The HSE (Health and Safety Executive) states that ‘All workers are entitled to work in environments where risks to their health and safety are properly controlled’ and that ‘Under health and safety law, the primary responsibility for this is down to employers.’
Safety requirements can vary by the type of business and environment, but generally involve protecting both the health and physical safety of employees.
As an employer, a key way of protecting staff is to ensure help can reach them quickly and efficiently when required. Here are our Top 5 tips on using effective communications to protect staff in the workplace.
Know where lone workers are at all times
Ensuring lone workers have a planned routine at the workplace or better still, using a communications system communications system which provides precise location technology, means that If there is a problem you can dispatch a rescue team as soon as they are required, exactly to the right location of the alert.
Ensure your staff protection system has a ‘Man Down’ function
Should there be an accident (such as a fall) the staff member needs to be able to easily send an emergency alert, even if they are incapacitated.
Alternatively, intelligent automated communications systems can trigger an alert if a member of staff doesn’t respond within expected time parameters or fails to reach a specific location when expected (for example, a night-time security patrol fails to check-in).
Use different levels of alert
Sometimes staff members need to raise an alert for assistance with a serious incident, but often they actually require help with more routine needs. It’s important to differentiate between a day-to-day alert and something more serious.
Support/security teams need to be able to trust the reliability of assistance calls and staff need to know their alerts will be taken seriously.
Ensure staff know help is on its way
It is just as important to reassure staff that help is coming when required, so two-way communications are an important feature. This also gives peace of mind to other members staff that help is just a tap/click away.
Effective Staff training
Always ensure all staff understand the emergency call system and plan how this should be dealt with in a real emergency.
Rescue/security teams should have detailed training, but it’s important that the whole team knows what to do. This can easily be incorporated into Fire Drills and similar emergency plans.