Did you know that in the UK approximately six million people work solo or without direct supervision? These lone workers carry out tasks across a range of different sectors, from cleaning and security to health and homecare. Whether you manage a single lone worker or a team of 1000 remote employees, supervisors have a responsibility to protect isolated staff. To help boost the safety credentials of your business we’ve put together a list of key steps to keeping lone workers safe while complying with industry regulations.
Carry out health and safety assessments
Before sending a lone employee to a worksite supervisors should carry out a thorough health and safety assessment. Any identified risks should be immediately managed before work is commenced. It’s important to realise that risks will vary at each individual site so even if the job description remains the same, health and safety assessments should still be unique. Also keep in mind that assessments should be regularly reviewed as workplace risks are dynamic and ever changing. Under UK law all employers who have five or more employees on the books must record significant findings of all risk assessments.
Adopt remote workforce management solutions
As well as keeping track of how many hours an employee accumulates remote workforce management technology is also a valuable safety tool. Intelligent devices such as IQ:timecard will automatically issue an alert when an employee fails to clock in or out at an expected time. The alert fast-tracks response times and ensures absence can be investigated immediately.
One of the easiest and most effective ways to manage the risks associated with lone workers is to communicate with the employees themselves. Ask them how they feel about their lone working environment and what steps could be taken to improve their on the job safety. As well as helping to build better relationships with employees involving workers is also a legal requirement. According to the Health and Safety Executive “employers must consult all their employees on health and safety matters.”
Provide the right instruction, training and supervision
Supervisors should never send an under-qualified employee to complete a task solo. Whatever the sector, it’s the supervisor’s responsibility to ensure that lone workers are armed with the skills and knowledge to carry out tasks safety.
By keeping these simple steps in mind you’ll be able to ensure your remote workers are safe and supported, while keeping your business in line with industry regulations.