The University of Wollongong – Centralising information and streamlining contractor management

Background

The University of Wollongong (UOW), founded in 1951, currently employs over 2470 full time staff members and has over 30,516 students enrolled. In 2013, UOW was ranked in the top 2% of universities worldwide, offering an impressive 476 degrees over campuses in 9 different locations.

The Challenge

UOW were looking for a contractor management solution to centralise their contractor Work Health & Safety information and needed an automated way to monitor contractor insurances and licences. All contractors also required consistent induction training that complied with the Work Health and Safety Act 2011 (NSW) and self-insurance requirements.

Previously, UOW were using a manual process for evaluating and inducting contractors. This process was performed to varying degrees across the 9 different campuses and involved members of UOW staff manually collecting WHS documentation, insurances and licences from contractors. This manual paper-based system only stored contractor details locally which meant that over-arching oversight was not achieved.  UOW needed a new process that could be streamlined and accessible across all campus sites.

The ideal contractor management solution needed to fulfil the following requirements:

  • be an Australian based vendor
  • provide daily support for use of the system to both UOW employees and contractors
  • offer a UOW branded portal
  • have strength in both contractor compliance and online training
  • be a cost effective solution (for both set-up fees and annual fees), and
  • allow system configuration based on UOW needs.

One of UOW’s major pain points for implementing a new solution was agreeing on what the system would realistically cover. Some members of the UOW team had some unrealistic expectations on what the system should be able to deliver. Their expectations needed to be managed to ensure that they would not experience any disappointment upon applying a new system to help encourage organisation-wide buy-in.

The Solution

e3Learning was selected to implement an online contractor management solution for UOW. e3’s contractor management solution, an offering called SitePass, was found to meet all of UOW’s criteria.

Setting up SitePass for UOW was a straightforward process. A UOW branded portal was created as the central point for all contractors and administrators. Contractors are able to self-register and upload all of their licences and qualifications onto an individual profile. This information is then verified by the relevant UOW representative to ensure that the contractor is eligible to carry out work at the University.

UOW’s SitePass implementation also includes a custom card printing service. Once a contractor has been verified, the individual is issued with a UOW-branded induction card. Each card has an individual QR code printed on it which enables the contractor to be easily identified and signed in on site.

e3 also assisted UOW in creating two custom-developed contractor induction online training courses. The primary course is automatically assigned to all contractors that register on SitePass. UOW administrators can also assign additional modules based on the type of work a contractor is performing. When a contractor logs in to the central portal, they are able to access the online induction courses assigned to them, allowing them to complete their online training before they even step on site to work. This ensures that all contractors, no matter what campus they are working at, have a consistent induction training process which includes only the training relevant to the work they are performing.

UOW’s strong branding was able to be replicated on its online portal and throughout the course content. The project also included several other custom features, including custom email notifications, a custom work health and safety questionnaire and the integrated ability to track any external training within the SitePass central system.

The Result

The relationship between e3Learning and UOW has been beneficial for both parties. UOW have been instrumental in the product development of the SitePass solution. Having taken on specific feedback provided by the University, e3 will be further implementing a ‘performance management of contractors’ function, as well as the ability to create additional permissions for internal users into the SitePass contractor management system.

The SitePass solution has ensured that UOW maintains its commitment to the safety and quality of work that takes place at all 9 of its campuses.

This solution gives UOW a greater oversight of their contractors no matter which campus location they are in. The system is currently being used by 61 separate contracting companies to UOW and 179 individual users.

Upon the initial setup of the SitePass system, there was some resistance from members of staff and contractors to move into a new process. This was quickly remedied once the system and its benefits were properly understood by all users. UOW have been particularly impressed by e3’s support team who have been able to assist with any questions and queries that any of the UOW employees or contractors might have.

Overall, UOW has found the SitePass solution, provided by e3 to be an excellent fit to their needs in this area.

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