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Have you missed your big hit without even realising it?

April 26, 2023

Have you missed your big hit without even realising it?

Drill Program Planning
Mining Data Management
Written by
Sachee Perera

Picture this: you’re a Managing Director or Exploration Manager at a Junior exploration company. You’re running a drill program using a mixture of pen and paper and spreadsheets.

Early results are promising, but suddenly, your Exploration Geologist leaves for a position at another company, taking their deep knowledge of the drill program with them and leaving behind a confusing paper trail filled with missing data and messy handwriting. 

Then, your field team accidentally mislabels promising samples.

You stay calm and plan to fly to site to try and piece together what’s left of the drill schedule and determine the next holes to drill.

Meanwhile, the Board is demanding an update on the drill targets, you don’t have the data you need and you’re having to compile your results from scratch.

Then, the kicker? The Mines Inspector turns up, exactly when you’d hoped they wouldn’t.

You finally get your results back from the drill program months later, but it’s too late. Your new geo was shooting from the hip amidst the chaos. You didn’t have the data you needed, when you needed it, to shift your focus to the most prospective targets. 

This whole time, you were only five holes away from your maiden discovery, your big hit. And the worst part? You didn’t even know it

The harsh truth: most exploration projects fail.

It’s easy to feel like the odds are stacked against you when the pressure to make a discovery is high, drilling time is limited, your geologists are bogged down with admin, and it’s really difficult to get all your contractors on the same page.

So, what can you, as an Exploration Manager, do right now to minimise these distractions and maximise the chance of discovery?

Well, it’s easier than you might think.


How to spend more time doing geology

One of the biggest frustrations we hear from exploration professionals is that their geologists are spending far too much time on admin at the expense of working on the geology.

Instead of reviewing the geoscience data, your geologists are combing through files trying to find daily drill report data from three weeks ago. Rather than making strategic decisions around the placement of your next drill holes, your Exploration Manager is manually adding up the costs of the drill program against an invoice and querying errors.

It doesn’t have to be this way and it doesn't have to be so tedious.

New technology has emerged that can help exploration teams to automate manual tasks like consolidating daily drill report data, reconciling invoices and daily progress reporting.

All of this operational data can be centralised into one place, bringing visibility to your entire operation and making it easy to see who needs to do what and when. Implementing streamlined processes where critical data capture is no longer left up to chance, becomes much easier for managers.

It can also help protect your business against challenges like staff turnover, unintentional overspending and misplaced data. When all your records live in one place, and everyone follows a standardised data collection process, it’s easy to identify or rectify gaps and mistakes each day rather than months or weeks after the fact.

By removing the burdens of manually managing your operational data, your team can focus on the data that matters most: the geological data.

Imagine the impact of being able to instantly remove hours or even days' worth of paperwork from across your team every invoicing cycle. Time that your geos can now allocate toward analysing the downhole data and increasing the chance of success.

These tools exist and are at your disposal.

So, what are you waiting for?

Read more about this technology and see it in action here

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