Interpine has been working with the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP – previously DSE and DEPI) on the Victorian Forest Monitoring Program (VFMP) since 2011. Since then Interpine has been involved with DELWP by providing the following services and products:
  • Productivity and field workflow review for implementation of electronic data capture.
  • Installation of field plot measurement across Victoria.
  • Purpose built field data collection software.
  • Quality assurance and information management.
  • Updating standard operating procedures.
Key to the implementation of the VFMP are the Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs). This collection of procedures describe the VFMP program in detail, giving detailed prescriptions on planning, field operations, data management and data processing.  In July 2014 Interpine was contracted to review the procedures.
Why Review the Standard Operating Procedures? vfmp_dc%20screen%201
The SOPs were developed back in 2010 and they were used to install 453 sample points across Victoria. Over the years most of the SOPs have been amended in their individual capacities in consultation with field contractors and experts. Data collection tools, data capture and data warehousing techniques have also changed over  this time. On behalf of DELWP, Interpine developed a database (the VFMP Database) for warehousing and managing all the data. In 2013 Interpine also developed a purpose built electronic data capture software (VFMP_Data Capture), which was successfully tested in the field in September/October 2013 and was rolled out to field crews during the 2013/2014 measurement season.  A decision was made by DELWP in July 2014 to review and update the SOPs to consolidate the experiences of the past 4 years of data collection, and to incorporate the new data collection software/data management techniques into the SOPs.
The Review Process
  1. Reviewed all SOPs in consultation with previous contractors
  2. Produced a draft copy of the new SOPs and
  3. Draft copy was peer reviewed by a panel of experts from the following international organisations: 
    • Melbourne University (Australia)
    • DELWP (Victoria-Australia)
    • Arthur Rylah Institute (Victoria-Australia)
    • Scion Research (New Zealand)
    • New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (Australia)
    • Ministry for the Environment (New Zealand) – LUCAS project 
  4. A review workshop was successfully held in Melbourne Australia comprising of international experts
  5. Produced a final draft which was reviewed by the panel of international experts.

“It is a very comprehensive but well written document, clearly describing the procedures and processes associated with the activities and tasks for plot establishment, plot measurement, data collection and collation and quality control procedures within the VFMP”
Dr Christine Stone of the New South Wales Department of Primary Industries (Australia).


The new SOPs are currently being tested during the 2014/2015 ground plot measurement season and a final copy will be published following the field tests.


Documentation Control and Publishing

The SOPs are currently available online and offline to field crews in various formats; pdf, epub, and through a website making them available on various electronic devices such as laptops, tablets, e-readers and android devices.   This is made possible by deployment of a document management tool for editing, signing of revisions and publishing the SOPs.   This allows multiple staff to maintain SOP’s at once and a rugged workflow to signoff all alternations prior to publishing, tracking all changes to the user.  Publishing in multiple formats and destinations is a single 1 step process.

Figure 1 – As viewed on a IPad the SOP’s are provided in ePUB format providing an meaningful manner of always have the VFMP SOP’s at hand.

Figure 2 – As viewed on inside a web browser and published within a website for public access.



Figure 3 – As published in PDF format for printing or viewing.