UNOPS / UNMAS / Somalia - Developing an android application to help the Somalian police and military personnel in collecting information about and reporting IED incidents.
To improve the reporting of improvised explosive device (IED) incidents in Somalia, the UNOPS sought to create an Android application, to help police and military personnel in collecting information about and reporting IED incidents. Many developing countries across the globe with IED threats have limited access to computers. Therefore, creating and submitting reports on IED incidents were also limited. However, many police and military personnel have Android-based smartphones. Hence, there was a need to provide a user-friendly mobile application for police and military personnel use, to collect information and report on IED incidents in Somalia.
Considering this, in 2017, UNOPS contracted Bewsys to design and develop a multi-language support mobile Android application. In scoping the application’s requirements, the Bewsys consulting team in collaboration with the United Nations Mine Action Service (UNMAS) programmatic team, considered the best features to implement in the design process. The application was custom-built on the registration, case management, document library, report generation, system administration, and integrated content management modules of the Bewsys Regulatory MIS.
The technical team designed and developed a user-friendly mobile application that was made to function without internet connectivity. Once the device was connected to the internet, reports and/or photographs captured offline, were automatically sent to a designated email address. For the sake of inclusivity, the application was created in English, French, Arabic, Farsi, and Kurdish language versions.
To make it easy for police and military personnel to collect relevant data about IED incidents, the application was designed to include simple drop-down menus, selection options, and text boxes. The Bewsys technical team considered a registration feature in the design of the application to establish unit information (i.e military or police), contact information, and reporting information before a reported incident is submitted. All photographs captured with the app were designed to be reduced in size to enable sending over low-bandwidth data networks, and also capture time, date, and position (geographic location).
Additionally, instructions on how to capture the incidents were designed to be displayed before a picture is taken. Data fields such as who, what, where, when, activity, etc. were added to simplify report generation on incidents. After the development of the application, a pilot test was conducted to ensure functionality and feasibility.
The development of the application is helping to neutralise the threats of IEDs and mitigate its effects. The application is increasing collaboration and information exchange within Government institutions, and the Government’s capacity to effectively bring together several policy strands for comprehensive national action.
This contributes to peace and security highlighting SDG 16.
Working with Bewsys has been a tremendous journey. We have not reached our destination, but we are enjoying the ride. Although it was supposed to be a corporate function, at meetings, we built rapport and trust with the consultants, and at the same time, they enhanced efficiency and collaboration.
Bewsys sure knows what it’s about. I’m particularly thrilled with the use of technology to accomplish tasks and also with the packaging of deliverables.
Great service. I will recommend any day, anytime.
The Bewsys team worked professionally on our assignment and sought to deliver our needs with great patience and creativity. They are reliable and competent, and I recommend them for any assignment. Bewsys sure knows what it’s about. I’m particularly thrilled with the use of technology to accomplish tasks and also with the packaging of deliverables.
Very professional in their work and client communication. I was really impressed with their ability to meet all their deliverable schedules and, above all, submit a comprehensive user manual. I will recommend them to other projects.
Bewsys has been able to deliver what was expected based on the agreed timelines. The inception mission in the Philippines has been successful, and discussions with various stakeholders have been fruitful. Bewsys showed eagerness to know more about the unique requirements of the portal upon hearing it from firsthand users. They were able to accommodate various questions, comments, suggestions, and recommendations from different stakeholders, mainly from the government side, with each agency with unique requirements.
Bewsys staff are results-oriented and adapted a lot of tasks, and were flexible to ensure the solution they provided was the best. A feather in their cap!
There is a great need for digital systems development in Africa. I think it will be essential to continue supporting institutions such as Bewsys so they can do these jobs better. Also, we need to think about solutions that can be deployed quickly to support other institutions where there is a match in need.