Improving data processing: An informed business decision for Crown Plus


Crown Recycling was set up in 2015 to work in the Highways market undertaking filter drain recycling and civil engineering schemes. The Directors, Gary Price and Paul Conner, wanted to expand the business into surveying and technical services.

Their goal was to undertake Highways Agency Drainage Data Management System surveys (HADDMS). The HADDMS system is principally presents Highways England with a national database for all highways assets.

The Challenge

Crown Recycling needed to carry out the Highways work to the HADDMS specification with Crown capturing all of the drainage attributes. This GPS data is then merged with the Wincan data files that are produced from undertaking CCTV surveys; the CCTV surveys provide a record on the condition of an asset. The information is then checked by Crown Recycling data analysts before being uploaded onto HADDMS. Once it has passed all of the HADDMS checks shape files are then produced with surface features added by Crown Recycling’s CAD technicians who produce the required drawings for any scheme.

“The challenge we had was to identify a suitable service provider to provide best advice as to what hardware and software we would require so to undertake the relevant surveys to the required accuracy and detail.”

"The support from MGISS has been great. They have been extremely helpful, honest and frank which is refreshing!"

The Solution

Crown Recycling consulted with MGISS who listened to the requirements and recommended the Panasonic ToughPad FZ-M1 with the SP80 and GeoGrafi-M software.

Gary Price said:

“We knew what we needed by way of accuracy and capabilities to achieve HADDMS survey standards and that we could have used Total Stations to capture the required information. However, we felt that the use of total stations may limit our capabilities on highways schemes. We therefore made an informed decision to purchase the SP80 GPS equipment and associated software as we felt that this enabled us to have an element of flexibility in respect to our planned expansion beyond undertaking HADDMS surveys.”

The Spectra Precision SP80 is a survey grade GNSS Antenna, accurate within 1cm. The ergonomic design, web user interface, and unlimited operating time make the SP80 extremely versatile.

“We find that the accuracy of the SP80 works well with the Panasonic ToughPad. Even in extremely poor conditions the toughpad works extremely well as the touch screens can be operated using the MGISS stylus pens.”

The Results

Just months after implementing the new solution into the business Gary believes the changes have enabled the company to branch into an area of business that they couldn’t do before. “It’s a new business stream essentially and it has enabled us to open up a new market for ourselves therefore allowing us to expand the company’s capabilities and workforce.” He says.

“The equipment has allowed us to secure work on the current tranche of Highways England Managed Motorway Schemes. We have just handed over data that will be used by the Consulting Engineering teams to design the planned upgrades of the M62, M40, M42, A1M and M25.”

“We now also have the capability to do all the necessary data processing to meet the HADDMS requirements. We also now have a CAD dept that undertakes the production of CAD drawings which is an output required by many clients as a pictorial representation electronically of what we’ve actually surveyed on site.”

“We employed 2 experienced surveyors and they helped to upskill some of our other site staff who had never worked in the technical surveying field. We essentially took them off the tools and gave them four or five days on the job training and we’re finding that four months down the line they have been upskilled to the level where they are able to complete the same work as the surveyors are. Everyone is multiskilled and well-rounded which offers them ore job security as well.”

“The support from MGISS has been great. They have been extremely helpful, honest and frank which is refreshing! When we’ve need to enhance the level of resource for a short period and must mobilise additional surveying resources to a scheme, we have been able to rent equipment directly from MGISS and within 48 hours of the initial request the equipment is on site. This has allowed us to put multiple teams on schemes across the country where very short mobilisation times are required. It’s hugely beneficial to have that flexibility.”

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