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30 Aug 2023 - Technology - EnviroSys

Is your environmental database an enabler or a burden?

Data management has always been a hot topic for environmental professionals. Now organisations are catching up. Environmental data management systems (EDMS) have finally exited the “nice to have” category and are relied upon for compliance and governance reporting. The next hill to climb is ensuring your EDMS is delivering advantages to your business and not being a hindrance to getting things done. Is your environmental data management software up for the challenge?  

It’s natural for the first priority to be mitigating the risk of non-compliance. While you breathe easy about regulators and raising the ire of stakeholders, your job may still require a lot of manual handling and manipulation of data. As EDMSs evolve, it’s worth evaluating your current data handling processes to ensure you’re getting optimal value for your organisation. 

Everything, from everywhere, all at once 

Your environmental database software should include all data types from all sources of your environmental monitoring programs. There’s no reason to compromise on this point. If your current solution requires manual handling, or excludes certain kinds of data, the margin for human error goes up exponentially. As the importance of environmental data grows in your business, the amount of effort required to stay compliant will also increase dramatically.    

Here’s what to look for in an environmental database software:  

  • Does your EDMS support both real-time and analytical results data within the same system? Ensure your EDMS supports both real-time and analytical results data within the same system. If you’re using multiple software products to accommodate different source data, your EDMS is not futureproofed. At some point one of the systems may fall behind in support and your ability to stay compliant will be at risk.  
  • If you do have real-time and analytical data available, is it segregated across systems? You’ll know if your EDMS has been “Frankensteined” together when it feels like you’re using two completely different systems. You should expect to have a seamless interface.   
  • Are you able to manage the data sources required for ESG reporting in one piece of technology? One of the biggest challenges of environmental data management is ensuring you’re able to monitor and report on all your compliance obligations. You do not want a variety of systems to manage the growing list of data sources required for environmental reporting. If you’re using multiple software products to get the job done, it’s a sign your data handling isn’t providing the best value to your business.  
  •  What is the origin story of your environmental data management software? Not all started as complete solutions. Many were designed for a particular data type, like water or air quality. They were later bent into shape or cobbled together to manage other data types such as soil chemistry or emissions. A solution that’s going to provide the most competitive advantage will have the granularity needed to support multiple data types in a standardised way. 

No data left behind 

High quality environmental database software accommodates all metadata and related information, such as instrument calibration, in a single repository. Ensure everything you need for effective decision-making is captured and validated, including depth measurements, original observations and device data. Environmental professionals are currently facing inconsistencies about the quality and usability of information stored. 

  • Some EDMSs inhibit organisations from having all their data in one spot. This defeats the purpose of having an EDMS, which should be your single source of truth for ALL your environmental data.  
  • Loading environmental data into your EDMS should be easy and straightforward. You should not have to rely on manual processes or additional software or modules to extract or import data.  
  • The same applies for validation and remediation of incorrect data. You should be able to correct data directly in your EDMS while maintaining a complete audit trail. 

Don’t let your environmental database be outperformed by a spreadsheet 

If a spreadsheet can store the information you need, your environmental database should be able to do it, as well. Relying on a spreadsheet to store and back up your business-critical information is not best practice, to say the least.  

What should environmental professionals expect of their environmental database? EnviroSys focuses on giving businesses a competitive advantage in the way they manage data. This entails providing a single source of truth for all your environmental data, with a helicopter view to give you and your business confidence you’re meeting all your compliance obligations. EnviroSys was designed with these principles in mind.  

Why EnviroSys? 

EnviroSys is a quality and compliance-focused software solution that can efficiently capture, validate, monitor, analyse and report any type of environmentally-related data.  

The benefits to using EnviroSys are: 

  • Data is stored in one spot, using the same management, analysis and reporting tools for a seamless user experience.  
  • Built from the ground up, EnviroSys can manage any and all types of environmental data. It’s enterprise level software acting as a central data repository. Environmental professionals gain accessibility, transparency and security of data.  
  • Using one software solution will eliminate having to deal with multiple software vendors for service and support. 
  • EnviroSys uses a Data File Protocol (DFP) which defines a flexible standard to import data and eliminates manual reformatting and manipulation. If data complies with the protocol, then it is loaded automatically. Users can save a huge amount of time by using EnviroSys’ smart, automated data loading functionality. 

If you can’t easily answer the question “Are we compliant?”, your environmental data management is letting you down. If you can’t quickly produce accurate reports that are trusted throughout your organisation, your EDMS is not providing you the advantage you need to stay competitive in a world focused on ESG, climate change, and corporate responsibility to effect change.  

Find out more at the EnviroSys product page or contact the acQuire team to learn how you can get better insight from your environmental data and gain a competitive advantage for your business today.

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