One combined device for complete lone worker and non-lone worker monitoring, alerting and communicat
How one company started with a lone worker protection requirement and ended up improving its whole plant
Traditional Radio Push-to-Talk
This large European pharma company acquired the plant and all existing infrastructure and assets from a previous provider. During the assessment phase it was clear to the company that a number of areas required updating. The push-to-talk radio systems was based on ATEX radios that had seen a lot of use and needed replacing.
At the same time, the site was large and contained several buildings, many of which were not physically linked. They were separated by internal roadways and access points, making reliable coverage across the plant a challenge. The company felt it would have to invest considerably in both outdoor and indoor positioning and would still only have a radio solution.
Communications for Both Lone Workers and All Site Staff
The company originally came to Isle Systems and two other providers with a requirement to protect around 10 lone workers. During the course of the discussions we were able to demonstrate that there were cost effective options for a full site-wide communications solution and a replacement of the traditional legacy two-way radio push-to-talk system. Furthermore, staff needed to move between buildings regularly and the Isle Systems solution automatically defaulted either to indoor positioning when they were inside the buildings, or GPS positioning when they were outside.
The company realised that it could affordably deploy this solution with all the necessary functionality installed on a single smartphone, not only for its lone workers but for the rest of its staff. At this point the scope of the project broadened from 10 workers to over 55 users. The lone workers had a full protection system and all staff had an integrated push-to-talk and alerting system, which together formed a group communications solution.
Better Adoption of a Single Multi-function Device
Isle Systems delivered to all staff a fully loaded smartphone device with ATEX certification and enhanced with outdoor and indoor positioning, camera, SOS button and push-to-talk capabilities, otherwise known as PoC – ‘Push-to-Talk over Cellular’. Lone workers also received extra functionality with the ‘man down’ feature for any emergency situation where they could not actively communicate.
This solution gave the company a streamlined answer to its plant-wide alerting and communications requirements, but more importantly it saw excellent adoption rates of the devices by staff. With bulky devices or multiple devices there is a tendency for users not to carry them around at all times, thereby defeating the object of increasing their personal protection. The all-in-one combination smartphones are lighter than traditional devices and, because they provide much more than just push-to-talk capability or just lone worker alerting, their multiple functions help simplify the range of everyday tasks for users. The net effect of this is easier deployment for the company and greater adoption by staff.
Following the successful implementation of the project and adoption by staff, the company expanded its requirement with additional devices and is soon to increase this again, complete with overarching monitoring, communications and the processing and management of alerts.
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