top of page

Switching to KOREC

Storm Geomatics:

One year on

One year on from their fleet switch to Trimble survey instruments, we catch up with Storm Geomatics and find out that new technology brings many interesting productivity gains, but it’s good business relationships that ensure a smooth transition.

STORM logo 2017 RGB 20mm.png

Established over 15 years ago, Warwickshire based survey company Storm Geomatics operates nationally through two regional offices. The practice specialises in surveying in water and in particular, provides high quality data for flood risk modelling.

Under the guidance of two self-proclaimed water lovers, Mike Hopkins (Managing Director) and Anthony Pritchard (Operations Director), the company approaches every job with the same strong company ethos, namely to deliver accurate, high quality survey data, on time, whilst reducing risks to their clients and supplying excellent value for money.

Consequently, the technology they adopt plays a large part in their success as a company and decisions relating to instruments are carefully researched and based on feedback from the entire survey team.


Their survey equipment fleet is reviewed and replaced regularly and over the last decade this has seen them remain with a preferred supplier. However, during 2019 constant reports of survey equipment failure in wet weather conditions from their river surveyors forced the company to look at an alternative supplier. Nonetheless, there was one happy surveyor within the company, Mark McCafferty. Two years earlier, due to expansion, Storm had purchased a trial Trimble system from KOREC comprising an R10 GNSS and base and an S5 Total Station with an MT1000 multi-track target. Mark had been using this system and was particularly vocal in sharing the benefits it was bringing.

trimbleR_b_ 250x58px_RGB_300dpi.png

Before they carried out their next scheduled fleet update, Storm Geomatics began an evaluation process of other manufacturer’s systems. Following extensive trials, demonstrations and loans arranged by KOREC, the survey team elected to switch to a Trimble fleet and in January 2020 took delivery of 4x Trimble S5 Total Stations and MT1000 multi-track targets, 8 GNSS (4x R10s and 4x newly released R12s, 4x TSC7 data loggers with on board Access field software, 2x VRS Now real-time correction licenses and Trimble Business Center processing software.

Initial concerns about switching suppliers... and how it went
Anchor 1

What about potential loss of productivity?

As a busy survey practice with a full order book, the Storm team was understandably concerned that their customers might be affected during the transition process and that the existing full workload would be hard to maintain whilst the surveyors familiarised themselves with new workflows. Although this was particularly concerning for Storm Survey Manager, Mark Kieras, he reports that his initial fears were quickly laid to rest following a smooth instrument delivery and the completion of early training sessions supplied by KOREC. Mark also ensured that a good relationship was established from the outset with the KOREC support and training teams and consequently, the expected 2-3 months transition period was cut to just a few days with full site productivity achieved in less than a week.

Surveyors ‘like what they know’ and have strong preferences

Storm were well aware that learning new workflows could prove a barrier to the success of the new systems. However, most of the surveyors had already seen the gains from the initial Trimble instruments purchased as a trial two years previously. Because of this they appreciated any aspect of the Trimble technology that allowed them to complete surveys on time without distracting delays, for example the R12’s performance under tree canopy, the accuracy and good connection to the VRS Now real-time correction service and that fact that with the S5 total station’s robust build, rain never stopped a survey.

Building a new business relationship from scratch

New technology brings the need to establish new relationships in many different areas and in Storm’s case this included KOREC’s sales consultants, trainers, technical support, servicing department and hire team. Here at KOREC, we’re delighted to hear that Mark Kieras especially rates this aspect of the switch and in particular, KOREC’s technical support; “KOREC understands completely that when we are in the middle of nowhere, in a rural area, the promise to return a call the next day or replace an instrument in 3 days simply won’t cut it. The technical support we receive from KOREC is a fine example of above and beyond service. Whether it’s help in the field, an instrument loan delivered the next day or a site visit, we know we can rely on them to deliver a service that means our surveyors can stay productive in the field and complete the job. Often they are working several hours drive away from the office so this is a vital aspect of the KOREC offering.”

"The R12 GNSS can save 1 hour plus over a full day. I’ve just taken soft detail points in the woods with almost zero sky visibility with the R12 claiming 20mm accuracy"

Feedback from the field
Mark K.jpg

"Even in misty rain and in such heavy foliage you can’t even see it, the S5s are having no problem locking on. It’s like black magic and certainly a game changer."

Survey Manager

Mark Kieras

"Since the switch to KOREC it quickly became evident that I’m taking around 90% less calls than previously from surveyors in the field. There’s no doubt that we are in a significantly better situation because virtually no time is lost each day due to hardware or software malfunctions. I can better organise the day to day work because it’s easy to mix and match our Trimble instruments which is especially useful for complex surveys, and if we do have a job with particular requirements, the KOREC hire department can supply us with additional top of the range instruments such as the SX10 scanning total station.


