Back to life?

The start of September is always a marker for change, with the end of the holiday season, kids back to school - it is always a serious month.

The start of September is always a marker for change, with the end of the holiday season, kids back to school - it is always a serious month. In 2020 that has gone up another level as the way in which we navigate Covid-19 continues to impact all our best laid plans.

But how is that affecting use of technology, specifically in terms of our personal safety? We all still use technology whether we’re working at home or in the office – it’s just how we’re using it that’s changed to fit our work-place adaptations over the course of the last few months. By extension, the same is probably true for technology improving our personal safety.

As workplaces continue to open up, and more of us venture into the office, more normality continues to resume. But continued reporting around regionalised lock downs or gathering bans, case numbers rising (albeit slightly in the UK) as movements increase, and the question of what happens during the winter months is hard to ignore.

As much as we all want a smooth transition back to normality, it’s inevitable that continued adjustment will take time. According to the BBC [1], 80% of us want to continue to work from home in part at least, after the pandemic – but that two thirds of us are very keen to return to the office in some way. So whatever technology we’re using, flexibility will continue to be key to its use.

As we begin to look into Autumn, here are some of our Lone Worker tips for getting the most out of your lone worker technology:

Keep using:
Try to keep the personal safety considerations and behaviours you had prior to lockdown. Keep any personal safety technology or PPE in good working order, charged and ready to use in line with your routine as needed.

Revisit & Refresh:
Where normal routines may have been broken by lock down over the last few months, perhaps as normality returns, it’s a good idea to consider a training refresh, revisit best practice and ensure you’re all up to date.

Check the policy:
Is there now a potential policy gap for employers where there is a need to factor in usage of safety technology where part time home working, is a medium to long term requirement? It might be useful to consider whether policy needs to be updated to reflect any changes in working practice, moving forwards.

Stay in touch with your champions:
Every organisation has its usage champions – and they remain a key part of the safety culture in any workplace. Keep in touch with them, bounce ideas off them and see if something they’re doing might also work within your routine.

Reporting value?
For the managers out there, we’re used to delivering reports on a regular basis – but we don’t always have as much time as we’d like to scrutinise, review and digest what that means in the longer term. As more of us return to more (traditionally) normal working environments and routines, now is a good time to consider whether you’re getting the most of your reporting or whether it needs a reboot to deliver a better case for return on investment.

[1] “Will office life ever be the same again?” - Working from home has become the new normal for many people during the coronavirus pandemic. But how might office life evolve in the future?

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