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NISO Safety Conference 2014 – Lone Workers and Technology

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On 3 October 2014 at the NISO Annual Safety Conference in the Mullingar Park Hotel, Simply Workflow Developer, Paul Wierzbicki, gave a workshop on the topic of lone workers and the importance of technology when undertaking work alone.

Lone workers are those who work by themselves without close or direct supervision. Lone workers are at a particular risk of accidents or emergencies arising from the work – including inadequate provision of first aid, sudden illness and physical violence from members of the public or intruders. These lone workers have the responsibility to look after their own health and safety and that of those who may be affected by their work. Although, this is easier said than done, so the simple introduction of technology into lone workers’ lifestyles can increase safety massively. Easy to use mobile applications such as Simply Workflow are paving the way to near risk-free working for lone workers, with features such as:

  • customisable electronic risk assessments that are time and location stamped and can prevent the continuation of a job if the risk is too high, these assessments can be accessed from any smart device or computer and managers are informed promptly of these high-risk jobs so that the risks may be alleviated and the job carried out,
  • the ability to quickly report an incident, accident or near miss that may occur when on a job,
  • vehicle inspections and equipment checks so that workers are safe on the job and on the journey home.
The workshop was a great success and all who attended it left with valuable safety information on the topic.
This blog was composed by Cian Higgins, information on lone workers was partly taken from www.hsa.ie.

 

4 Ways Workforce Management Applications Support Mobile Workers

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Countless organisations operate mobile workforces/fleets. It is essential that whilst out of office, or on the road these valuable members of staff are offered appropriate supports which allow them to both perform their tasks to the highest standard and effectively represent their employer.
What support do workforce management apps offer in order to maximize the success and efficiency of mobile workers?

1. Route planning– using a workforce management system that incorporates route planning is invaluable; to both the employee and employer. These systems will plan the best, easiest and quickest route to a job, using live traffic data. This avoids time wasting, tardiness and increases safety.

2. GPS tracking– these days GPS is an innate feature of all smart devices. These systems can capture and save coordinates, meaning that a mobile worker can save frequent job locations in order to avoid time wasting.

3. Offline access– mobile workers often find themselves in remote locations with no access to the internet. It is important that in these situations they can still access essential elements that will allow them to perform their tasks to the same standard as they would in coverage. This feature allows workers to record job/risk assessment details into the system which will then upload once the device is connected to the internet.

4. Lone worker support– a vital feature of any mobile workforce management system. A Lone Worker is  any individual who performs their work alone without supervision. In order to maintain communication with these individuals some systems have built in “lone worker supports”. These can include sensors which detect large drops, request periodical interaction, alert office staff if no interaction etc.

Ensuring mobile workers are provided with adequate technical support enables them to focus solely on the task at hand and not on completing paperwork, entering addresses or other cumbersome processes.

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Simply Workflow provides all of the above features and many more to support your mobile workers. Please do not hesitate to contact us to request a demo, information pack or schedule a webinar.

 

8 Ways Simply Workflow Improves On-Site Safety of Workers

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The Health and Safety of workers should be a number one priority for all managers. Simply Workflow allows managers to ensure compliance with rules and regulations, in real-time, on-site.

A traditional safety check requires workers to manually fill out paper forms and submit them to administration for assessment. This process is time consuming for all parties and often times involves shortcuts being taken and unsatisfactory completion.

Risk assessment simply workflow

The Simply Workflow system vastly improves on-site risk assessments and streamlines the entire process. Features of our Health and Safety solutions include;

  1. Fully customisable electronic risk assessment forms accessible on any smart device, laptop or PC.
  2. Available in online or offline mode.
  3. All assessments are time and location stamped- meaning they must be carried out on-site.
  4. Weights are applied to answers depending on their influence on risks.
  5. The system can prevent a job from going ahead if the associated risk is considered too great.
  6. If a job is prevented from taking place admin will automatically be informed and efforts can be made to mitigate the risks involved.
  7. All results are compiled into easily readable reports for supervisors/admin
  8. Workers can easily report any incidents, accidents or near misses that take place.

Companies who implement Simply Workflow recognise significant improvements in both their safety records and staff awareness of workplace risks.

 

3 Ways to improve Customer Satisfaction with Workflow Management Systems

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Companies operating with a mobile workforce, traditionally have a poor reputation. It is not unheard of for a customer to be left waiting all day, not knowing when, if at all a technician might show up. This is unacceptable and can have an adverse effect on customer satisfaction along with higher costs to the company itself.

How can managers of these mobile workers improve customer service to ensure satisfaction every time?

  1. Communication – Successfully managing any mobile workforce requires efficient and regular communication. This is not only vital between Supervisors and staff but also with mobile workers and customers. Workflow Management Systems (WFM) provide both mobile workers and Supervisors with an effective method of communication which allows any issues to be quickly relayed to all relevant parties. For example; if a technician is running late, something like “one click SMS service” allows the mobile workers to send a pre-automated text to the customer alerting them to this and providing a new estimated time of arrival. Similarly a message is sent to supervisors who, if needs be can investigate this situation or send another technician if required.
  2. Reporting – Complaints can be received by even “best of breed” businesses. It is important to listen to this feedback in order to strive toward complete customer satisfaction. Every complaint can be logged in a WFM system which will generate a complaints report enabling management to get a better picture of what is happening on the field. Example; if one technician has numerous complaints filed against them, this will be easily visible in reports and perhaps identify a training or other issue.
  3. Workflow – Perhaps one of the most important aspects when it comes to ensuring customer satisfaction is that a job is carried out correctly, to a high standard the first time a technician visits a site. WFM systems allow Supervisors and Administrators to customise jobs, laying them out in a step by step manner which must be followed and checked off. The technician is able to take notes, pictures and notify their company of any issues that may arise along the way. This ensures that a job is carried out fully to specification and can also assist with any potential issue resolution. For example; if a customer is unsatisfied with a job, or believes a technician has caused damage, the photographic evidence captured along the way will prove that the job was carried out accordingly and that no damage was cause by a company representative.

