Tag Archives: Stories from our clients

Experience really counts when it comes to stakeholder management

JLL Infrastructure Advisory are a leading provider of niche land and property approval services to the energy, transport and communications sectors. They reduce approvals risk for projects and secure the requisite land approvals when access to land is required to develop projects.

Working on behalf of a large state based energy company, JLL sought assistance from Mipela in providing a suitable land access management solution to assist with a large lineal asset project.

Whilst members of the JLL team have been exposed to Mipela’s X-Info Suite through several mutual clients over the years, this was a first project directly between JLL and Mipela. Getting the structure of the project and an agreed plan in place was a key success factor to this project being delivered on time and on budget. Having a flexible client and an agile implementation approach resulted in functionality being delivered within the solution that was well above the clients’ expectations. This, in turn, lead to an additional project phase, specifically focusing on stakeholder management, being added to the project.

JLL Infrastructure Advisory’s Head of Infrastructure, Jamahl Waddington said, “The team at Mipela made this project easy. We were able to engage with the Mipela team both in person here in Adelaide or online. I was particularly impressed by their ability and flexibility in integrating with various data sources, mitigating the need for users to have to access multiple applications to do their job.”

Projects like this often include several groups of users from other companies who are all working on the same project. By being able to easily configure X-Info Suite to ensure that Company A only gets to see what Company A requires to see in order to conduct their role in the project was critical.

“Property access and acquisition negotiations can be of a highly a sensitive nature and being able to secure certain information can be critical to the success of the project,” said Waddington. “Mipela’s obviously experienced team were also able to provide valuable insights into best practice relating to land access.”

“We look forward to using X-Info Suite on this project and hopefully others in the future.”

City of Greater Dandenong implements DBYD automated response system

Late last year the City of Greater Dandenong contracted Mipela GeoSolutions to provide them with its Dial Before You Dig automated response system, X-Info DBYD suite. The Council had just become new members to the Dial Before You Dig Association in a move to better protect their assets.

The Council required user authentication using Azure Active Directory over OAuth2, a new function that Mipela offers its clients. Having its own product development and solution specialists inhouse enables Mipela to be able to continuously improve its offerings in this manner, offering these new features to all clients once they have been released.

Ensuring communication channels are open through a dedicated project team is one of the key measures of success in this project running as smoothly as it did.

“The Mipela team were proficient and experienced in guiding us through the Dial Before You Dig automation process. We’re new to this and having that level of support and expertise made the transition a smooth one”, said Milind Joshi, City of Greater Dandenong’s GIS Coordinator. “They were able to coordinate with our ICT team to ensure the Active Directory authentication was established with a minimum of fuss.”

“From a Mipela perspective, it’s always great to hear back from a happy client that their project has gone so well”, said Karen Thompson, Mipela’s Client Success Team Lead.

The City of Greater Dandenong can rest assured its underground assets are much safer now with Dial Before You Dig and X-Info DBYD suite.

Stakeholder management – the answer is blowing in the wind

Vestas Australian Wind Technology – the local arm of Danish wind energy giant Vestas – recently engaged Mipela to provide a stakeholder management platform for a new wind farm project that they are developing near Walcha in NSW.  The project, known as the Winterbourne Wind Farm, has a potential capacity of 700MW which would make it the largest wind farm in Australia if it were built today.

Vestas also wanted a stakeholder management platform that could be scaled to future development projects.  Mipela implemented X-Info Suite to provide a web based solution that can manage stakeholders, property information, agreements and associated payments as well as associated communications. Users are also able to capture data in the field using the mobile data capture app, X-Info Aware.

While the conversations with landholders in the region had been underway for the past fifteen years, the engagement had been quite informal. Owner names were tracked on a simple spreadsheet and Google Earth was used for the property and asset locations. Now all information, including the historical information already captured, is available from one source in X-Info Suite and can be used for several different purposes including bulk communications, geospatially capturing data and payments.

Project Director of the Winterbourne Wind Farm, Doug Landfear said, “The team at Mipela have provided us with a best practice stakeholder management system that has the flexibility to provide us with a comprehensive solution into the future as this project matures. Their expertise and experience in delivering the solution made the process simple – we were able to start working with the software in a matter of weeks. The Mipela Solution Specialist was insanely efficient and made the project a breeze.”

One other interesting dimension is that Vestas purchased the project from Walcha Energy who is developing other renewable energy projects in the Walcha area.  Walcha Energy is also using X-Info Suite to manage its stakeholder management across these other assets.

Flavour of the month – renewable energy projects

There is an exponentially increasing number of renewable projects being undertaken across Australia at the moment, in various stages of maturity. According to Clean Energy Council’s website, there are currently 103 projects that are in construction or due to start soon across Australia. These projects will deliver over $27 billion in investment, 17,747 MW of new renewable energy capacity and create 16,656 direct jobs.

Mipela has been very active in this sector, undertaking work from concept phase like desktop analysis right through to the operational phase of community consultation and stakeholder engagement and progressing to land access management.

