impose new, more stringent rules on how personally identifiable information (PII) is collected, processed, and stored.

What is PII (Personally Identifiable Information)?

Personally identifiable information is information relating to the following under the GDPR:

  • Sexual orientation
  • Public opinions
  • Race or ethnicity
  • Health
  • Web data (cookies and IP address)
  • Personal Identify information (name, first name, address, etc.

Data privacy in Canada

The Personal Information Protection and Electronic Documents Act (PIPEDA), which is the Canadian equivalent of the GDPR, defines personal data as “any information that can be used to identify an individual”. The regulation includes the following types of data:

  • age, name, ID numbers, income, ethnic origin, blood type
  • Opinions, evaluations, comments, social status, or disciplinary actions
  • Employee files, credit records, loan records, medical records, existence of disputes between customers and vendors, intentions (for example, to acquire goods or services, or change jobs).

Data privacy regulation in the US

Although there are a number of state and federal rules relating to data privacy and protection in the US, it does not currently have an equivalent to the GDPR, nor does it have a central authority that enforces its own regulations.

Who does the GDPR apply to?

At the territorial level, the GDPR applies to all companies engaged in the gathering, processing, and storing of personal data pertaining to individuals in the EU. 

Originally, the GDPR applied only to persons in the European Union. However, the regulation now stipulates that any companies which offer goods or services to persons located in the EU (including free services and products) or track their behaviour (e.g. social media platforms, data collection apps, inspection apps, etc.) are subject to compliance with the GDPR.

This means that even tech giants, such as Google, Amazon, and Facebook, are now obligated to comply with the GDPR insofar as they gather, process or store information pertaining to individuals in the EU.

What do companies have to do to comply with the GDPR?

1. Transparency

The GDPR is based on the principle of transparency. When companies collect, process or store personal data, they are obliged to do so in a transparent manner. In practice, this means that all persons concerned must be informed in clear and understandable language.

Companies must specify what types of data are collected on users, what collected data is used for, how long it will be stored, who it will (or could) be shared with and what the rights of users are with regards to their data.

All the above must be disclosed in a document on the website of the company in question.

2. Consent

Simply informing customers is no longer adequate according to the new GDPR stipulations. It is now necessary to obtain users’ consent before processing and storing of their personal data may legally take place.

3. Ensuring security and legality of data processing

Companies collecting personal data must ensure that technical and organizational measures have been put in place to secure said data.

4. Compliance with special obligations to inform customers in the event of data breaches

In the event of a data breach, companies that have stored the data of the customers must inform all their customers of such a data breach if the breach poses a significant risk (“high risk”) to their customers’ privacy.

The GDPR enforces greater accountability of companies

The GDPR has incorporated two new concepts into its scope of regulation:

1. Privacy by Design

The first new concept in the GDPR is aimed at ensuring data protection by design. This means that companies which intend to gather and process customer information must consider the privacy of their customers when designing new products or services. It is thus necessary for companies to develop products or services that respect their customers’ privacy.

2. Privacy by Default

The second concept aims at ensuring data protection by default. This means that companies must also proactively ensure that their clients’ privacy is respected and kept intact. In other words, the data privacy of clients must be ensured by companies without customers having to request it. An example of how companies should implement this is by configuring their websites to be as “privacy-friendly” as possible.

Is customer data allowed to leave the EU?

Yes. Data may be transferred to other countries as long as the latter provide a sufficient level of data protection. The level of data protection necessary for such countries to be allowed to be the recipients of data obtained from individuals in the EU must be equivalent to that of the GDPR.

What are customers’ rights under the GDPR?

The following are the rights that customers have under the GDPR:

1. Right of access

Customers and users have the right to ask, at any time, whether their data has been collected.

2. Right of rectification

It must be possible for false or incomplete data to be corrected or completed at any time at the request of customers and users.

3. Right of restriction of processing

Under certain circumstances, customers and users have the right to request the restriction of the processing of their data.

4. Right to erasure of data (or “right to be forgotten”)

Under the GDPR, in certain cases users and customers also have the right to demand that their data be erased.

What is the penalty for non-compliance with the GDPR for companies?The penalty that companies which collect, process, or store the information of individuals in the EU are liable to incur if they fail to comply with the GDPR is 2% of the companies’ worldwide turnover. In some cases, this can amount to millions of euros.

5 Reasons to Use a Data Collection Application for Inspections

Workplace inspections are essential for maintenance, compliance, and accident prevention. Most technical work includes a number of these as routine.
Standardized protocols ensure that inspections are done correctly across an organization, and that risks are consistently identified.
A simple paper checklist is better than nothing. But a data collection application is one of the best tools for in-field inspections.

Here are five reasons why a mobile inspection app gives an edge.

1. Quality

Higher quality reports are produced via a field survey app which includes:

  • No more transcription errors,
  • Attached photos,
  • Integrated georeferenced data.

These reports are thorough, complete, and generated automatically. Without any:

  • Inclement weather damage,
  • Employee mistakes,
  • Or missed steps.

2. Standardization

A mobile checklist standardizes all the steps, ensuring that protocol is followed from A to Z. No matter who does the job.

Star employees are great, but company-wide performance shouldn’t depend on individuals.

It’s far better to create digital forms that:

  • Standardize knowledge,
  • Remove the human error factor,

And ensure that jobs are always done correctly.

3. Compliance

A field data collection app will force inspectors to fully complete all checklist steps before registering the process.

This protects against employee forgetfulness or willful mistakes.

4. Speed

An application will allow you to complete an inspection and share it with your supervisor in less time than if you were using paper.

  • No need to print and bring the inspection sheet back to the office.
  • No need to transcribe the data from the paper form manually into the database.
  • The inspection sheet is automatically sent to the supervisor via the application.

 5. Flexible

A mobile data collection app will create as many digital forms and checklists as needed, for all the types of inspections performed.

With offline data collection, this field survey app can be used no matter where the job is.

Conclusion

A mobile field data collection app is a superior way to collect, save, and share field data.

Organizations who switch to mobile survey apps spend far less time performing inspections. More time can then be spent on the inspection itself or on improving general inspection processes.

Coral Collect lets organizations do this in a collaborative way.

All levels of the organization can be involved in field data management. Technicians, analysts, and managers all benefit from a forms app that includes operations monitoring, performance analytics, and cleanly generated technical reports.

Along with better in-field performance, Coral Collect gives increased transparency, accountability, and compliance. It’s a good choice of data collection application for inspections