Automating the future of engineering with low-code

About TOM

Founded in 1996 in Singapore, TOM specializes in EPCIC (engineering, procurement, construction, installation & commissioning,) power, and naval architecture. With over twenty years of expertise in the field, TOM has grown into a leader in innovation, research, and transformation.

Better tools exist

It's true that spreadsheets once changed the world and revolutionized the way businesses operate. But things have changed over time, and using the wrong tools can hinder innovation and growth. For data to be understood and enable more effective communication, teams need something to help them visualize data more easily.

On a colleague's recommendation, the TOM team decided to give Zoho Creator a chance, and there's been no looking back since.

"Before using Zoho Creator, we did everything manually using spreadsheets. Every entry had to be entered by engineers on-location. Every time a module was completed, the engineer would make the respective entry on the spreadsheet. It was very inefficient and took up a lot of time. It was also prone to many errors. If we needed to check the status on a particular module, we had to go through several sheets and manually check for the stats. One wrong entry meant we had to repeat and retrace the entire process." -Praveen Chanrasekaran, IT, TOM

Enter low-code

Data is at the heart of many critical business operations, which is why using the right technology is so important. TOM wanted to build an application that would connect scattered data at different points and derive meaningful insights from them rapidly. Since data drives research and implementation, the right analysis leads to faster, better, and smarter decisions.

TOM began by automating its fabrication line with the TOM Workshop application. Currently, they have seven applications built based on ongoing projects. They now have an internal team that creates these solutions when new requirements arise.

"We started with two requirements. One was to have a centralized database where we could safely store and access all our data. And the second was to configure customized real-time reports showing fabrication status and other critical production statistics." -Praveen Chanrasekaran, IT, TOM

TOM Workshop

TOM Workshop, built on Creator, eliminates data silos, optimizes workflows, and integrates diverse internal processes in one place, so everything stays organized. Using this application, floor engineers can upload and share data in a centralized location, making it easier to analyze.

QR code: Scan and done:The fabrication process at TOM involves constructing products by combining typically standardised parts or modules. Whenever a module moves from one workstation to the next, the engineer in charge scans the QR code associated with each step using TOM Workshop. The process is then repeated till the product is fully assembled and ready for quality checks.

Whenever the team wants to check a product's progress status, they scan the QR code associated with it, and all the specifications, including the percentage of assembly completion, are displayed. The key to seamless and frictionless QR code adoption and use lies in the simplicity of the UI/UX design. Low-code makes sure not to overcomplicate a touchless feature like QR codes.

Custom reporting: Let data drive decisions

Centralizing data in one place can help businesses deal with exponential data growth and provide them with relevant data points that can be converted into actionable insights. Customized analytic reports help process data in real time, reduce human intervention, and produce accurate results.

"Customizing reports according to our specific requirements was key to ensuring the project's success. What we want on the first page, where we want it, and how many entries we want on a page—every single thing mattered. We've reached almost 85% accuracy in the output generated, which is really good." - Praveen Chanrasekaran, IT, TOM

Flawless integrations: Leveraging the power of Power BI

Integrations on Zoho Creator let you connect with almost any application you need to run your business. You can either configure them using in-built APIs or use one of the 600+ prebuilt connections.

"We integrate live module reports into Power BI using APIs for production planned processes to enable easy communication with our clients. The reports are automatically synced and up to date without any manual intervention." - Praveen Chanrasekaran, IT, TOM

Roles and permissions: Decide who gets to access what

Low-code enables businesses to focus all data into one cohesive system, making it easily accessible across the organization, based on roles and permission levels.

"The admin of the app can easily allow or restrict access to reports, modules, and more based on the engineer's role in TOM, which prevents confusion and data leaks. They see what they need to see!" - Praveen Chanrasekaran, IT, TOM

Multidevice accessibility: Build once, access everywhere

With Creator, applications built for the web are easily available across devices and operating systems. The engineers at TOM download the application on their mobile phones or tablets and use these devices to access and manage data.

The next level up

Low-code can be the winning variable in a world of constant change for businesses ready to break free from obsolete and inefficient technologies. As low-code technology evolves, the range of features offered grows, accommodating newer technologies while integrating with old ones.

The TOM team plans to automate several critical business processes using Creator and integrate them into a holistic end-to-end solution addressing their business needs.

"We're looking to incorporate a live tracking feature to the existing application using GPS. It'll allow both us and the customer to track the built module's delivery as it moves from our location to the customer's. We're also planning to extend the application to the customers, where they'll be able to view the progress of the manufacturing process and track the status of the final delivery. This will help us improve the overall customer experience by keeping them involved in the overall process." - Praveen Chanrasekaran, IT, TOM

Future and beyond

Automating mundane tasks like data entry gives the workforce their time back, allowing them to focus on things that require strategic thinking. It makes the underlying processes more resilient and agile so businesses can adapt and react to customer preferences.

Low-code platforms like Zoho Creator are full of possibilities. They aren't just about simplifying processes and creating applications quickly. They're a transformational opportunity that, when utilized properly, can add more value to your core business values and make you thrive in today's challenging and unpredictable times.

"It has drastically reduced the time spent on manual data entry and organizing and boosted the overall productivity. All the stats we need are readily available, making decision-making very simple, because we know where the glitches are and what we need to improvise. Even when a new requirement arises, we don't need to set up a meeting to discuss the cost and scalability aspects—we just convey the idea to our IT team, and we have the solution built and ready to deploy in a matter of days. For me, it's all about how Zoho Creator is so easy to use that almost anyone can explore and learn how to use it quickly." - Praveen Chanrasekaran, IT, TOM


  • Increased productivity
  • Decrease in manual errors
  • Better workforce engagement
  • Auto-workflows implementation