Education – MEQA
My team and I had been working with other organizations in our attempt to put together an eMonitoring system that worked perfectly for our organization’s education programmes in 3 national offices (Cambodia, Nepal and Bangladesh). With the scale of the work in our World Vision National Offices, we needed to not only develop digital observation tools, but also program instant feedback functionalities on the app itself. This would enable the monitors to provide and prioritize the coaching points to facilitators and teachers in a way that transformed a monitoring visit to one of mentorship, rather than simply data extraction.
It was not until we started working with SMAP, specifically with Neil Penman, that all our eMonitoring wishes came to life. What took us months to discuss and deliver with others, took Neil a week. He setup our ODK forms and provided extra features based on the specific needs of our educational programme. Even after setting things up, he is also supportive of how we take ownership of the administration.
Above all things, it is this support that I appreciate the most from Neil — the instant support and assurance that he would know the answer (or that if he didn’t know the answer, he would get back to you within a couple of hours). An additional factor is that we had linked SMAP to PowerBi in order to provide semi-real time visualization of the data analysis. Even in this step, Neil also helped us in figuring out how the connections worked when we came across kinks. Our eMonitoring system, MEQA as we call it, is now in such a state that we feel confident to roll-out the system to other National Offices as well.
Technical Advisor – Education,
World Vision International
FieldTask was mentioned in the following paper Factors Affecting Rehabilitation of Food Security: A Study in Earthquake – Affected Districts in Nepal by Dhruba Raj Ghimire.
I ran a two day advanced data collection training course at HERD, Kathmandu. They subsequently wrote a blog post about the course.
Calgary Water Board
Calgary suffered its worst flood in almost 100 years in 2013, putting most of our downtown underwater.
In this disaster, the majority of the inner city had no power, and all our municipal networks were down for many days. None of our existing technology (mobile, or desktop) was connected, or functioning. After many days, we eventually gained partial network functionality, but still none of our inspection or mapping software worked.
Shortly afterwards, we began using Smap to inspect critical flood-related infrastructure as a best-practice. Smap was chosen because it is cross-compatible with any device, and 100% functional offline, while still offering all the connectivity features of other, far more expensive networked inspection software.
In the event of another natural disaster, this system allows us to continue to operate and collect high-quality critical inspection data regardless of network update or connectivity.
In addition, we found it vastly simpler to train our staff with this tool. It could literally be deployed in minutes, while more extensive training was often required to understand other proprietary tools.
We continue to use Smap today, and Neil has continued to kindly help us with it as needed. I implemented this inspection system for my group at the time. I no longer work in the area but they continue to use the software despite regular sales pitches from proprietary vendors. None of them have been able to offer the same level of features, reliability, cost-effectiveness, and cross-compatability. Our corporation does not use the software for its price. We chose it, and continue to use it, for the functionality.
It is simply put, a best-of-breed tool from a practicality standpoint, and absolutely the most cost-effective.
The best part about it, however, is working with Neil, and his community-driven, agile framework for software development that has allowed Smap to evolve in ways that have been highly relevant to our needs.
Solomon Islands Health Facility Costing Study – 2015
The data collection for this study took place in early 2014 using a Smap server and mobile phones.
Child Protection in Crisis
9th July 2015
The child protection in crisis learning network has posted 2 photographs of a data collection project in Cambodia that uses Smap. I’m working on this project with Columbia University.
In the second photo I can only see pen and paper but the phones are definitely involved in this somewhere.
Floods in Solomon Islands
Solomon Star News
21st April 2014
Using Smap in Mozambique
NO Monitoring and Evaluation Officer
October 20th 2013
Household Vulnerability and Resilience to Economic Shocks