Inmagic Presto Success Story

Spreading the Word to Increase Workplace Safety, Minimize Risk

PFTA, a publicly funded trade association and leader in workplace health and safety education, has a collection of over 10,000 items and is implementing a digitization strategy that will allow it to widely disseminate information that ultimately helps companies fulfill the vision of workplaces without injuries, illnesses, or fatalities.

“I don’t like complicated. The DB/TextWorks-Presto combination is really functional and clean. It is easily customizable (without the cost of a custom system) so I can make changes myself—and its powerful search options have basically made the impossible possible.”

PATRICIA DEAN
Research and Information Coordinator
PFTA

Trade Association Challenges,
Inmagic Presto for DB/TextWorks Solutions

Powerful and easy customization options

Remote access for staff and network members

Reinforces association brand identity

Cost effective and vendor hosted (SaaS)

Patricia Dean is the Research and Information Coordinator for PFTA, a publicly funded trade association* and leader in workplace health and safety education. Through skills-based training, auditing, and evaluation, PFTA provides safety solutions to those who perform high-risk activities. They incorporate a research-based educational methodology in everything they do, supporting their mission to develop sector-specific partnerships, and foster the implementation of prevention solutions that provide continuous improvement in health and safety performance. Ms. Dean oversees a collection of over 10,000 items and is implementing a digitization strategy that will allow PFTA to widely disseminate information that ultimately helps companies fulfill the vision of workplaces without injuries, illnesses, or fatalities. PFTA is an evolving organization, with various functional areas that require library support to make their materials and information available to ~170 Association staff along with 800 network committee members—and through them to the industry as a whole. Originally, PFTA leveraged a custom-built library system, which became out of date and could no longer be technically supported. Ms. Dean was asked to find a new solution that had the same functionality as their custom-built system, while being cost-effective and vendor supported. After an extensive competitor review, she selected DB/TextWorks.

Beyond the Basics

With DB/TextWorks, Ms. Dean was able to fulfill the organizational mandate to develop databases that organize information from other sources in addition to the library. Her first non-library initiative was to create a database of technical projects, with the goal of finding, organizing and providing access to the many files in people’s offices. With that successfully completed, she developed other databases, including:

  • Educational videos database (and an A/V materials reservations system)
  • Current Awareness database collecting information from different sources both internally and externally, making it available and searchable

In addition to collections of internal content, Ms. Dean created databases of critical external content, often inspired by research requests. For example, the Library had a request to look at 20 years of coroner’s inquests involving persons being struck by reversing vehicles, as well as the safety recommendations pursuant to those incidents. Ms. Dean used DB/TextWorks to create a searchable Inquest Database that dramatically reduces time spent locating information found within the inquest and related materials. The Ministry of Labor publishes information related to workplace health and safety violation convictions on their website. This data doesn’t generally end up in legal literature, and the MOL only makes 2 years of content visible, which doesn’t accommodate PFTA requirements. Not only did Ms. Dean leverage DB/TextWorks to create a Ministry of Labor Court Bulletin, she used it to develop a database of all convictions related to PFTA work. Finally, she converted their Access database of workplace fatalities into a searchable Fatalities Database.

Anytime, Anywhere—with Presto!

PFTA has geographically distributed staff, including researchers. Where once it was easy for people to walk down the hall to the Library, remote access to resources via the Web became critical. Budget constraints made implementation of a Web solution impossible, until Inmagic unveiled Presto for DB/TextWorks. Per Ms. Dean, this happened at just the right time as the requirement for remote access became even more acute, and at the right price. With Presto, critical materials are now available to staff and network members via the PFTA intranet. The Fatalities, Convictions and Inquest databases can now be linked together, eliminating the need to recreate or re-key information (or to search in multiple silos), and everything looks seamless, supporting PFTA’s brand identity. The ability to attach supplemental or related information and make it accessible through a single venue—no matter where it is housed—is an enormous asset.

The pressing need for a vendor hosted solution emerged at the same time remote access became imperative, so with the implementation of Presto for DB/TextWorks, PFTA chose the software-as-a-service (SaaS) solution. The benefits of server efficiency, including upgrades and maintenance, without the need to rely on internal IT support represent a significant upside.

An Early Win

Ms. Dean says users are very impressed that she can quickly lay her hands on information they didn’t even know was available or accessible. One example came early on: “I’m looking for a recommendation from an inquest where if they’d had a safety net, it would have prevented a fatality. I need it to support a proposal for new legislation.” Ms. Dean was able to come up with the material in under 15 minutes, and states: “This was three lines in an inquest description. There is no way that I’d have ever found it if I didn’t have Presto. It basically makes the impossible, possible.” And now, with Presto’s powerful Web publishing capabilities, PFTA staff and network members can search organizational resources anytime, anywhere, through their intranet, to support them in their mission.

*Publicly funded organizations are governed by a public services agreement and cannot provide product endorsements except anonymously

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