Guardian24 Provide Housing Officers with Lone Worker Protection
For over 50 years, the Link group of housing, support and regeneration companies offers a wide range of services to 10,000 families and individuals, primarily in Central Scotland. Link help to deliver innovative regeneration projects in partnership with local communities and employ over 400 members of staff.
Amongst those 400 employees are a number of lone workers who operate across the Group’s wide-reaching area. Staff work from several site locations, undertaking roles in the housing sector and support vulnerable people within the community.
The risks staff can be exposed to are associated with visiting empty or remote properties, construction sites, visiting tenant’s homes and dealing with dissatisfied clients or service users. Staff are also at risk from identified hazards which are not restricted to normal office hours or weekdays.
Guardian24 was originally appointed in 2003 to provide a lone worker protection system, as it had been identified that phoning offices and using a diary were not robust measures to ensure staff received support when appropriate. More recently, the contract for this service was put out to tender and Guardian24 was once again chosen as the preferred supplier.
Guardian24 was chosen over other lone worker providers by comparing the service delivered to meet the Link Group’s requirement, quality and cost.
Link needed a system that would allow them to continue predominately using basic mobile phone technology.
The system allows us to log activities and use mobiles covertly (alert system) to summon assistance should the situation require. The use of the Alarm Receiving Centre (ARC) as the first point of contact for Guardian24 has been seen by staff as a positive step forward in improving communication. The use of individual protocols for ARC allows a more flexible approach to contacting staff on activity overruns or failure to end activity on time, usually ending escalations quickly.
The introduction of the system enhanced the safety of lone working staff especially after initial resistance. Staff who use the system on a regular basis find it an easy and quick system to use, with the number of escalations reducing as it is used routinely for logging activities.
The system provides a robust formal lone worker protection system which alerts the company when staff may require support. The provision of incident reports and the ability to provide management with an overview of use allows issues to be identified and action taken to correct them.
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