1 Aug 2019

Health & Safety FAQ: Lone workers

MHA Monahans lone man working at height

Q.

Many of us have employees that work late, away from the main office, deliver goods or perhaps attend meetings away from our premises. How do we protect these staff?

A.

Lone working can be found in most companies and is often an issue as we just don’t think about the consequences as it's part of what we do.

Managing lone working may require many different solutions, but it's best to go back to basics first. Does any of your staff actually work alone – so do staff work late when everyone has left the office, attend business meetings by themselves, deliver goods to customers on their own?

Review what your staff do and the hazards that they could face. Are they exposed to violent customers/clients, is cash held on site, could they become tired driving for long distances for meetings or delivering goods? Once you understand the hazards your staff face, you can review the systems you currently have in place to manage those risks – are they adequate? Do they really work? What would happen if someone became ill?

Once you know the risk(s) and what you currently do to protect people, is there anything further you can do?Would changing shifts help them? Could staff ring in to confirm their whereabouts / location?

Don’t forget to get your staff’s input. They know the issues they face and will often be able to provide practical solutions.

Once you have reviewed and possibly put new systems in place, record them, and ensure that everyone knows the new procedures to keep people safe.

If you need support with lone working or would like a free Health and Safety review, please contact Debbie.