As the UK government again advises people to work from home where possible, employers can rely on Safe Hub to protect home lone workers.
Among recent updates from the UK government, was the statement that office workers who can work effectively from home should do so over the winter. In order to meet their health and safety requirements, that means employers need to protect everyone who is working from home. As with the full lockdown earlier in the year, they need to recognise that home workers are lone workers. By now, employers whose staff are working from home should have carried out some sort of risk assessment. And they need to have put in place measures to mitigate identified risks. In this blog, we’re going to focus on how the Safe Hub smartphone app keeps home lone workers safe.
Focus on the Safe Hub smartphone app for home lone workers
For home lone workers, employers need to cover every lone working risk scenario. The Safe Hub lone worker safety system provides a range of features: emergency, buddy, voice memo, proactive, reactive, GPS locate, virtual barrier and broadcast support. That means that we get the right sort of help to home lone workers when they need it. For lone workers at home, the Safe Hub smartphone app provides a fully supported safety solution. Working seamlessly across all smartphone operating systems, and on all mobile networks and over broadband and Wi-fi connections, the app is easy to use for everyone.
Three Safe Hub safety features are particularly relevant for home lone workers. They can actively trigger an emergency Red Alert if they’re in trouble. They can confirm their welfare periodically with Safe Check, and they’re proactively in control of setting intervals for when they check in. And Safe Hub offers reactive impact and fall detection with Worker Down, covering home lone workers who may have slipped, tripped, or fallen. In each case, highly trained staff at our Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) will spring into action to assist, accessing the worker's GPS location and following escalation protocols to get them the help they need. And whichever of the features is activated, in the event of a false alarm, the worker can simply advise the ARC to stand down.
Red Alert for home lone worker emergencies
Red Alert is the emergency safety feature that helps lone workers in a crisis. If they feel at risk or need support, they simply select the Red Alert option on their device. This will immediately open a two-way call with the ARC, which operates 24/7/365, guaranteeing a response in seconds. The ARC officer has secure access to the worker's personal emergency escalation protocol and real-time GPS location, confirming their home address. This lets us direct emergency services straight to the worker, bypassing 999 call centres and saving critical time. If there is a false alarm, the worker can simply tell the ARC to stand down.
Safe Check provides proactive support for home lone workers
Safe Check is our periodic welfare ‘check-in’ system directly managed by the lone worker. They simply confirm their welfare by replying to automated prompts at set time intervals. Lone workers at home can easily enable Safe Check on our app and many of our dedicated devices. Lone workers can select and amend the intervals, as needed to suit their working practices. At the end of the set interval, Safe Check will request a code from the worker. Once this is entered on the worker’s device or app, Safe Check resets and a new countdown interval begins. If a worker doesn’t respond, the issue is flagged at the ARC. The personal escalation process for that worker is then triggered, whether it’s a call to a line manager or an immediate dispatch call to emergency services. And dealing with a false alarm is equally simple: the worker simply tells the ARC that they’re OK.
Worker Down offers help for incapacitated home lone workers
Safe Hub uses the built-in motion sensors in mobile handsets and specialist devices to enable Worker Down. The hub then monitors the movement of the handset and its orientation. If, for example, the handset hasn’t moved for a length of time this could indicate that a lone worker requires emergency help, perhaps after a fall or incident. Alternatively, a sudden jolt or change in elevation or orientation could indicate a fall. Worker Down then automatically raises an alert with the ARC. But we recognise that lone workers at home may move less than they ideally should. We can decrease the sensitivity of the safety feature, to avoid false alarms if the smartphone doesn’t move for a length of time.
Safe Hub plays its part in helping people to work at home
Not only does Safe Hub provide all these features to home lone workers, but it’s simple for employers to manage too. Workers’ details can be added or deleted as and when required, without incurring any additional set-up or admin costs. And as it’s a fully supported and managed system, our Support Desk can carry out all these tasks to reduce further the administrative burden on our clients.
As noted above, home lone workers using the smartphone version of the app can have access to all Safe Hub’s safety features. We have equally easy to use versions of the app with functionality for standard mobile phones, laptops, and desktops. And of course, we also offer the Safe Hub system on a range of dedicated lone worker safety devices such as SOS Fob and ProtectMe.
We want to support the UK government in efforts to get people working at home where possible. At the same time, we recognise that employers need to make it as easy as possible for people to stay safe while working from home. With Safe Hub, the fully supported lone worker safety system, we’re confident that we’re doing our bit to help.
Contact Lone Worker Solutions and the Safe Hub team today to find out more about protecting home lone workers.
Post by Spencer Wild
Spencer is an Account Executive at Lone Worker Solutions (LWS). As well as supporting existing clients, he works to introduce new clients to Safe Hub, and its package of emergency, buddy, proactive, reactive, broadcast, and virtual barrier protection for anyone working alone or out of sight of colleagues. The system supports lone and remote workers on the widest possible array of BS8484:2016 Gold Certified devices, including Android, Apple and Windows smartphones, BlackBerrys, standard mobiles, PCs, intrinsically safe devices, specialist personal safety devices and satellite phones.
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