The Data Value Less Talked About: Excellent Customer Service

For many organisations around the world, the most valuable asset in the business is data.

But when it comes to managing their most valuable asset, history shows that there are a number of typical issues and hurdles that arise.

These issues can include:

  • Maintaining consistency, versions and data flow via control mechanisms
  • Navigating complicated data entry systems
  • Sifting through fragmented data
  • Managing multiple sites or projects, particularly in remote areas, and
  • Dealing with knowledge gaps over a project life cycle due to high staff turnover.

When a mine site, environemental group or junior explorer sets out to get their data sorted, there’s one more issue they need to consider.

What type of customer service will they get from their data capture and data management provider?

 

The risks of less optimal service delivery 

Buying a product vs a service

 When appointing a data management provider, many business leaders don’t realise that they’re in fact only buying or renting the use of the product. Important and valuable support services may not be included and they’re unaware at the time how critical the support services are. This means they’re left with a product with potentially costly training and support for the set up and  ongoing management of the system.

Lock in contracts

 When contracts are locked in without the services mapped out, it can be very difficult to get out of the contract to move to a provider which delivers the services you need.

Visibility of fee structures

 If customer service isn’t built into your agreement upfront and you find that you need more support than was projected, it’s likely you’ll be paying extra for it. Transparency is critical and no one wants bill shock.

Slow response times

If data is one of the most valuable assets of a business, then support services need to be fast. If your provider has slow response times to questions or issues, there’s a negative impact to your business operations.

Rigid support structures

You may need a lot of support or you may just need a little bit of support. Scalability and flexibility is key. If the services you receive are rigid and not allowing for your unique circumstances, it may mean you’re achieving a less optimal outcome for your business operations by being forced into someone else’s box.

 

The benefits of excellent customer service

Deeper understanding of your needs

 Excellent customer service means having access to approachable, knowledgeable and patient providers who deeply understand the issues your organisation faces and has the experience to provide meaningful solutions.

Quick response times

 Accurate and immediate data is critical – that’s why the hallmark of excellent customer service is in delivering fast response times with solutions that can quickly eradicate any problems. When something goes wrong, you need someone you can call who can fix it quickly.

Flexible

 Every organisation is different and has a unique set of needs, infrastructure, people and experience. That’s why customer service that is flexible and can adapt to changing needs is paramount.

Reliable

 Reliability is key to excellent customer service. Data accuracy depends on it, which means your bottom line depends on it.

The quality of customer service can make all the difference

 Here at Expedio, delivering accurate, reliable and immediate data for you using our highly innovative Toolbox is our priority. Doing so with superior customer service is what sets us apart from the rest.

Don’t just take our word for it. Discover how we’ve delivered value and excellent customer service for a wide range of other businesses.

Data intelligence, integration and new technology are changing the mining industry

Data intelligence, integration and new technology such as advanced robotics are changing the mining industry.

Data intelligence

In an attempt to preserve profit margins in a bleak market, mining giants such as BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto have began employing automated drills and driverless trucks to assist with production. Previously, Business Review Australia reported how Rio Tinto has begun using drones to help its mining efforts.

As smaller mining companies have been forced to close due to the 28 per cent productivity collapse over the past 10 years, the new technology helped Rio Tinto reduce costs by eight per cent since 2013, even though the company increased output by five per cent.

As the demand for iron ore in China — the world’s largest user — continues to slow, price will most likely fall with it as major suppliers expand output by using lower-cost reserves. The use of autonomous machines will see the top four mining companies have their global market increase from 64 per cent in 2010 up to 79 per cent in 2018.

When Rio Tinto released its “Mine of the Future” program back in 2008, commodity prices were rising to record highs. The goal was to efficiently use more autonomous technology to access more iron ore while improving safety for employees.

After using just 10 driverless trucks in 2012, Rio has now expanded to 66. These vehicles can run all day without a driver who needs to take lunch or bathroom breaks.

According to Caterpillar chief engineer of mining technology Michael Murphy, autonomous vehicles can save over 500 work hours a year since one worker can monitor as many as 50 driverless trucks.

Autonomous drills in underground mines are even more profitable, as employees using normal equipment not only take significant time walking from the opening to the work site, but are operating in dangerous working conditions as well.

And the rest of the mining industry is catching on. According to a survey by International Data Corp., about 69 per cent of 190 mining companies are considering remote-control equipment, while 29 per cent are considering an increased use of robotics.

Whether we like it or not, machines are becoming more and more prevalent in today’s world.

Original article by Eric Harding of Australia Business Review, view original article here

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Is the worst over?

Is the worst over?

BoomCrashClock

Resource stocks have been rallying in recent weeks, with miners across all sectors – even the bottom end – enjoying gains.

Australia’s largest resource stock, BHP Billiton, hit a 2016 high today by rising more than $A20 – quite impressive when you consider the stock was threatening to fall below $14 in January.

While gold players have come off the boil, with many reaching 2016 (or in some cases, all-time) highs last month, almost all are much higher now than their 2015 closing prices.

Morgans analyst Adrian Prendergast noted this was the second re-rating event in resources to occur so far this year.

“The injection of positive sentiment has been enough to help commodity prices stabilise, which in turn we expect will be enough to pull us out of the downgrade cycle that has been undermining confidence in resources,” he said.

Prendergast noted that the improvement in some commodities had caught many by surprise.

Many thought the gold price was destined to dip below $US1000 an ounce this year, and there was almost no one who would have tipped an iron ore price of $60/t.

“We expect sentiment had become weak to such an extent that we are now likely to see a widespread ‘relief rally’ unfold across the sector, which could continue in fits and spurts throughout the remainder of 2016 carrying commodities to more sustainable (higher) levels.”

