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The Disruptors: How Safepoint's app is restoring faith in lone worker safety solutions

PUBLISHED: 09:00 03 September 2019 | UPDATED: 13:56 03 September 2019

Lone workers represent over 20% of the UK workforce - Safepoint allows them to share their movements with their employers   Picture: Safepoint

Lone workers represent over 20% of the UK workforce - Safepoint allows them to share their movements with their employers Picture: Safepoint

Safepoint

Lone workers represent over 20% of the UK workforce - but working alone increases their safety risk. The latest in The Disruptors video series, CEO Callum Coombes explains how Safepoint is helping businesses to keep their solo workforce safe.

Safepoint's Callum Coombes got the idea for the software after hearing a friend who works for a local water company complain about the awful software they have to use    Picture: Henry IddonSafepoint's Callum Coombes got the idea for the software after hearing a friend who works for a local water company complain about the awful software they have to use Picture: Henry Iddon

Safepoint is an app that allows employers to easily monitor their lone workers' safety in compliance with UK health and safety regulations. Lone workers are monitored, sharing their location data and can send emergency signals without the need for user intervention.

What was the opportunity you identified that led to the launch of your business?

My friend who works for a local water company was complaining about the awful software he has to use and as a software engineer myself, I thought "This can easily be done better".

For employers non-compliance can lead to fines and even imprisonment, but the current solutions are plagued with problems like outdated software meaning lone workers avoid using the product, and unattractive long-term contracts with complicated pricing structures.

How did you use invention and innovation to disrupt the market?

Safepoint allows employers to easily monitor their lone workers’ safety in compliance with UK health and safety regulations    Picture: SafepointSafepoint allows employers to easily monitor their lone workers’ safety in compliance with UK health and safety regulations Picture: Safepoint

Safepoint offers new aspects that the lone worker industry hasn't encountered before, like instant product access via online software, pricing transparency and straightforward global availability. We offer flexible contracts to serve thousands more small businesses that previously couldn't afford an effective lone worker safety solution.

What were the challenges you faced along the way and how did you learn from them?

A big challenge was building the platform itself. In mid-2018 we decided to consolidate everything we'd learned, and completely rebuild it. This was a difficult decision but Safepoint is now more robust and scalable than it was this time last year.

What's been your proudest moment in your business' development?

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Outside recognition of our efforts makes us really proud of what we're building - whether that's being accepted onto 2019's Future50 cohort, being finalists at the UEA Innovation and Impact Awards, or being invited to talk on BBC Radio.

Safepoint's chief executive Callum Coombes and head of business development, Nik Misin   Picture: Henry IddonSafepoint's chief executive Callum Coombes and head of business development, Nik Misin Picture: Henry Iddon

We also love being able to demo Safepoint to businesses and hear their positive feedback and excitement to use the platform, this definitely makes all the hard work worth it.

If you were starting from the beginning again, what would you do differently?

The first thing we would do is apply more realistic build times!

What would be your advice to someone launching a disruptive start-up?

Just keep going. We have had some real highs and real lows on our entrepreneurial journey so far. It's so important to passionately believe in what you are doing and focus on that next big milestone.

The biggest challenge? Chief exec Callum Coombes says the significant hurdle they overcame was having to rebuild the platform from scratch    Picture: SafepointThe biggest challenge? Chief exec Callum Coombes says the significant hurdle they overcame was having to rebuild the platform from scratch Picture: Safepoint

What are your plans for the future?

We are currently rolling out our live trials and onboarding new businesses, so we're on the lookout for local businesses that want to get involved in using the Safepoint platform.

The Disruptors is a new video series highlighting the Norfolk, Suffolk and Cambridge businesses shaking up their respective industries. Read more and follow the series here.

Want to tell us about how your business is disrupting its sector? Contact David Fieldhouse on 01603 772456.

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