Workplace health and safety and electrical safety officers in Queensland’s Department of Justice and Attorney-General (DJAG) will soon be equipped with a Windows tablet toting a custom-built mobile application in an effort by the department to improve operational efficiency.
DJAG - the state agency responsible for administering justice in Queensland - looks after numerous business units including two key department offices: Workplace Health and Safety Queensland (WHSQ) and the Electrical Safety Office (ESO), which are administered by the Office of Fair and Safe Work Queensland (OFSWQ).
Officers in the two units - which number about 280 across 18 locations - visit workplaces to monitor and enforce compliance in relation to workplace health and safety and safe electrical industry practices respectively.
DJAG earlier this year announced it would seek to remove the “cumbersome and numerous devices and handwritten materials” the OFSWQ officers currently deal with, and replace them with a Windows 8.1-based tablet equipped with a custom designed mobile application that would support access to corporate systems while on site.
The OFSWQ expects the arrangement will result in more site inspections being completed with greater detail (including photo and audio) being recorded, less time spent on producing and delivering the inspection records, and improved consistency and transparency.
Inspectors currently issue inspection reports or notices, or both, on a particular workplace, which are completed either by handwritten copy or within the CISR desktop user interface back at base.
“The main objective of this project is to make the OFSWQ Inspectorate a mobile technology enabled workforce,” the department stated in tender documents.
“Inspectors are to be provided with all the necessary hardware and software tools that will enable them to attend an employer site, complete an assessment, provide all required documentation and have access to all historical and reference material required.
"The net result is intended to be less time spent by inspectors at their desk, and more time available for field work.”
The agency has approached the market for the development of a mobile application to integrate with its in-house compliance and investigation case management system, called CISR. The system’s data store is an Oracle database that the agency is currently upgrading.
The department expects that the system’s interface to the tablet devices will be written using Weblogic 10.0 (Java EE 5) web services modules.
The software development phase of the mobile app project is slated to last six months from October this year. Once the app is live, the successful tenderer will support and maintain the app for two years with a possible one year extension.