Recently one of our long standing clients, CNC Project Management, implemented a new stakeholder management and contract management solution for one of their renewable energy clients. CNC Project Management has worked with Mipela providing X-Info Suite solutions to automate these often time consuming business functions to its clients for more than ten years.

In one of the current examples, CNC Project Management are engaged to efficiently manage all stakeholder engagement including the automation of contract milestones, stakeholder communications and land owner liaison. They use X-Info Suite to automate many of the workflow processes associated with this work and capture all related engagement communications.

This project is just one of dozens that Mipela are currently working with to provide stakeholder management, community consultation and land access solutions to using X-Info Suite. For more information, just give our Client Success team a call on 1300 807 770.

Automation in Remote Regions Delivers Multiple Benefits to Council

Isaac Regional Council is the resources capital of Queensland, producing more than half of Queensland’s total saleable coal.

The Council’s role is to provide facilities throughout the region in an effective and efficient manner and encourage strategic and sustainable development of the area for the benefit of all residents. As part of Councils continuous improvement strategy, they have looked to technology and in turn to Mipela to implement an automated response system for their Dial Before You Dig (DBYD) enquiries, namely X-Info DBYD suite.

Automation of this service ensures valuable staff resources are retained for important work that technology can’t replace. Regional areas strive to retain great people that deliver value to Council, which was a large part of Isaac Regional Council looking for a solution to these DBYD tasks.

X-Info DBYD suite also delivers a service that responds to enquiries 24/7, regardless of weekends or public holidays.

Having an automated response system in X-Info DBYD suite now means that enquirers will get a quick, accurate response, ensuring Council are doing all they can to not only protect their assets but to also protect council residents from unforeseen disruption.

Powering through South Australia

ElectraNet’s Hill to Hill Transmission line project (H2H project) involves providing a new source of electricity supply to OZ Minerals’ Prominent Hill mine by constructing a new transmission line from Port Augusta to Roxby Downs in South Australia.

For ElectraNet, this is their first major project utilising their new ESRI Enterprise GIS system.

Project staff and contractors have been presented with expanded options for map products including web maps and apps on top of traditional paper based maps. This has meant educating users around possible products and working with them to understand how new products could suit their needs.

The project involves a large component of remote field work with occasionally limited internet connectivity. The challenges to staff using new hardware and software in the field have been managed by the Mipela GIS Specialist from the ElectraNet Keswick office in Adelaide.

The new GIS platform has also meant that ElectraNet project staff have been, for the first time, able to import and export project data in a variety of formats not possible previously.

Mipela’s onsite project GIS Specialist has become the go to point of contact for GIS on the H2H project. Datasets have been created and rationalised for the first time, advice around data transmittals have been provided to project resources and support has been provided to field users on a full time basis.

GIS has been used in ways not seen before at ElectraNet such as providing a monthly update map of construction progress previously managed in spreadsheets.

The work done on the H2H project has fed into the creation of the ElectraNet GIS Governance strategy as well as day to day GIS procedures.

Services provided for the H2H project have also extended into a new project – the Eyre Peninsula line duplication, giving project staff visibility to multiple projects through the GIS.

There’s no watering down the importance of DBYD responses at Allwater

Allwater operates and maintains metropolitan Adelaide’s water, wastewater and recycled water systems for SA Water under a joint venture contract. SA Water and Allwater work closely together, collaborating on strategy and sharing skills and expertise to manage water services across metropolitan Adelaide. In conjunction with SA Water, Allwater is committed to supplying excellent and affordable water services to Adelaide metropolitan customers.

In late 2018 Allwater chose Mipela’s X-Info Plans Management software to provide their field crews and their client, SA Water, with a tool to automate the collation of all DBYD inquiry responses into a single repository.

For both Allwater and SA Water this meant:

  • Transparency of responses across crews
  • Improves compliance
  • Reduces time of skilled staff doing repetitive administration work
  • Ease of use for across office and field staff
  • Reduces project planning risk
  • Access to necessary data to allow planning by a wider group

The Mipela Implementations team rolled out X-Info Plans Management swiftly and with simple training, allowing Allwater to start using the software immediately.

IT Manager, Don Taylor said, “The team still lodge their enquiries with DBYD as they have in the past, but now receive a single notification to let them know all responses are ready for viewing through the X-Info Plans Management portal, where they can access all responses, maps, documents and associated communications. They can even check the details and status of each job in the portal on any device at any time – even before the final responses are in. It also allows other people to access the same data. This saves time and confusion for the planning and dispatch teams.”

With X-Info Plans Management, Allwater saves precious time collating hundreds of response emails each day, eliminating possible errors caused by human intervention and significantly reducing the processing time for each DBYD enquiry.

Tanami Gas Pipeline data integrity and materials traceability

Sentanil System’s Construction Management System (CMS) was a key tool used in the management of the pipeline Quality Assurance and Quality Control requirements of the recently completed 440 km Tanami Gas Pipeline in Northern Territory.

