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An interview with Paul Gilbride, Business Solutions Practice Director, Evros Technology
Last week, we welcomed Paul Gilbride and his team from Evros Technology to One Microsoft Place for a fantastic session. Based in Dublin, Evros is digitally transforming organisations of all shapes and sizes using the Microsoft Power Platform and PowerApps.
The Microsoft Power Platform combines the robust power of PowerApps, PowerBI, and Microsoft Flow into one powerful business application platform – providing quick and easy app building and data insights.
The brilliant work being carried out by Evros was duly rewarded at Inspire 2019, Microsoft’s annual partner event in Las Vegas, as it won the Microsoft Ireland Power Platform Partner Award for 2019 – a tremendous and well-deserved achievement.
After our session with Evros last week, I was lucky enough to get some additional time with Paul to talk to him about why he is so passionate about the Microsoft Power Platform and get his views on the value it can deliver for businesses.
So, Paul, what are the main benefits your team are seeing when they use the Microsoft Power Platform?
The main thing that struck us is that it allows you to develop twice as fast as traditional methods. The team in Evros Labs are accelerating even further with PowerApps Templates, Custom Components and the exciting launch of the new App Store this year. The team’s mission is “to empower every organisation we engage with, to do more, with powerfully innovative apps”.
Digital disruption and transformation can be daunting. How does a customer get started? Our customers were looking for easier and more efficient ways to solve their business challenges. It is for this reason that we started Evros Labs. Our customers were looking for easier and more efficient ways to solve their business challenges. Rather than simply follow the waterfall delivery model (requirements-build-test), we proposed a more agile approach.
Supported by our extensive technology vendor partnerships with Microsoft, we develop solutions quickly through “rapid prototyping” and low code application builds.
Keen to build upon our growing portfolio of disruptive industry solutions, the Evros development team established the Evros Labs Framework to streamline customer engagements and deliver business apps very quickly.
The Evros Labs vision is simple: We’re making customers experience transformation that is achievable for all Irish businesses. Evros Labs elevates everyday business workflows through the development of customised, intelligent and streamlined solutions that not only advance manual processes but deliver valuable data analysis and insight into their business.
Our low-cost, high-turnaround incubator model builds and tests an app solution in a truly collaborative manner with our customers. We gain the developmental insight and experience of the test model, while our customer gains a fully-customised enterprise app that can streamline a once manual process. The outcome for Evros Labs? Our customers can develop strategic plans and make real-time informed decisions. Emerging technologies are changing industry as we know it. Evros Labs is here to help companies experience real and rapid change.
What are the types of issues you are coming across and the kind of results you are seeing?
There are a few examples that come to mind. One good example is that of a global pharmaceutical company we recently worked with. Its safety personnel had to carry clipboards to capture health hazards, issue clean requests and work orders with pen and paper. We then developed the FDA Clean PowerApp – a solution that performs three tasks via one app. The PowerApp uses QR Codes to denote an incident area, snaps images of issues and kicks-off workflow for maintenance staff. The incident tracking is done by PowerBI on-screen in a facilities office.
Now, time to resolution has sped up by 75% and incidents have reduced by 25% due to data insights provided by the new app. Over 20,000 pieces of paper have been reduced from one location in Ireland alone. The app is due to rollout globally in 2020.
Another good example would be an app we developed recently for a global mining company. It had been using a paper form to record data from 20 vehicle checks, with these checks having to take place four times a day. This was a very onerous task with no real-time insights and significant data entry on the backend.
For this, we developed the Vehicle Check PowerApp – an app that captures meter readings and vehicle information. The information kicks-off workflow and provides insights directly to administrative staff in office via a monitor with PowerBI reporting.
In 2018, over 40,000 pieces of paper were used to track every vehicle in the Irish branch. Now this is managed by three tablets using one PowerApp. This new app has saved 48 days per year on data entry.
A side benefit, financially, was around “servicing” triggers as real-time insights have ensured vehicles stay in optimal condition for longer.
A final example I’d like to mention is an app we developed with a large healthcare organisation. Previously, requests for technology (e.g. VMs, compute, CPU, etc.) were made via excel. 20 PMs submitted one excel per project request. Some weeks, over 50 Excel sheets were submitted for approval and administration. One person sorted these requests for action each week.
Now, they use the PM Hosting PowerApp – all 20 PMs now submit requests via an app which has automatic workflows ready to run in the background. Tasks are created in PLANNER and communications happen via MS TEAMS on all projects. This solution is an amazing example of using the Office365 and Azure cloud to solve a specific business problem – this project was finished three times faster than by custom coding.
With this new tool, close to 100 Days a year are saved on data entry. Also, faster approval times and more efficient project flow have returned massive value to the business.