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“Zero Harm” to the workforce, community, and the environment


With established depots in Western Australia and Queensland, Freo Group is one of the top choices of ‘Blue Chip’ enterprises in Australia’s mining and metals industry. Its crane hire and material logistics management services have been contracted by the likes of Rio Tinto, BHP Billiton, Fortescue Metals Group, BP, and Chevron to name a few.

Since 1974, Freo Group attributes its growth to employing international best practices and processes. In 2012, it was acquired by Marmon Crane Services Inc., one of the business sectors of an international association comprising over 185 manufacturing and service businesses worth US$ 8 billion. With this acquisition, Freo is quickly building rapport with Australian energy companies with its safe, dependable, and flexible service at job sites.

The Problem

From Day One, Freo Group’s main objective has been ensuring ‘Zero Harm’ to its workforce, the community, and the environment. It has taken measures, including hiring full-time quality, health, safety, environment (QHSE) specialists, and inducting employees and contractors into workplace health and safety practices. Moreover, it has policies and detailed actions to regulate the impact of its activities, services, and processes on the environment.

In addition to ensuring safety, Freo Group focuses on delivering quality machinery and services to its clients. With more global corporations depending on its offerings, the crane hire specialist needs to maximize their reliability. Inspecting machinery and reporting results, however, was a tedious process. Not only were checks conducted on paper, changing forms to list details particular to a machine or model were not efficient.

The Solution

Freo Group contacted Makeen Technologies to help it digitize safety data management and maintenance planning. The result was a mobile forms app which enables Freo’s workforce to:

  • Reduce the time spent on inspecting assets prior to their hire and while on location

  • Submit images of every part of a crane for better documentation and decision making

  • File Safe Act Observation reports to assess safe practices across procedures, plants, and more

  • View a list of corrective actions taken based on a Safe Act Observation report

  • Conduct workplace inspections to assess and document risks faced on a site

  • Inspect different types of cranes with regards to their operations, documents, certificates, and more

  • Carry out thorough inspections of the equipment, permits, and signage at a work site

  • Check light vehicles against a pre-start checklist to ensure they are in serviceable condition

Each of the forms in Freo’s app were designed to speed up data entry. They featured drop-down menus and segmented control for quicker selection. They also allowed the upload of annotated images with each form. These images would be sent with the PDF output of submissions to enhance documentation. To further improve accountability, each form required the eSignature of users prior to submission.

The Result

The biggest advantage makeen transform offered Freo Group was cost-savings. In 2018, the company managed to save around $20,860 from 1,043 form submissions across two locations. By June 2019, the company saved an additional sum of $52,240 from 2,612 submissions.

By transforming to paperless data collection, Freo now enjoys improved productivity and more time savings. The availability of real-time data also enables better decision making, especially before sending out equipment to clients’ sites.

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