Over 1,300 lone workers and H&S professionals in the UK have revealed a low perception by employees of how seriously employers take lone worker safety, according to the findings of a new study by an employee monitoring service.
With an estimated eight million lone workers in the UK making up 22% of the 31.2 million working population, these numbers look set to increase due to the ever-changing working landscape in the post-pandemic world.
Findings of a recent survey by employee monitoring service StaySafeApp.com revealed a discrepancy between the perception at management and board level (who perceive lone worker safety to be a priority) and the lone workers themselves (who feel that their safety is not as important to the company).
Nearly all companies (94%) gave themselves a 10-out-of-10 rating for how seriously they take the safety of lone workers, whereas just 45% of lone workers felt the same. Additionally, one third of employees (33%) felt that other factors like deadlines and financial targets are considered were more important than their safety.
Although most employers have policies and procedures in place to protect their lone workers, many employees still feel that their company does not take their safety seriously enough. Over-estimation of the usage of risk assessments is also a concerning area which could leave employers exposed if an incident involving a lone worker took place.
Don Cameron, CEO of StaySafeApp.com, said: “The considerable under-reporting of hazards is a major concern for health and safety executives, particularly as they seem unaware that their staff aren’t having these conversations. Under-reporting can lead to employers under-estimating the real level of risk faced by staff on a daily basis and failing to put in the necessary protective measures to prevent accidents or incidents.”
According to the British Crime Survey, 150 lone workers are physically or verbally attacked every day and unfortunately, this number is likely to be under-reported. Only around one third (36%) of lone workers talk to their employer(s) when they have felt unsafe at work. However, most companies are unaware, with nearly all (92%) believing that their lone workers are speaking to them regularly about any incidents and concerns.
Employee monitoring service has been launched by StaySafeApp.com.