27 February 2013

South Africa: Flowcentric-Powered Rokman Set to Change the Way Mines Drive Productivity

press release

FlowCentric Business Process Management (BPM) technology, innovatively packaged into a complete, ground-breaking solution for the mining industry by Ability Solutions, is changing the way in which mining companies manage compliance with SHEQ, guide workflow and enhance productivity.

The solution, Rokman leverages the robust mobile engine Mobiflow from Flux on the sharp end, with tightly integrated FlowCentric BPM at the back end.

Rokman is in the process of implementation at two mines, with both of them giving the solution a thumbs-up so far.

Rokman has tremendous potential to support mines in reducing accidents, managing health and safety risks, driving operational efficiencies, achieving production targets and ensuring legal compliance.

A promising future

We believe that the solution has a promising future in an industry that faces a complex compliance environment, hundreds of accidents on a weekly basis, and an excess of 160 deaths per year.

Rokman is a FlowCentric Processware-enabled end-to end-solution that can be tailored to automate a mine's specific processes, enforce compliance and authorisations, and ensure that information is where it needs to be. The solution is delivered on rugged mobile, handheld devices that are designed to withstand hostile environments.

Shift supervisors sign on via drop-down boxes on the screen after collection of equipment from the lamp room. The system automatically loads predefined tasks for that shift according to the mine's operational procedures.

Tasks are managed by icon-driven responses and, depending on the response, the operator is automatically routed to the next appropriate action while all the time the system is monitoring the progress of tasks against a planned schedule.

User-, date- and time-stamped audit trails

Depending on levels of communication infrastructure available, be it in the cross-cut, rest area, bottom of the shaft or in the base of an open-cast mine, the required data is captured and transmitted, as soon as practical, to the appropriate structures for action. Each transaction is supported by user-, date- and time-stamped audit trails.

Rokman's icon-driven mobile screens make customisation, or the adding of functionality, simple and quick, while the underlying BPM engine routes notifications and assignments to the correct people, supported by full escalation, according to the mine's operational rules.

Seamlessly integrated into Microsoft Outlook, management can access a master console to analyse the KPI for their area of responsibility, see which pre-scheduled tasks have been actioned, or are now overdue, respond to requests, and schedule new tasks on the fly to the appropriate people or departments.

To support the legal process, electronic signatures or fingerprint images can be captured in terms of declarations etc.

Work online or offline

The robust devices can work online or offline. Data can immediately be synched to the manager's console depending on the mine's communication infrastructure. In a worst-case scenario, data will be automatically uploaded at the end of the shift. Managers can view completed safety checks and analyse the underlying data to detect patterns of equipment failure, lost production, and non-compliance, amongst other things.

It is probably the most reliable and accurate way to analyse a day's work in a mine without management being physically present the whole time.

The solution has been cleverly-packaged by Ability Solutions for ease-of-use. Processes are icon-driven, which makes the system easy to understand and use by all levels; from the mine manager and health and safety officer, to the shift supervisor.

In terms of streamlining productivity, empowering mobility, and ease-of-use, this solution is ground-breaking. Ability Solutions is setting a new trend for risk and process management in mines with Rokman. We are thrilled to be part of it.

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