Thousands of council staff who work on their own, commonly known as lone workers, now have access to a new mobile phone app designed to keep them safe. The free Loneworker app from unified communications company Voice Connect has been launched this month on the Nokia, Apple and Windows platforms.
The app allows lone workers to set a remote alarm on their mobile phone which is triggered if not cancelled by a pre-set time, alerting colleagues that something may have gone awry. In addition, the lone worker’s movements can also be traced online using a GPS signal sent from their phone.
“Regular signals sent from the phone are transmitted so that the whereabouts of the worker can be traced to within a few metres of their last signal and can be viewed on a Google Maps aerial view of the location,” explains Voice Connect’s Technical Director David Harrison. “Previous known locations can also be seen so that help can be quickly dispatched if required.”
Voice Connect first created a product to help lone workers almost a decade ago and their systems have proved popular with NHS trusts, utility companies and councils. But until now smaller organisations such as estate agents, GPs’ practices or companies with a mobile external sales force have been unable to use such systems because of the number of users needed to make them viable.
“This new mobile app really changes things,” comments Voice Connect’s MD Stefan Olsberg. “It means that any organisation, large or small, can have a robust system in place to protect staff who work on their own or away from the office. These lone workers are amongst the most vulnerable employees, but now their location can be monitored and checked, with help sent on its way within seconds.”