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Technology - Environmental Management Systems Web Ware (EMSWW)

Mikunj Joshi

EMSWebWare® (EMSWW) is a web based software application that supports the EPA’s Environmental Management System (EMS) implementation. EMS Development is a very resource intensive work resulting in lower motivation to pursue one. The primary aim in developing the software was to reduce these resource requirements. Case studies have shown a reduction of up to 35% for some trial accounts.

Competing products have been loaded with features and tools not all of which render the benefits they promise.  In contrast, they sometimes become overly cumbersome and inflexible making it difficult to train yourself and others, thereby defeating the purpose of the product.  Moreover, these applications have been designed primarily for use by the private sector seeking adherence to the ISO 14001 certification standard. These software applications are typically complex, nonflexible and strictly structured, to assure that an agency follow a flow pattern specifically aimed to the ISO 14001 standard.  By making EMSWW flexible and user friendly we have tried to create a differentiation. This has been acknowledged by participants during our demonstrations and beta trials.

 EMSWW has been designed to meet the needs of federal, state, municipal and higher education public sector entities to develop and implement an EMS program. It enables an agency to develop an EMS by accessing numerous online web based software tools that include a web homepage customized to the agency; EMS formatted document templates, a document management and control tool and internal message board for effective communication. These tools help the agency create their team structures and coordinate their efforts across multiple sites and teams.   In addition, it provides features like calendars and audit trial of templates and documents which is becoming an industry standard after the SOX act.

The novel aspect of the software is that it is developed by a public facility that received direct training from EPA personnel and EMS program development and implementation consultants. This learning experience provided a means to partner with EPA and develop a software application that achieves the EMS program expectations. The software application assists an agency to strive toward ISO certification or to the less stringent EMS implementation.

In the May of this year EMSWebWare® got a boost from Triumvirate Environmental, headquatered in Somerville, MA. Triumvirate, an environmental management and services firm,  will be the first account for EMSWebWare®.  In addition, the firm has offered a $20,000 grant that will be offered to institutional buyers assisting them in their upfront fees, over the next 16 months.   For each license sold to a qualifying institutional buyer, Triumvirate will contribute $2,500 in upfront fees.

The licenses for EMSWebWare® are priced between $3,500 and $5,000 for the first year with subsequent annual maintenance fees based on the size of the account.  The web-based product is currently marketed in both a hosted and on-premise option.  For more information regarding EMSWebWare® please visit the website http://www.emswebware.com.

(This article is an extension of an article which was initially published in Lokvani about a year ago.)

(Mikunj Joshi works as a Business Systems Analyst for Fidelity Investments and holds a MS in Computer Science and a MBA and was responsible for the development of the software while a student at UMass-Lowell. )

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