Historically, managing waste transactions has been a multifaceted process that was disjointed and involved multiple transactions, many parties, outdated tools, and inconsistent terminology and measurement. This resulted in difficult to obtain waste related analytics and reporting.
But one Akron, Ohio-based company is looking to change that process by managing regulated waste transactions online, centralizing data collection and reporting, and replacing and converting paper to a digital format, which can improve operational efficiencies, performance and reporting. That company is Wastebits, a software and data analytics company.
“After having been in the waste industry my entire career, I saw an opportunity to help waste facilities, generators and service providers better manage regulated waste transactions by developing an affordable, end-to-end online waste management platform,” says Dan Collins, CEO and president of Environmental Data Systems LLC (dba Wastebits).
Launching in 2012, Wastebits aims to help waste facilities, generators and service providers manage various waste transactions.
“We provide this service through our collaborative online waste management platform, which is comprised of different software tools and provides actionable data analytics and reporting,” says Collins.
Waste360 recently sat down with Collins to discuss the online platform and how it is changing the waste industry.
Waste360: What is the purpose of waste profiling and how can utilizing technology help?
Dan Collins: Waste profiling or characterization … essentially is a snapshot of the waste’s properties or characteristics that are required for proper waste classification as defined in 40 CFR.
Regulated wastes have unique handling, transportation or disposal regulatory requirements necessary to ensure the protection of the environment and the public health, welfare and safety. Examples of regulated waste that typically require profiling include industrial solid waste, wastewater treatment plant solids, asbestos containing materials, petroleum contaminated soils and other contaminated soils, oil and gas waste, paint, sludge, etc.
Waste profiling involves the generators’ completion of a description of the waste, its source or process, and physical and chemical characteristics, which is then reviewed and approved by waste facilities prior to shipment. Waste profiling is necessary to comply with waste disposal facility permits, as well as regulations as outlined in 40 CFR.
Waste360: How does this type of technology work?
Dan Collins: It includes an electronic profile form to characterize waste, a robust communication tool within the application, and electronic certification or recertification with automated expiration alerts. It enables approval workflow with ability to specify conditions, reporting for customers around internal key performance indicators and external metrics, and data collection for Wastebits’ customers. In addition to the interdependent set of software tools, the smart system is integratable with third party software … so that our growing number of large and small customers have a single platform for managing all waste transactions.
Waste360: How does the technology track, monitor and control waste streams?
Dan Collins: Wastebits’ platform is a full system that creates an integrated workflow for handling waste transactions online from beginning to end, which tracks, monitors and controls waste streams from generation to disposal.
Users can monitor and adjust workflows by utilizing various tools and reports. Wastebits’ data analytics and reporting features are limitless, and we can provide our customers with meaningful business intelligence. The information and reporting gives Wastebits’ customers significant competitive advantages over those who choose not to connect with the Wastebits platform.
Waste360: What are the benefits of the online technology?
Dan Collins: A growing number of waste facilities across the U.S. and Canada are using Wastebits’ platform, since it provides many benefits that include:
Single platform for managing waste transactions online
- Secure portal for data storage and exchange
- Centralized data collection for actionable reporting and analytics
- Streamlined work flows and productivity
- Internal and external communications
- Risk identification and management
- Third party software integration
Waste360: What are the challenges this type of technology faces in the waste industry?
Dan Collins: Wastebits is solving real problems in our industry. Prioritizing the additional features and functionality that Wastebits have planned can be a challenge. After spending the last 30 years of my career in the industry I know the unique challenges that our key stakeholders face each day. Having to prioritize one need over the others can be difficult. As each problem is unique, they all deserve a resolution.