 

Simply Workflow provides organisations with a unique cloud based Workflow Management System which streamlines all aspects of operations including all those mentioned above, job scheduling, dispatch tools and many more!

The system, designed by people with real in-field experience, offers companies new levels of flexibility, customisation and customer satisfaction as well as significantly lowering admin costs.

 

Mobile Worker Supports

Simply Workflow provides real time insights into workers performance- improving communication, reports and job standards.

 

 

 

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Simply Workflow featured in this month’s SHP Magazine

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The August edition of SHP covered the recent IOSH conference which Simply Workflow CEO Sean Beirne was a guest speaker. The magazine specifically for Safety and Health practitioners is published monthly and boasts thousands of readers.

Sean Beirne speaking at the IOSH conference

Sean Beirne speaking at the IOSH conference

 

The Irish branch of IOSH held its annual conference in June. The event, which took place in Killashee House Hotel, Naas, Co. Kildare was centered on the theme; ‘Working Together for Risk Prevention- Bring your Boss’.
The aim of this was to encourage both line managers and employees to develop a better understanding of health and safety and create awareness of how colleagues can work together in order to reduce occupational risks.

 
Simply Workflow CEO, Sean Beirne, a guest speaker on the day highlighted the importance of risk prevention and management with a presentation entitled “Innovation is the Business”.

 
Sean spoke about ICL, a Carlow based Telecoms and Utilities Company with more than 250 field staff and their use of the Simply Workflow system which electronically managed their health and safety needs.
ICL were facing a huge problem, the task of managing, collating and measuring health and safety information in real time was becoming challenge too large. In terms of health and safety Simply Workflow offers companies the ability to record and view all health and safety assessments in real time. Risk assessments must be carried out on-site, in real time and if the associated risk is deemed too high the job will not be carried out until contact is made with supervisors and the risk mitigated. The system also stores an electronic record of each risk assessment which is kept, both time and location stamped.

 
Simply Workflow not only restructures traditional health and safety compliance methods it also enables companies to streamline almost all aspects of their mobile field workforce management. Customers say that it significantly limit accidents, create heightened awareness and limits company liability.

 
Offering solutions such as streamlined job scheduling and dispatch, full online visibility and real time information providing continuous improvement and advantages for all companies operating in field based industries.

 

Sean Beirne (far right) featured on pg 27 of Augusts SHP magazine.

Sean Beirne (far right) featured on pg 27 of Augusts SHP magazine.

Simply Workflow CEO Guest Speaker at IOSH Conference

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l-r) Tony Sheridan, HSEQ Manager for John Sisk and Son; Sean Beirne, CEO at Simply Workflow; Former Branch chair, Michelle Peate-Morgan; Dr Sharon McGuinnness, Assistant Chief Executive, Health and Safety Authority; Victor Hrymak, Lecturer at Dublin Institute of Technology and Neil Lenehan, HSEQ Manager at Irish Water.

Speakers at the recent IOSH Ireland Branch conference included Sean Beirne, Simply Workflow CEO, 2nd from left. Tony Sheridan, HSEQ Manager for John Sisk and Son;  Former Branch chair, Michelle Peate-Morgan; Dr Sharon McGuinnness, Assistant Chief Executive, Health and Safety Authority; Victor Hrymak, Lecturer at Dublin Institute of Technology and Neil Lenehan, HSEQ Manager at Irish Water.

IOSH has commended Simply Workflow Customer ICL Ltd.

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IOSH has commended Simply Workflow Customer Integrated Communications Ltd (ICL), a telecommunications company in Carlow, for saving approximately €150,000 with an accident reduction scheme. The initiative was showcased at the launch earlier this year of the Lif€ Savings Ireland campaign, which demonstrates that good health and safety management saves money as well as lives.

 ICL, which employs 220 people at premises in Carlow and Dublin, with a fleet of 140 vehicles, developed a new electronic workflow system to manage health and safety. The ‘Simply Workflow’ system takes the form of an app and operates on android smart phones and tablets.

     

Mick Kelly, CEO at ICL, said: “Risk assessments have always been an integral part of our approach to effective risk management on site to make sure employees work safely and go home safely.

“Simply Workflow has allowed us to streamline the risk assessment process which gives us more insight and control. It’s improved this element of health and safety management dramatically.”

Since introducing the system in 2010, ICL has saved around €150,000 through reductions in administration costs, report building time, printing costs, improved fleet management and lower fuel costs.

The cost of replacing tools and equipment has also dropped as a result of the improved monitoring and close-out processes. Eliminating paperwork has cut the company’s carbon footprint.

ICL anticipates future savings of approximately €100,000 a year using the new technology. Established in 1995, the business provides a range of services to the telecommunications industry, including installing digital TV, broadband and voice products in residential and commercial markets.

IOSH Ireland Branch Chair Michelle Peate-Morgan said: “ICL is showing that, by improving systems for managing the health and safety of its employees, it is also reaping the financial benefits.

“Our Lif€ Savings campaign is encouraging businesses across Ireland to follow in the footsteps of smart businesses like ICL to save millions of euros, boost productivity and increase efficiencies by intelligent investment in health and safety.”

 

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