Improving the Data Management Process with Mobile Data Collection
Integrating mobile field data collection into a data management process brings a multitude of benefits. To highlight some of these benefits, Langan performed a case study using a former chemical manufacturing facility with a longstanding groundwater monitoring program. Data at this facility was historically collected and checked using manual methods. Langan implemented an electronic workflow and compared the old and new workflow to evaluate the benefits. We quickly realized the most notable gain was time saved.
The reduction of time spent in the field, transcribing data, and performing quality control of field forms resulted in an approximate 30% overall time savings.
Our enhanced methods offer a higher level of confidence in data and cost savings for our clients.
Mobile data collection improves the speed at which data becomes available and reduces the overall risk associated with using an incomplete or incorrect dataset for decision making and reporting purposes. The goal of recording field data electronically is to promote the collection of a more standardized set of information that can be easily incorporated into a database/data management program without needing manipulation. Collection of a standardized dataset may include predefined terminology (in the case of lithologic descriptions) or just a set of fields/questions that must be answered for any given task or observation. Providing a “standard” allows for an apples-to-apples comparison of information that ultimately leads to a more complete understanding of our sites. Standardized data improves the efficiency with which we report statistical and other types of analysis to our clients. It also allows us to generate and refine 2D and 3D visualizations.
Additionally, Langan incorporates regulatory requirements and automated screening into our electronic data collection forms to confirm that the data is within the guidelines defined by our client or a regulatory agency. In many instances, we can make electronic field forms available to project stakeholders in near-real-time, allowing for faster decision making and better field-to-office communication.