How to maintain a safe workplace using location technology

Michael Carne /

Maintaining a safe workplace is critical for all employers and managers. This is particularly important for occupations that involve large numbers of staff moving throughout facilities, potentially using large machinery or working in areas with slip and fall risks. While creating a culture of safety and implementing protective processes are key components for creating a safe workplace, often a more systematic and real time solution is required.

At Lighthouse, we have combined location technologies, in particular Bluetooth beacons (or ibeacons) and geo-fencing, with ordinary smart phones to enable the systematic monitoring of employee movement and deliver location specific warnings and guidance. In short, it helps businesses maintain a safe workplace.

How does it work? And more importantly, what are the benefits?

Working with management, Lighthouse identifies potentially dangerous facilities, areas and machinery. Then by deploying Bluetooth beacons (or ibeacons) at these locations, and geo-fencing target sites, Lighthouse is able to monitor in real time employee movement, as well as deliver location specific warnings and guidance direct to employee smart phones.

There are a number of scenario’s where this capability proves critical. Detailed below are some of the use cases:

Monitoring lone worker safety

Maintenance workers, contractors and technicians often work alone in remote or dangerous facilities. Using Lighthouse, management can systematically know when employees enter and exit a workplace. Using rule based exception notifications, management are alerted when workers fail to enter/leave within anticipated timelines. This can trigger check-in contact to ensure workers are not incapacitated.

Providing location specific warnings and guidance materials

Traditionally, employees receive safety warnings during an all-in-one safety briefing. This is often conducted far from, and weeks in advance of, actually interacting with the dangerous area or asset. Using Lighthouse, warnings and guidance material are delivered as employees approach the danger zone. The information is timely and targeted, only reaching those who actually operate the machinery and are in the vicinity.

Delivering haptic alerts for nearby dangers

Many worksites involve machinery working in conjunction with, and around, large numbers of employees. Fork cliffs, vehicles, trolleys and machines present unique dangers due to their dynamic movement and high impact. While sirens and flashing lights help mitigate the risk of collision, new Bluetooth devices that deliver haptic alerts to workers can quickly signal to employees of an approaching danger.

Securing site entry with digitally managed access

Controlling site access often relies on manual, supervision based practices. In contrast, Lighthouse enables digital access codes to be delivered to the right people at the right location, preventing unauthorized access. Further, Lighthouse creates an audit trail of who was where, when and for how long. This may be used for back-in-time verification of employee operations and location.

Improving emergency management with live mapping of employee whereabouts

Knowing where your people are is critical for effective emergency and evacuation management. Further, a recent trend to provide staff with panic alerts in case of a security breach demands more mobile solutions over traditional practices. Lighthouse enables this with real-time mapping of personnel across your facilities, mobile panic buttons and location specific communications direct from staff smartphones. When this is married with additional workflow capabilities, Lighthouse provides a uniquely powerful tool to enable your workforce.

Maintaining a safe workplace requires constant diligence and innovation. Adopting new location technologies provides another mechanism for protecting your people and business.

If you would like to discuss how you could use location technology to create a safe workplace, please Contact Us.