Category Archives: Spring 2021

A word from the Boss

Welcome to our 2021 Spring newsletter

Service Enhanced Solutions to accelerate your ESG Program

In this edition we provide a sneak peak of the X-Info Connect v6.2 release, ARTC’s rollout of X-Info DBYD suite and an update on new features available in X-Info Plans Management.

The energy and infrastructure sectors are at a point of inflection. Global events such as COVID-19 and a supply and demand unbalance are providing a challenging environment for companies, management, and technical teams on the frontlines. History proves that technology innovation accelerates when disruptive events occur.

How we look to develop a sustainable environmental, social, governance “license to operate” are each a significant objective. There’s never been a more important time for business to show stakeholders their human side. Not with words, but through actions. By doing the right thing and by delivering positive experiences for their internal and external stakeholders is we believe 100% about people.

Mipela GeoSolutions commercial-off-the-shelf Solution-with-a-Service allows you to focus on the lifecycle of your Service and Assets utilising our innovative X-Info suite technology to capture, measure and report on your daily activities with the view to optimise and continuously improve with technical assurance.

In closing, I would like to acknowledge and welcome one of our most recent new clients ARTC to the Mipela family.

Please reach out to us if you have any questions, let us know what we have done well or not so well in these last three months. It goes without saying that we take nothing for granted and are grateful for your ongoing support. We look forward to continuing our purpose of “connecting people with information”.

From all the team at Mipela GeoSolutions, stay safe!

Hayden McDonald
Founder and Managing Director

ARTC implements X-Info DBYD suite as their automated response system

ARTC is a vital part of the transport supply chain for Australia with a 8,500 km rail network across five states and working with rail operators to provide access to rail for business and producers across Australia.

Earlier this year, Australian Rail Track Corporation (ARTC) contacted Mipela to discuss automating their Dial Before You Dig (DBYD) responses.

Being a DBYD member, ARTC up until this point had been manually responding to each enquiry.

The business required a fast and reliable response system that directed all enquirers to seek authorisation before breaking ground within a radius of the rail corridor.

Ensuring timely responses provides ARTC with visibility of these enquirers’ requests in the interactive map on the X-Info DBYD suite dashboard.

ARTC now have a responsive and reliable system working 24/7 providing peace of mind.

Beware the Spreadsheet

If you’re managing your stakeholders on spreadsheets, you’re putting your project at unnecessary risk.

Spreadsheets have poor security for often important information and data quality can easily be compromised by user error or inputting of replicated data. Version control can be a nightmare and this also puts the integrity of your data at risk. This is especially the case when you have multiple people accessing the same spreadsheet. There is also a strong inability to track who makes changes or deletions – intentional or otherwise.

Designed to be more of an accounting tool than a data repository, spreadsheets don’t have great search and collate capabilities. Reporting is tedious – pulling a report from a spreadsheet is like pulling teeth!

Often stakeholder management professionals are more right brained than left – not very methodical and process driven. Basically, stakeholder management professionals aren’t suited to using spreadsheets.

The time it takes to enter and re enter information into a spreadsheet is costly and takes stakeholder management professionals away from their core role – engaging with stakeholders.

Mipela recently released a stakeholder management solution that is quick to deploy simple to use. X-Info Stakeholder Management is a commercial-off-the-shelf product that provides you the ability to capture, find and report on all stakeholder interactions. Send us your user details and existing information in templates we provide you and we’ll get you up and running in just a few days. From there you can add additional functionality to the solution as you need to by utilising our Technical Support Contract (TSC) or bundles of TSC hours for more detailed enhancements.

There’s more info available here on our website.

Contact our Client Success team for more info on +61 7 3252 5589 or info@mipela.com.au.

If you are breaking ground out in the field – we have you covered!

X-Info Plans Management is a web based app that automates the collation of your incoming DBYD responses.

With X-Info Plans Management, you simply lodge your enquiries with DBYD, then receive a single notification to let you know all responses are ready for viewing through the X-Info Plans Management app where your staff can access all maps, documents and associated communications.

X-Info Plans Management now has a new tab called Plans Management Field Portal specifically designed for field workers to view on their smart device.

This new tab allows easy viewing for field crews to quickly search and retrieve all the responses to the DBYD enquiries that they have lodged. All information is made available in an easy to view format and there is no chance mixing up responses from another job, we have filed them all together. One enquiry gives you all the responses, letting you get on with the job.

Once open, you can share a PDF response vie email, text or any other messaging service to external parties by using the forward option at the bottom of the screen.

There’s more info available here on our website.

Contact our Client Success team for more info on +61 7 3252 5589 or info@mipela.com.au.

Product Update – X-Info Connect v6.2 release

Mipela GeoSolutions have just released the latest product versions for X-Info Connect and X-Info WebConnect. Version 6.2 of X-Info Connect and X-Info WebConnect contains a large amount of great new features, which include:

Open Records After Capturing

Capture activities can now be configured to display the record or data captured when complete. This is a valuable feature that can enable continuous workflow for users. The object relating to the data will be displayed once the User selects done for the activity.

Website/URL access within an Activity Layout

A website control can be added to an activity layout to display a defined URL within the layout. When the activity is displayed in the layout, Users can actively use the website, providing access to other external information.

Editable Rich Text Fields supported in X-Info WebConnect

Rich text fields used in an Activity are now editable within X-Info WebConnect. This allows the data captured access to styling and formatting tools along with adding images and tables.