I’m now in a better position to estimate how much time each survey will take, especially in summer when heavy tree canopy would previously slow things up. With the R12 GNSS and the functionality of the MT1000 active target, productivity is decidedly improved. In the past I had to schedule in extra survey time to compensate for any problems in the field, now I’m having to schedule in extra jobs to fill the gaps when jobs finish early!"

"I particularly rate the ProPoint technology in the R12 GNSS for surveying under tree canopy and the MT1000 active target. It’s so good, I hardly ever get the tree loppers out these days!"

Senior Surveyor

Toby Moyse

"It’s hard to narrow it down to a single feature of the technology or even two or three when it comes to assessing where the productivity gains are made in the field. In fact, I would say it’s all about the marginal gains that can be achieved over a week of working rather than during an individual project. A number of things, some of them quite small, contribute to this, for example, I can’t fault the Access field software which is noticeably more reliable. The Bluetooth connection for integrated surveying is robust making it easy to switch from a GNSS to a total station and back again – this may be a small point but an integrated system that’s easy to use during summer months is a real time saver.


Additionally, under tree canopy the R12 GNSS enables us to get that last point without setting up a total station – a great time saver at the end of the day. Also worth a mention is the reliability of the VRS Now real-time connection service and its accuracy, for example, when using a common point I’m getting a range of 8mm over 10 different measurements over several days which is really impressive! It also means that I’m setting up a base station far less, another good time saver."

MM Headshot.jpg

"I was fortunate to have access to the Trimble kit for 2 years before we elected to switch entirely to Trimble and for me the decision for a switch wasn’t just about the productivity gains – no instrument is ever perfect – but about the elimination of the problems that marred a working day and affected the survey schedule. We pride ourselves on delivering high quality survey data on-time, and the reliability of the Trimble technology is key to this. At least 70% of our work is in challenging, rural environments and I particularly value the fact that rain doesn’t hamper our progress because the S5 continues to function as normal and the lock on to the MT1000 prism is unaffected, even in misty drizzle.


I particularly rate the VRS Now signal, which has pretty well 99% coverage - even when I was in one of the most rural areas in England, Northumberland, it still delivered good accuracies. The R12 GNSS is also a standout. Most of our work is carried out in rural environments. However when the need to survey in challenging urban environments arises it still performs. Under trees I’d say that nine out of ten times, I no longer need to set the total station up for that last point. This can save 15 minutes each time.


The switchover was very straightforward, it took just half a day to transfer over templates and survey styles which is also useful when we hire in additional Trimble systems."

"The reliability of Trimble systems makes for a much more relaxed day which is a truly welcome benefit, this is especially noticeable when using the MT1000 active target"

Senior Surveyor

Mark McCafferty

"The time saved using the R12 GNSS bringing speed of use without any drop in accuracy. The ability to survey under tree cover is also a vast improvement on what we could do previously"


Matthew Maddalena

"For me, Trimble instruments were very much a blank slate. I’d gained all my previous experience with another manufacturer’s kit, knew it well and was familiar with any quirks that came up and knew how to work through them. Even after an initial packed Trimble training day with new hardware and software familiarisation, I was unsure as to how much benefit a switch would bring. One year on, and I can safely say that the Trimble instruments have definitely improved our field capabilities! In particular, the R12 GNSS is leaps and bounds above what we were using previously and its accuracy and ability to drop in are big time savers. When used in conjunction with the VRS Now service, we’re saving even more time by avoiding the need for a base station setup but still achieving our required accuracies.


Back in the office, we all process our own surveys and Trimble Business Center software provides a high level of functionality with many features that I’m looking forward to investigating further - especially helpful with this is the tool bar that takes you to YouTube ‘how to’ tutorials. KOREC’s service has also been really well received. Recently I was working in a rural area north of Aberystwyth when I had a total station problem at lunch time. By 3.00pm KOREC had visited the site with a replacement. The move to Trimble has been a positive one!"

MBM Headshot 560kb.jpg
Anchor 2

"KOREC understands completely that when we are in the middle of nowhere in a rural area, the promise to return a call the next day or replace an instrument in 3 days simply won’t cut it. The technical support we receive from KOREC is a fine example of above and beyond service"

"Rain doesn’t hamper our progress because the Trimble S5 continues to function as normal and the lock on to the MT1000 prism is unaffected, even in misty drizzle"
Anchor 3
Contact Us

Thinking about making the switch to Trimble? Or would simply like to learn more about KOREC or Storm's services?


Contact us here.

Thanks, someone will be in touch!

Anchor 4
bottom of page