A Single Source of Constructed Data at SA Water

SA Water is owned by the South Australian Government and delivers safe and reliable water and wastewater services.

SA Water Case Study

South Australian Government delivers safe and reliable water and wastewater services.

Providing world-class water services and tracing its roots back to 1856, SA Water manages more than $13 billion of assets to deliver water and wastewater services to more than 1.7 million people across South Australia. Engineering drawings are at the core of managing these assets, with more than 300,000 drawings accessed and maintained in the operation of the organisation.

The Engineering Drawing Management System (EDMS) manages As Constructed information in two formats – the (computer-aided design) CAD file allows controlled drawing modification and an automatically-generated or submitted PDF functions as an authorised record of a snapshot in time. The PDF is readily distributable and easily accessible on the mobile devices used by field staff.

The requirements for a new EDMS included the ability to link to assets in Maximo, to enable searching by asset. Challenges included the storage of documents on Windows shares, a history of focusing on PDF renditions rather than native drawings, data consistency, and a need for clarity around compliance, document ownership and duplication.

EDMS Design, Planning & Implementation

Meridian was selected as the EDMS to facilitate the effective management of asset and project drawings and to integrate with existing business systems, such as Maximo. The Onset ‘As Built Portal’, is fully integrated with Meridian on-premise and represents a critical EDMS component for document transfer with external contractors.

The EDMS Solution Design kicked off with the Onset implementation team on site for Solution Design workshops with business stakeholders. After agreeing on an architecture comprising two staging environments, in addition to production, the configuration quickly progressed to the test environment for training and User Acceptance Testing (UAT).

With tailored training guides, Onset assisted with half-day training workshops to provide hands-on interaction. SA Water staff at Berri, Mount Barker, South Para Reservoir, Port Lincoln, Crystal Brook, Mount Gambier and Murray Bridge participated in the EDMS training and contributed valuable feedback towards the final configuration.

Work commenced on the analysis of the documents and metadata, with cleansing and transformation activities migrating more than 325,000 drawings after the identification of versions and duplicates.

Linking Project Design & Asset Management

Project folders in Meridian are linked to the ‘As Built Portal’ to provide access to external contractors. As well as having access to PDF masters (as-built) in Meridian, authenticated contractors can upload drawing book-in packages that proceed through validation rules with automated status messaging. The automated validation of drawing metadata against established criteria ensures data integrity and reduces the workload of document controllers.

After validation, project drawings are reviewed by the SA Water design teams during a configurable workflow that releases content to the Meridian Masters area as a permanent as-built record and single source of truth.

Field Staff

Another key requirement provided was the delivery of engineering drawings to field staff via their mobile device. With options including the Meridian mobile app and the Explorer web client, the web interface was selected for tablets and laptops. Explorer provides commenting and mark-up, including the upload of attachments such as digital photographs for the capture of site information.

Business Benefits

Meridian provides several benefits to the organisation, including enabling an efficient and accessible single source of information for all relevant teams; managed storage of CAD files; and improved ability to search and locate drawings.

System Integrations

The Maximo asset hierarchy, incorporating asset IDs and descriptions, is synchronised to Meridian and used in the document naming convention for the creation of new drawings.

Continuous Improvement

With rapid adoption of the new EDMS after go-live, new projects extended functionality to include concept and temporary project drawings, as well as operation and maintenance manuals and ‘Safety in Design’ documentation.
Investigation continues into the use of Building Information Modelling (BIM), examining the benefits of adopting a BIM based approach for the management of asset data and consolidation to a ‘Master Model’ for the asset lifecycle.

In Summary

Committed support from all parties resulted in a smooth implementation, taking seven months from scoping to go-live.
Tailored training delivered in SA Water’s offices and depots around regional South Australia resulted in a high level of engagement from all stakeholders.
External contractors were initially brought on board through a number of brief workshops, while additional contractors continue to be added as required.
“It’s vital to have an efficient and accessible single source of as constructed data for our capital delivery, operations, engineering and asset management teams, to help us to effectively serve our customers.”

Paul Hawthorne – Digital Technology Specialist

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