Ready Homes has contracts with Central and Local Government, providing short term accommodation to vulnerable adults and children in both the London and South and the Wales regions. They employ a number of lone working Housing Officers who often visit premises to meet with tenants or act as mediators.
However, the fact that they work alone puts them at greater risk of assault or injury. The organisation required easy-to-use personal alarms that would enable them to call for help in difficult situations. It was important to Ready Homes that a robust yet cost effective solution was introduced to safeguard their lone workers whilst being unobvious to the tenants they are visiting.
Having had a bad experience with their previous supplier and deeming the solution unsuitable, Ready Homes set about sourcing an alternative. After researching what’s available on the market and meeting with two other providers, Ready Homes concluded that Skyguard’s lone worker protection was most suited to their needs.
The MySOS – Europe’s smallest personal alarm comes fully equipped with the latest mobile phone and tracking technology. At the touch of a button, outreach employees can quickly and discreetly call for help.
Upon alarm activation, Controllers at Skyguard’s 24 hour manned Incident Management Centre can see who’s calling for help. They’ll use the two way audio capability to listen in and assess the situation, talk to and reassure them and send the appropriate emergency response.
As the MySOS is fitted with GPS tracking technology, Controllers can see the user’s exact position as shown on an on-screen map – vital for guiding the emergency response to their location. What’s more, all calls and actions are digitally recorded and can be used as legal evidence. Alarms can also be raised when the MySOS’ ‘Mandown’ feature detects a slip, trip or heavy impact – vital if the employee is unable to call for help themselves.
Skyguard’s service is fully accredited to BS 8484:2016 standards and as such guarantees the highest level of Police response when required. Skyguard will also bypass the 999 emergency system, saving vital minutes in responding to an emergency. Ready Homes distributed MySOS devices to all lone workers that have daily dealings with vulnerable tenants.
Nichola Chalmers, Head of HR at Clearsprings Group (parent company of Ready Homes) explains: “The MySOS is discreet without screaming ‘I’m a lone worker device’, also the reporting and tracking system in real-time sets Skyguard apart from other providers. The fact that it is registered with Police control rooms across the country is an added bonus and shows how passionate the company is in ensuring that staff safety is paramount.”
Explaining the benefits their lone workers gain from the personal safety alarms, Nichola went on to say, “The brilliant thing about the MySOS device is that it can also be used for general monitoring if there is a situation that does not necessarily warrant a police response.”
When put to the test, Skyguard’s personal alarms proved second to none. “An incident in the late hours at our initial accommodation premises saw one of the service users become verbally abusive and there was a risk he would become physically violent. The staff member activated his Skyguard unit and the police were on site within 5 minutes, which is very rare. They were able to take the service user away and the staff member resumed to normal duties.”
Nichola continues, “I cannot pin-point one thing that we find great about Skyguard’s service, everything is impressive, including the price. I would recommend their service to anyone who is looking at a lone worker solution. Having used other known devices in the past, Skyguard is by far the best one that we have used.”