ANZ Research noted last week that while commodities had been one of the best-performing asset classes this year, the issue of oversupply remained, particularly in iron ore and coal.

“Whether commodity markets continue to move higher from here or suffer a reversal will be dependent on supply,” ANZ said.

“The recent rally raises the risk of previously curtailed supply being reactivated. In markets such as industrial metals, margins are improving quickly enough to see that occur in the short term.

“Whatever the case, the sustainability of this current rally will be reliant on how each supply side of the market reacts over the coming months.”

Morgans believes that now is the time for investors to “dip your toe back into the sector”.

It seems that many are, with positive early signs emerging across the sector.

MNN has noticed a substantial pick-up in the quantum and value of capital raisings, and in a further positive sign, many have been oversubscribed.

Most notably was Pilbara Minerals’ $A100 million raising, while Western Areas raised $70 million.

Gold developer Gascoyne Resources secured $15 million, while West African Resources was “swamped” with investor interest after a run of high-grade results, last week raising $12 million.

To earlier stage projects, Salt Lake Potash boosted its $5.2 million raising to $8.4 million on high investor interest, while Hastings Technology Metals scored $9.6 million off the back of a prefeasibility study.

At the much smaller end, raisings by Core Exploration, St George Mining, Helix Resources, Tyranna Resources, WPG Resources, and Liontown Resources were oversubscribed.

All of these signs have led Lion Selection’s Hedley Widdup to declare the time as 5 o’clock on the firm’s investment clock.

“The clock has moved from 4.30 in late 2015 to 5 o’clock now in reflection of improved liquidity for miners,” he told MNN.

“This time is just before the boom starts to take place, so we are saying the stage is set.”

Widdup said the cycle had bottomed.

“Investors broadly have changed their view toward miners, and the realisations that miners are 1) cheap and 2) probably have very little downside on price, have now set in,” he said.

“The conclusion is not centred on the longevity of the recent rally – the rally is only an important piece of evidence.

“Capitulation is over, and strong cash generation and growth appetite in gold is likely to lead to more balance sheet-funded M&A.”

Original article by Kristie Batten of MiningNews.net view the original article here

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Exports Surge on the back of Mining Technology

Exports Surge on the Back of Mining Technology

mining technology

Mining has long been thought of as a business of shovels and sweat, but in reality it is now driven by advanced mining technology and sophisticated software. Resources-linked technology is also one of the great unsung export success stories. At present, about 60 per cent of the mining software used around the world originates in Australia.

According to an Austrade report, “Mining Software and Related Technologies”, exploration and mining software (EMS) generates more than $600 million a year from mining-related revenues, more than $240 million of exports, and directly employs more than 2500 people.

The size and type of EMS firms varies, with 100 companies in the sector, ranging in size from less than $1 million to more than $100 million in annual sales. The sector is concentrated in Western Australia (45 per cent of businesses) and Queensland (30 per cent).

Australia is seen as a world leader in this field,” says Simon Ratcliffe, product development director of Maptek, an Australian-based international company. “Australians have a can-do attitude and the capacity to think across traditional borders rather than in niches, and that is very important for global miners.”

Original article by Derek Parker of the Financial Review view the full article here

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Expedio Top Tip – Data Capture

Data Capture

Expedio’s Top Tip for March better Data Capture:

reusable data jigsaw data capture

Data capture is one of the most important processes in data management. Getting it right at the point of capture will negate many errors before they become a big problem further down the process stream.

A data capture tool should enforce strict standards on a user to only allow valid data to be entered. For example:

  • Enforce company codes – pick lists to fields to ensure adherence to company logging standards and avoid a situation of people creating their own geology codes.
  • Built in validation rules to allow worksheet checks, this provides the ability to define contextual checking of data within and across multiple worksheets. Validations will allow you to check for:
    • Overlapping or missing intervals
    • Invalid dip/azimuth/grid values
    • End depth checking
    • Invalid sample types or groups
    • Contextual or logical checking across data columns
  • Manage data flow – only allowing a user to export data once from a logging tool to avoid a double up in data in the production database and creating an issue of multiple data sets. Which data set is correct?

OCRIS Mobile allows for all of this and more, OCRIS Mobile has an unbeatable range of features combined with rock-solid data validation and management. OCRIS Mobile is the only choice if you want fast, accurate and dependable exploration or mining logging in the field.

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OCRIS Mobile 3.1.8 Release

OCRIS Mobile 3.1.8 releaseOCRIS mobile

OCRIS Mobile 3.1.8 release is here, providing great new user functionality and improved development to the database engine;

  • The addition of a Site list filter in the selection pane. This allows the user the ability to filter when Site lists become too large.

site list filter

  • Updated the application status text, so that users can immediately see which logger is active.
  • Updated the underlying SQLite engine, this will increase the performance of the underlying database engine by at least 60%.
  • Minor bug fixes.

Learn more about OCRIS here or view a short demonstration video below.

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Expedio Top Tip – Data Handling

Data Handling

Expedio Top Tip for February better Data Handling:

Data Handling

Poor Data Handling procedures can lead to loss of data, money and time. This can put a resource project under huge risk of failure. Companies are happy to spend millions of dollars on drilling and lab test work, but lack when it comes to storing the data it returns.

Data Handling problems can be attributed to these main factors;

  • Break down in data flow procedures;
    • loading the same data files several times
    • field collected data and lab results not making it back to the main office and the master data set
  • Non centralised data;
    • multiple copies of the data/database, users and managers working on separate copies of the data. Who has the most recent and up to date version?
  • Data being stored on an unsecure/non backed up system;
    • what would happen if the computer/server dies, do you lose millions of dollars worth of data

Click here to learn more on how Expedio’s OCRIS Logix processes can help your project and data management procedures.