Security staff screening

SmartTask enhances compliance and reporting capabilities to support security sector needs.

In recent months, SmartTask, the leading provider of employee scheduling and mobile workforce management software, has been working hard to add new tools designed specifically for the security industry. In Security thought it was an ideal time to catch-up with CEO, Paul Ridden, to find out about these latest developments.

ADVANCED VETTING COMPLIANCE

Following demand from the security sector, SmartTask has launched a BS7858 compliant vetting solution. SmartTask Vetting has been designed to ensure that security service providers are not overlooking this essential staff screening requirement, while following a consistent and approved process.

“We recognised a growing need for sophisticated and streamlined vetting procedures, especially as businesses are facing increasing demands from legal regulations such as 10 year working history, DBS checks, right to work and GDPR,” explains Paul Ridden, CEO of SmartTask. “As a result, we have designed the most comprehensive vetting, background checking and pre-employment screening compliance solution currently available for the security sector.”

The fully integrated solution will simplify and automate the complicated process of vetting employees. This will enable businesses to deliver straightforward and repeatable procedures that capture employee details, ensure they are tested, have the relevant history and confirm they have the skills required. It will also ensure that employees are made aware of any health and safety risks, as well as confirm they have signed the appropriate documentation to verify they have been trained to undertake the work. 

SmartTask removes the need to store paper copies of certificates and identification documents , you can now store them electronically alongside the vetting record. It is even possible to use the camera in a smartphone or tablet to capture copies out in the field.

Using SmartTask vetting, businesses will now be able to undertake thorough background checks that meet the necessary standards – including BS7858 – so they are not vulnerable to the costs and risks associated with failed screening processes. This will allow them to meet contractual expectations of new and existing clients, safely providing a range of personnel, based on the nature of a location or required security clearance.

“By possessing the ability to manage employee onboarding – from the most basic skills requirements to highest levels of screening – security services providers can ensure that all employees are bonafide. This will enable these organisations to offer a very competitive and potentially greater value service to customers, while keeping employees happy, achieving added peace of mind and reducing administrative overheads,” adds Ridden.

ALTERNATIVE TO PAPER-BASED DOB

As SmartTask’s portfolio of security customers has grown, the company has been increasingly asked to extend the functionality of the software to include an electronic Daily Occurrence Book (DOB). With most manned providers still using a paper-based solution, SmartTask quickly recognised the value of developing the first cloud-based alternative to a traditional DOB log.

Working closely with a number security service providers, SmartTask has introduced the Daily Occurrence Log (DOL) module, which can be operated from a PC, smartphone or tablet. According to Ridden: “SmartTask is using the latest cloud-based technology to bring the DOB into the 21st century, while also removing the cost of providing, distributing and archiving paper-based logs.”

Creating an entry to the new DOL module is easy using either the keypad or for those less comfortable with keying in data, voice-to-text allows someone to speak into their SmartTask-enabled device and have it electronically transcribed. Entries can be consolidated across multiple sites and collated into a range of types – from high priority incidents to notable events and low priority information – as well as divided into user-defined sub-categories.

DOL makes it straightforward to generate reports for customers, while incidents can be escalated to a control room or management team with an automated alert. Not only that, pictures can be attached to entries directly from the camera of a smartphone or tablet, so image-based supporting evidence can be added to create a complete record of what has happened.

“Our DOL module provides a cost-effective replacement to the traditional paper DOB logbook, with the many advantages provided by being part of a cloud-based workforce management solution,” suggests Ridden. “In fact, when used in conjunction with the complete workforce management suite it delivers a powerful tool for communicating between your control room or the office and your teams in the field.”

NEXT GENERATION PATROL MONITORING

NFC has been around for a while now and is now widely used for Smartphone-based patrol monitoring solutions. “This technology is cost-effective and works well where close proof of presence is required and a mobile device can easily scan a strategically-placed tag,” explains Ridden. “However, there are scenarios where NFC just does not work, such as public spaces where tags can be removed or are not aesthetically acceptable, or simply cases where officers have their hands full or cannot physically get their smartphone out and find the tag.”

Tasked by a number of manned security businesses, the company explored what other affordable solutions are available to help overcome these issues. This also included looking at the potential for using the technology to identify when officers were diverting from their patrols including any areas they have been asked not to visit.

The research led SmartTask to introduce SmartBeacons, which use Bluetooth low-energy beaconing technology to provide tags that have a range of around 30 feet. While more expensive than NFC tags, they are not prohibitively so, and they are ideal where a security company wishes to confirm that an officer has been in an area without the need for them to find a tag.

“Our SmartBeacons can be mixed and matched in a patrol to complement NFC tags, providing a flexible way of confirming and monitoring patrols. We have even been able to configure the technology on Android devices, so the officer does not even have to take the Smartphone out of their pocket for us to detect they have passed within range of the tag,” concludes Ridden.

SmartTask is an advanced and simple-to-use employee scheduling and mobile workforce management solution that enables security companies to better plan and manage their workers, so they are at the right place, at the right time. The software combines intelligent rostering, live monitoring and integrated proof of attendance across both static and mobile teams, making it the ideal tool to improve operational control, enhance customer satisfaction, and support duty of care to staff.


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