THE CONTINUING CASE FOR BROWSER BASED OPERATIONS MANUALS

Browser based operations manuals, also known as electronic operations manuals (EOM), have matured in the past few years.  They are common at most large water and wastewater treatment facilities and are becoming accessible to the smaller utilities.  Proprietary software is no longer a requirement as off-the shelf products have proven to be perfectly adequate.  Thus, the cost to develop has fallen drastically and is now within the reach of pretty much every utility in the developed world.

The reasons for developing and maintaining a browser-based manual are, therefore, more compelling than ever.  Compiling a facility’s operations information into a database with an intuitive graphical operator interface has always made so much sense and still does.  All the information is available to everyone all the time.  Only the latest version is available.  Anyone can develop content.

Most facilities have a computerized maintenance management system (CMMS).  The browser-based operations manual complements the CMMS but should not attempt to repeat its functionality.  Some information may be included in both but each has its own purpose.  They may share common links in more sophisticated operations but that is not necessary for everyone.

I have been developing browser-based operations manuals for water and wastewater treatment facilities since 1999.  Back in the “bad” old days we used HTML and I would sit side by side with a programmer.  Then we made a major leap using web page development software where we integrated a nice user interface.  Many software platforms have been used over the years and at this point I am a software agnostic; whatever the client wants to use is fine with me.  I have seen some very elegant manuals developed in Microsoft SharePoint, for example.  Disclaimer – I am not a programmer nor a “computer geek”.  My computer skills are quite ordinary and quite sufficient to develop content.

I have developed entire manuals, or just content for:  the City of Atlanta, Ga, the City of Phoenix, AZ, the City of Mesa, AZ, Eli Lilly (Puerto Rico), Denver Metro, CO, Littleton-Englewood, CO, Eastern Municipal Water District, CA, the City of Riverside, CA, and the San Jose Water Company, CA.  Content development includes water and wastewater treatment, water distribution and wastewater collection.

Please feel free to contact me should you desire more information:

Jimmie A. Littrell, President

Water Opsmacon Inc.

www.wateropsmacon.comSmall AS