How Mercury eliminated paperwork, automated manual processes and increased efficiency on hyperscale data centre project in Amsterdam.

Digitised Permits Process


Already providing a range of services on site, DataScope was approached by Mercury to address the time and resource intensive demands of managing permits on a hyperscale data centre project.

The Challenge

With an approval process featuring multiple stages, and a fully paper-based manual system, Mercury Engineering worked with DataScope to develop a fully digital solution to address the following challenges:

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Time Taken for Approval

A lot of time was taken to obtain approval and signatures. There was an opportunity to make this process more efficient.


Permits Process



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A Multi Stage Approval Process

With a range of permit types and a complex approval process, a flexible solution was needed to replicate the manual process digitally.

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Missing and Incomplete Audit Trails

A paper-based system presented the potential for lost or incomplete permits and as such, required additional governance.

The Solution

Digitising a Complex Workflow

DataScope worked closely with Mercury to build a digital permits system that enabled site teams and subcontractors to electronically complete, manage and approve permits via any smartphone device.

Taking Mercury’s existing permit templates and multi-stage approval processes DataScope digitised and automated the entire end-to-end process automatically sending documents and notifications to the appropriate user for approval as it passes through the workflow.

For each permit, all actions taken, approvals/rejections, and completed forms, signatures and photographs are instantly available to view in one automatically-created PDF.

Mobile Solution

Mobile Solution

DataScope digitised existing Permit Templates and processes for completion, submittal and approval in the field from any smartphone

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Intelligent Workflow

A permit submittal is automatically transferred to the next approval stage of the workflow. Submitters can live track their permits status from submittal, to each approval and to final approval

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Instant Access to Data

The mobile permits system is underpinned by a web system that allows for instant access to PDF versions of completed permits, reports and timestamped audit trails of all completed permits

Covid-19 Benefits

Though introduced prior to Covid-19 the switch to a Digital System has proven effective in the challenges presented in 2020

Remote Oversight and Approvals Possible

Reduces Risk of Key Authorisers being unable to review documents while in work from home situations or quarantine etc

Reduction of interaction of multiple people with the same paper documents

The Result

Lean and Environmentally ConsciousDigitise Contruction Permits Process


Electrical and Room Access Permits processed in the last 12 months

In the initial stages of the project, over 4,000+ Access and Electrical Permits were manually processed which all required processing, tracking, physical storing, and time.

With all electrical and room access permits now being processed electronically and plans for further permit types to be digitised, the amount paperwork has been significantly reduced on site.


Increased Productivity and Enhanced Oversight

2 Hours per Day

Saved time processing storing and scanning permits on site.

Digitising the Permits System has not only saved time for the Mercury site team, but also seen similar benefits for subcontractors and the wider supply chain. With the time taken to obtain multiple signatures on every permit reduced, this has also mitigated late authorisations and potential lost time.

Permit authorisers now receive automatic email notifications when they need to take action on a Permit and are able to review and sign off permits from their smartphone.

Digital Permitting


With all permits submitted by the supply chain instantly available for review on the web system as PDFs, processing time has been eliminated.

A full, timestamped audit trail of all movements of a permit through the workflow, along with who authorised and when, the Mercury team also have instant access to critical information when it’s needed.

Further supporting this is a powerful reporting suite, allowing key reports to be run quickly and efficiently from anywhere.

Continuous Improvement 

Once the system went live, DataScope continued to work closely with Mercury to improve the system and app following feedback from system users to both improve usability and add additional enhancements.

The most significant update was the full integration with the Time & Attendance System to link operatives directly with permits. When completing a permits document, users can link operatives directly creating a profile of each individual’s authorisations. This has also been used to manage access to restricted areas.
Site Management can then carry out checks on operatives carrying out works by scanning the QR code on their access card to instantly see if they have a live permit as well as viewing their recent movements.

Using the Solution Elsewhere

Mercury LogoAs a result of Mercury’s success with implementing the system on this project, Digital Permitting is now a key part of Mercury’s Digital Edge programme, a key pillar of its Beyond 50 Strategy with plans to roll out the system on further projects throughout Europe.

The flexibility of the solution means that it can also be configured to digitise additional forms and processes as required.

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