I was interested by a competitors service which they describe proudly as not offering an  ‘impersonal call centre’ to respond to alarms.

Automated Lone Worker systems come in various flavours, but they all depend upon the reliability of humans to act as alarm Responders.

In my experience, employers often experience great difficulty in identifying staff who are willing and able to take responsibility for responding to lone worker alarms.

Staff who were previously happy to be an informal ‘Buddy’ for lone workers often feel reluctant about being formally listed as a Responder on a system which can reveal overlooked alarms.

Staff may also feel that the added responsibility should be recognised in a job description or pay review.

Employers often select the wrong people to act as Responders. It is usually the workers line manager who is chosen, but that can be a mistake if they are frequently involved in meetings and are prone to missing alarm calls. The ideal people are those who are always available to answer phone calls – these are usually admin staff rather than managers.

Faced with these issues, many organisations decide to delegate some or all of the Responder duties to a call centre [Alarm Receiving Centre]. The ARC is particularly useful outside normal office hours.

ARC staff are usually well trained and fully prepared to handle alarm calls. In an emergency they are always there to help and the fact that they don’t know the lone worker personally isn’t as important as being readily available to assist. SPS Doorguard act as Responders for many Lookout Call customers and they have proved to be a professional and a reliable option to offer customers requiring responder support.