Newmont Mining Corporation engaged Australian Gas Infrastructure Group (AGIG) to build a gas pipeline to supply gas to its Granites and DBS mines, approximately 550km north-west of Alice Springs. This 440km pipeline follows the alignment of the Tanami Road, passing through a mix of pastoral land, Aboriginal freehold land and Crown land to connect the existing Amadeus Gas Pipeline to Newmont’s Tanami gold mines. It provides Newmont with the ability to use cost effective, reliable and cleaner gas fired power generation in place of existing diesel power generation.

AGIG contracted MPC Kinetic to construct the pipeline, which commenced early in June 2018, and was essentially completed by the end of December 2018. MPC Kinetic engaged Sentanil Systems for the use of the CMS system and associated support for the pipeline construction.

It was a challenging project due to the remoteness, associated limited communications infrastructure and the fast pace of construction. Two mainline crews working simultaneously usually a few hundred kilometres apart and the stringent MDR validation requirements following each hydro test section. Hence it was important to collect the right and relevant data in the field by the inspectors on the intelligent handheld data or scan units, using our data capture program. The program has recently been enhanced to enable intelligent lookups based on other linked lookups (eg. electrode batches and welding procedures) and also provides the ability of GPS data capture at the same time, if required.

Key QA/QC activities and statistics

CMS was also used extensively to produce many of the MDR report requirements, which were subject to extensive third party validation immediately following completion of the 8 hydro test sections. CMS was used to produce the weekly progress ‘Rainbow’ charts.

The CMS project data has been integrated with the survey and other locational related data, and uploaded into AGIG’s corporate X-Info Suite, GIS, Land Management, DBYD and AS2885 systems to provide ongoing support for the operations and maintenance phase of the pipeline.

Sentanil would like to thank AGIG and MPC Kinetic for their valued support during all phases of this very successful project.

Sentanil is one of Mipela’s sister companies.

Incident management and risk analysis of Australasia’s pipelines

The protection of valuable pipeline assets weighs heavily on the minds of both asset owners and operators. The costs associated with damaged or inoperable assets can run into the millions of dollars in material, labour and lost revenue costs, along with impacts on health and wellbeing.

In 2014, Mipela implemented X-Info Connect for the APGA (Australian Petroleum and Gas Association’s) POG (Pipeline Operators Group) to capture the necessary information needed to analyse and inform operators about pipeline incident trends, including data relevant to AS2885. With a web enabled interface (X-Info WebConnect), operators are able to securely log in via an Internet browser and record incident or near miss data with relative ease.

Pipeline owners and operators need to record and analyse information about pipeline incidents in order to understand how they can better protect assets and prevent these incidents from occurring.

A recent upgrade of X-Info WebConnect to version 5.1 has enabled the Activities function to simplify use of the system. This way a user sees only what they need to see in order to perform their tasks. Users can now create an event, find an existing event and look up incident history by case with data going back to 1965.

Steve Dobbie, Business Manager at APGA said, “Over time, this data can be used to detect the existence of spatial patterns in the occurrence of incidents, enabling operators to undertake risk mitigation strategies. The more operators that contribute to the database, the more meaningful the data becomes”.

Getting together with Farming Together

Farming Together (Farm Co-operatives and Collaboration Pilot Program) – is a Federal Government initiative that aims to provide farmers, fishers and foresters with knowledge, skills and materials on collaborative ideas, co-operative structures and collective strategies. The program is managed by Southern Cross University in Lismore, NSW.

Farming Together aims to:

  • Improve knowledge of how co-operatives, collective strategies and supply chain negotiations can improve farmers’ returns
  • Improve the knowledge of business models and collaboration options available to farmers and farm advisors
  • Improve the agriculture focused legal and financial expert advice available regarding the process, implementation and management of such business models.

Managing this program involves a significant amount of progress tracking and reporting. The Farming Together team had been using a proprietary CRM but needed more. The team members wanted access to data in usable formats and accurate reporting – at case or program level, delivered in a timely manner.

Mipela was chosen to provide a solution that could give them real-time access to accurate information, automating their workflow processes and approvals. The team at Mipela went about configuring  X-Info Suite to align to Farming Together’s business processes and reporting requirements, ensuring that users had what they needed, when they needed it and in a format they could use.

Users of X-Info Service Suite experienced immediate improvements through the ability to access the data using the individually configured dataviews, improved search functionality and the ability to see a financial and service snapshot in one view. Seeing a summary of a case in one screen has made internal control easier and more effective. This has resulted in greater transparency over case files and improved efficiencies in time taken to complete tasks.

Having learnt a hard lesson on what didn’t work well, the team at Farming Together was committed to working with Mipela to invest the time and effort in implementing a successful solution – and it’s paid off in time-efficiency.

The result has been a more committed project team. They were able to undertake some major data cleansing and remove inaccurate data along the way which has led to improved, more accurate financial reporting. In turn, this made ongoing monthly financial reporting far more efficient, with no anomalies to review.

“We had a really good experience working with Dirk, he met our needs and was very patient with us during the process. Dirk persevered through some difficult moments with our data cleansing which was a relief and appreciated by our team,” said Emma Hunter, Farming Together’s operations manager.

“Overall, now we have something that makes our job easier!” she said.