Applus+ Entrusts DRIVE NDT with Digitalization of NDT Workflow
Applus+ Germany is one of the largest providers of non-destructive testing (NDT) services in Germany and with more than 20,000 employees in over 70 countries is one of the largest companies in the industry worldwide.
In order to cement its leading position over the longer term, Applus+ is investing in future technologies. One of the key challenges of the future is the digitalization of all NDT processes. “A key promise is that the test report of an accredited company is the last word for the professional or expert in court. This is a central and very important issue. For this, trust in the correctness of the work processes and legal recognition of freedom from defects are fundamental prerequisites. For this reason, the traceability and auditability of test results and test reports are essential. These requirements can only be ensured in the wake of digitalization,” explains Dr. Michael Neiser, CEO of Applus+ Germany. That is why Applus+ Germany has been using the NDT workflow management platform DRIVE NDT for 4 years, currently at three of its locations in Germany. “At present, 20 of our employees are operating DRIVE NDT, but we manage about 112 employees in the system,” clarifies Oliver Rosendahl, Regio Operation Manager at Applus+.
“We use DRIVE NDT for the entire service delivery process, from order creation to report generation and the archiving of test results,” states Dr. Michael Neiser. Traceability and secure backup of data play a decisive role in this. This structured way of working is at the core of DRIVE NDT. The qualification of inspectors and evaluators as well as calibrations and the maintenance statuses of devices are checked at all times, thus preventing incorrect assignment when allocating tasks. In addition, entire refineries with all components to be tested can be mapped in the software. For each test object, the history of the test procedure and previous tests can be viewed at any time.
Software must be as flexible as the demands on the company. “With DRIVE NDT, we can handle any type of job, no matter what customer segment we are serving,” says Dr. Neiser. But can a single software solution meet all the requirements of a large company like Applus+? “We are very satisfied with the service of AAP-NDT and DÜRR NDT. If a function is not available in the system, a custom feature can be created and integrated due to the modular structure of the software. In addition, special requests for the revenue module have been customized to our needs after consultation.” In this way, the system can be adapted as precisely as possible to the actual way the company works.
With DRIVE NDT, we have an audit-proof and traceable workflow for every order and every report, which is enormously important for us as well as for our customers.”
Dr. Michael Neiser, CEO of Applus+ Germany
The whole NDT industry is focused on error detection and error prevention. Anything that can be transmitted digitally is helpful in avoiding human errors. The integration of DÜRR NDT's RT imaging software D-Tect X with automatic transmission of measurement parameters and results, meets this requirement exactly and demonstrates the vision behind DRIVE NDT.
In addition to these basic benefits, there are others that result from the use of DRIVE NDT. For example, records of employee certification, medical examinations relevant for testers, and calibration and maintenance intervals of testing equipment are all maintained in DRIVE NDT. The parties concerned are thus supported in meeting all important deadlines and events. Regulatory requirements for the company, such as for a quarterly financial statement, can also be extracted from information provided by DRIVE NDT. “With real-time information, as well as the structured, documented inspection processes in DRIVE NDT, we can increase the efficiency of our company and view and evaluate our resources and information on a daily basis. In the past, such steps were performed in face-to-face meetings and even by pen on paper. With DRIVE NDT, we get a clear acceleration of information and efficiency increase. This will enable Applus+ to deliver significantly improved quality to its clients,” says CEO Dr. Neiser. In addition, it is easy to use the system on a tablet, which brings significant advantages for mobile use. Mr. Rosendahl states that since the platform has been in use, tablets have been part of the basic equipment of lab carts that operate with it.
The handling of DRIVE NDT is very intuitive and after brief familiarization the software is very easy to understand. This keeps training times short. Furthermore, new employees only have to be trained to use a single tool, not several different ones, which further reduces the training time.”
Oliver Rosendahl, Regio Operation Manager at Applus+ Germany
The market for NDT management software solutions is limited, but there are other platforms that aim to solve the problem of digitization in the NDT environment. Before finally deciding for DRIVE NDT, Applus+ checked out a number of platforms: “DRIVE NDT scored with its holistic coverage of NDT requirements. In contrast to other solutions, DRIVE NDT offers not only order processing, but also the possibility of generating inspection reports and revision history. Furthermore, DRIVE NDT is specifically designed for NDT, which is clearly reflected in its workflows,” states Dr. Neiser, explaining the decision.
Ultimately, with a platform as forward-looking as DRIVE NDT, collaboration is based on trust and a service promise that makes a long-term partnership possible. The parties involved have jointly developed this basis of trust during the cooperation and confirmed it on numerous occasions. “To date the availability of DRIVE NDT has been impeccable. We have not had a single system failure during the whole period we have used it. The service and advice are also absolutely recommendable,” praises Oliver Rosendahl. “In cases of problems or questions, support was always quickly available, helpful and solution-oriented. This has resulted in a very trusting collaboration.” This is obviously no empty flattery, because Applus+ has now undertaken to introduce DRIVE NDT at all its locations in Germany.
AAP-NDT and DÜRR NDT could hardly imagine better evidence of confidence in the quality of their software.