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More Effective and Productive Audits and Inspections with Mobile Devices
Using a mobile device along with software specifically for the task at hand, as well other attachments for these devices such as Bluetooth and remote cameras can improve the overall efficiency and productivity of any business entity.
The experts charged with inspecting and auditing businesses of every kind are turning more and more to mobile devices to provide a level of oversight, compliance, and remediation that no clipboard and boilerplate inspection form could ever deliver. From food manufacturing plants and retail stores to high tech electronics companies and public utilities, businesses around the world are recognizing that if they want to conduct efficient and effective inspections and audits of their systems and processes, mobile devices and the software and high tech attachments for them are the way to go.
Some of the newest trends in using mobile devices for audits and inspections include a variety of applications now available on the iPad, PDAs, and barcode readers. Now, when using these devices, the auditor or inspector is able to access programs such as inventory and management, environmental management programs, waste management programs, and audit and inspection software, and to compile data and then upload the information into a central database for further analysis.
The use of mobile devices allows the auditor and inspector to easily conduct surveys in a given business with a list of answers or yes or no replies already programmed into their device, which gives them greater flexibility and ability to move around a particular location while also conducting a visual inspection of the premises. The answers are recorded by the device and then easily filtered and analyzed for compliance and remedies without having to go through the extra time consuming steps of manually grouping and transposing the information.
Mobile devices can increase the overall productivity of a particular business tenfold by compacting the time that it takes from inspection to analysis of the data and thereby identifying areas of non-compliance and/or inefficiency before they lead to costly fines, not to mention the benefit of finding out about a problem area of your business before it undermines the bottom line. Not to be underestimated when looking into the latest techniques for
applying the mobile device to audits and inspections is in the area of
safety of the workplace and compliance with safety regulations. These
devices are able to transmit information about your fire safety
equipment in real time to produce detailed check lists as to capability
of the equipment (such as fire extinguishers) in the case of a change in
regulations, and the age of the equipment.
Both the auditing and the inspecting process benefit tremendously from the use of mobile devices, especially when incorporating some of the newest applications to the mobile device. Some of the more important features of devices used for the purpose of auditing and inspecting are long battery life of the device, a touchscreen, full browser capability, and wifi. Other features that can be very helpful and add to the productivity of the entire process are a Bluetooth for recording comments and a way to connect the Bluetooth to other scanning devices as well as a portable camera for visible inspections of premises.
The camera and Bluetooth come in handy with a barcode application and a means of connecting to Bluetooth scanning devices, which can help an inspector verify label and package contents in real-time. Getting shipping information correct and creating a process to ensure that it is always correct, or at least most of the time, has always been a problem but when utilizing a mobile device along with a camera and Bluetooth, this process is much more easily monitored and managed for the highest