Multiple Sort Columns in Searches

Search results can be displayed by multiple sort ordering. Configuration of search results allows one or more fields to be selected to define sort order of results.

Export Tables and Lists to CSV

Search result lists and data displayed in a table can be exported to a csv file for external use. This is available as a button (for search results lists) or within the right click context menu. All columns and records displayed within the table, including additional pages, will be saved to a csv file.

Drag and Drop Emails to Add as Communications

Emails from Microsoft Outlook can be added as communications to capture activities using drag and drop functionality. When configured, Users can step through a workflow that allows an email to be dragged into a communication capture. This will add all relevant communication details such as Subject, Description and Attachments automatically.

Create and Send Bulk Emails

This feature enables workflow from start to finish to search and select one or many contacts, review and edit an email subject and body that has been predefined from a template, using a rich text editor, preview the email and communication that is created as a record, edit individual emails within the bulk selection and send the emails. A configurable communication is created that records the email action sent to the recipient/s for each contact.

Our Client Success team will be in touch soon with more information and to offer demos of these new functions.

Tips and Tricks – More about X-Info WebConnect Activities

Q1: What are Activities in X-Info WebConnect?

A1:  Activities are the common things a user does, such as find a land parcel, add a communication, complete an assigned task, add a new contact or update contact details and assigning jobs to users. They can be customised for particular Users and Groups, so Users only see and access the information relevant to them.

With the use of Activities, we can set up overviews, dashboards, reports as well as design activities for specific users to manage their processes and workflow.  This makes their daily tasks more simplified by removing the additional steps and information that isn’t needed to be seen.

Activities include Open, Search, Capture and Overview. Activities can be global, which can apply to all objects and data within the connection, or contextual, which only apply to the relevant object when it is selected from a global activity.

Global Activity

Global Activities are activities relevant to all objects and data within a connection. These activities are displayed in the activities panel. When a global activity is selected, the data is displayed in an activity tab.

Example of a Global Overview Activity – Project overview

Example of a Global Search Activity – Find property (with navigation tools and contextual activities)

  1. Activities can be folderised into logical groups such as Search and Add.
  2. Navigation tools and contextual activity buttons display along the top of the record.
  3. An example of the new interactive Maps activities available in X-Info WebConnect, showing property details including layers made up of internal and extetrnal data and datasets.
  4. Contextual activities can be included as buttons within the layout for easy access.
Contextual Activities

Contextual Activities refer to things that can be done for specific object types (projects, entities, linked entities, contacts, associated contacts, communications etc.), eg. updating or completing a communication or making changes to a current contact.

As per the above diagram, these activities are displayed as a button in the toolbar when the related object is selected.

Example of a Contextual Capture Activity – Add a site visit

Example of a Contextual Search Activity – Find communications

Q2. What are Navigation Tools?

A2. Navigation tools allow you to:

  • Go back and forth between pages
  • Go up and down a list
  • Print the record/page you’re currently in
  • Save changes you’ve made to the record
  • Undo any changes you’ve made (this will take you out of the record completely and abandon any changes made).

Q3. Should I be using a certain browser for X-Info WebConnect?

A3. We recommend using Google Chrome or Microsoft Edge for X-Info WebConnect for optimal performance.

Q4: What if I don’t have any Activities set up, or I want to make changes to my existing ones?

A5: Please log a request with Mipela Support to arrange this for you.

If you would like further information or assistance please contact the Mipela Support Team at support@mipela.com.au.

Something GISSY – Geospatial vector file extensions

We all LOVE GIS data. “Everything happens somewhere”. But what happens when you get some really cool “data” for your project, eg. Roads.gpx? What is a .gpx file? The following is a quick 101 summary of some common vector file formats.

Shapefile (ESRI)

A shapefile actually consists of several files.

Mandatory

  • .shp file containing the feature geometries
  • .dbf file containing the attributes in dBase format
  • .shx index file.

Optional

  • .prj which contains the projection information
  • .xml is the associated metadata.
  • .sbn is the spatial index for optimizing queries.
  • .sbx optimises loading times.

If you ever receive a .shp only you will need to request that all three  files are sent in order to use the data. Recommended that the .prj is also mandatory.

.tab file (MapInfo)

MapInfo .tab files are a proprietary format for MapInfo software. Similar to shapefiles, they require a set of files to represent geographic information and attributes.

  • .dat files contain the tabular data associated as a dBase .dbf file
  • .id files are index files that link graphical objects to database information
  • .map files are the map objects that store geographic information
  • .ind files are index files for the tabular data.

Back to our “Roads.gpx”… which is a .gps Exchange format.

See https://gisgeography.com/gis-formats/  other common vector types.

If all else fails, a Google search can usually uncover some less common formats.

OLDER POSTS
A word from the Boss
ARTC implements X-Info DBYD suite as their automated response system
Beware the Spreadsheet
If you are breaking ground out in the field – we have you covered!
Product Update – X-Info Connect v6.2 release
Tips and Tricks – More about X-Info WebConnect Activities
Something GISSY – Geospatial vector file extensions
A word from the boss
When community focus is key to the success of your project
How Gladstone Area Water Board saves time processing permits using X-Info DBYD suite
What’s new? Product update
Tips and Tricks – X-Info WebConnect
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