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Big data

  • SIMA
- Posted: September 20, 2018
By Brian Birch, CAE


As with any major business process, data management for service verification requires strong focus and attention to detail. Creating a systematic approach and self-auditing process for essential policies and procedures is vital to long-term effectiveness, quality, legality and usefulness of the data you collect. 

Often, your data will come from many sources, so the visual above is designed as a sample process map. Train your team on each element and why it matters to the health of your company. Understanding the entire ecosystem of service data is critical to becoming a best-in-class snow verification organization.

Service data/notes. Document services and situations out in the field (via paper or electronic) by crews. Essential data collected can be used for billing, risk management, and production improvements.

Invoices/billing. Verification of service data is essential documentation for legal protection and timely billing and payment.

Photo/videos. This is time-stamped, irrefutable evidence of service and/or specific variables or conditions for liability protection and service verification.

GPS data. This provides tangible benefits related to risk, route and fleet management.
Customer reporting requirements. Many larger/retail customers are building proprietary apps or using third-party software vendors to capture service documentation from their service providers.

Third-party weather verification. This information is critical for bidding and is an industry best practice for verification of snowfall totals and other critical, geo-specific weather information.
IVR/call center. Data transferred or entered into these types of systems is critical verification data that should be accessible and available to your company. 

Email. Customers requesting additional or cessation of services, complaints and other email instructions constitute the “in-writing” portion of many contract stipulations and should be governed by the same principles as other verification information. 
Tear & Teach Pullout
The September Tear & Teach offers a checklist for site engineering best practices, which is a key first step in the verification process. Download it here
Brian Birch is chief operating officer of SIMA. Contact him at
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