Who are lone workers?
A lone worker is someone who works by themselves without close or direct supervision. Lone workers may be exposed to risk because there’s no one to assist them should they be in a situation where they need help.
Comply with the health and safety law
As an employer, you should comply with your legal duties towards all lone workers under:
- The Health & Safety at Work Act;
- The Management of Health & Safety at Work Regulations.
Establish a healthy and safe working environment
As an employer, you’re responsible for the health, safety and welfare of all your lone workers. The law requires you to think about and deal with any health and safety risks before you allow people to work on their own. You must also establish a healthy and safe working environment. Some things to consider in ensuring your employees are not put at risk include:
- Areas of risk include violence, manual handling, the medical suitability of the individual and the workplace itself;
- Training, levels of experience and how best to monitor and supervise your employees;
- Whether you need systems in place to keep in touch with your employees.
Manage the risks
Employers should assess and control the risks in their workplace. You must think about what might cause harm to employees and decide whether you’re currently doing enough to prevent that harm. First2HelpYou has a template that might help you – First2HelpYou’s Risk Assessment Template.
Consider the working environment and equipment of the lone worker
Consider the working environment of the lone worker and the equipment they’re using.
- Is the workplace in a rural or isolated area?
- Is the employee entering someone else’s home or premises?
- Does the employee have reliable means of communication and a way to call for help if they need it? (such as a lone worker device/lone worker app)
- Does the workplace present a specific risk to the employee?
It’s important that you keep in touch with your lone workers. It’s easy to forget to include them in social events, team updates or training because you’re not physically in contact with them on a daily basis. But this is more of a reason to keep in touch. Having regular meetings or calls with your lone workers reassures them that they’re not alone. It also gives them the opportunity to share any concerns that they might have.
If you require any assistance or help to manage your lone workers, First2HelpYou has a range of lone worker devices/lone worker app to help protect and support your employees. Contact us if you would like any more information.