How we, SAVORTEX, joined other resilient British businesses who during the Covid19 Pandemic came out fighting, working to create safer working environments as featured in Forbes.
By Syed Ahmed, founder and CEO
It was another bustling morning at SAVORTEX®. I was dealing with operational matters regarding how we would assist a roll out with major supermarket chains, when we heard that the virus called coronavius was escalating around the world.
Soon the UK was in Lockdown; the whole country was thrown into panic and uncertainty, almost overnight our business ground to a halt. Using our manufacturing and engineering experience, I turned my focus to how we could join the fight to save lives by adapting our business model. I’d read about companies such as Virgin, LV, and Airbus transforming their businesses to build ventilators to join the fight against Covid-19 and I knew with the expertise of our team and partners that we could play our part and contribute to the fight against coronavirus.
I held an urgent meeting with the board and our engineers and told them of my plans. We discussed the possibility of a previous idea we had, which was to create a hand sanitiser but this time to incorporate our Internet of things (IoT) into the application to make it smarter.
We did a lot of research and realised that we needed to overcome some of the problems associated with standard hand sanitisers on the market which were not helping to fight the Covid fight.
These problems were:-
Traditional hand sanitisers you touch to get liquid. This had to change because 80% of infections spread through touching surfaces.
The only way to find out a hand sanitiser liquid has run out was from a customer complaining there wasn’t any left. We needed to avoid this.
Most hand sanitisers are imports from the Far East (almost 98%) which are made with poor components and not fit for purpose.
With 1 in 5 people not sanitising hands and no one knowing who has sanitised, this endangers the whole building
I knew we could create a hand sanitiser which would solve these problems, so I set our engineers and developers a challenge to design and launch the SAVORTEX® Smart Hand Sanitiser within 6 months!
Hand hygiene is our expertise; I knew we could do it. It had never been more important as it was during this pandemic to find a solution. We used our existing hand dryer design, redesigned the internal components, and replaced the blower with a very large sanitiser liquid dispersal container. Added in new advanced sensors and connected the usage data to the cloud which gave us…
1. No touch. 2. Refill alerts, direct to building manager. 3. British made, means fast lead times. 4. The ability to know who has not sanitised their hands.
This was a proud day for all of the team, we had achieved our objective. It was not easy sailing, we were in lockdown, most other businesses had furloughed staff, but we kept going. With teams working remotely we achieved the impossible and within time of our challenge, we launched the SAVORTEX Smart Hand Drier to Market.
We feel a great sense of achievement that SAVORTEX® has joined an elite team of resilient British companies who have launched new game changing products to win the fight against Covid-19 and any other virus which might head our way. These solutions are urgently required to ensure people feel safe when using public facilities or when in office buildings because right now people do not feel safe going back to work. In fact, 30% of people don’t feel safe returning to work.
Creating safer working environments
The study of 2000 UK adults found that despite warnings from the government to make sure we are washing and sanitising our hands, 12 per cent of people are still not doing so! This equates to 1 million people in London not washing and sanitising their hands.
So, you can understand why some people are anxious about returning to the office or going into a building knowing that several occupants are not following good hand hygiene practices. It also emerged that 27 per cent of workers are fearful of returning to their place of work but would feel more confident if their workplace was fitted with hand sanitiser dispensers and if surface wipes were readily available. We are proud and relieved that we have a solution to this problem through adversity to ease these fears and to boost confidence for employers and employees by providing optimum hygiene in the wake of the Covid-19 Pandemic.
You arrive at a building; you are anxious about entering the building. You are not sure how clean or how safe from COVID19 it is. Immediately your fears are alleviated when you see at the entrance SAVORTEX Smart hand sanitisers which look well manufactured and instantly instil confidence of a fit for purpose design. You put your hands under the hand sanitiser and because they are hands free, you don’t even have to touch the sanitiser to have 3ml of sanitiser dispensed into your hands, which is the exact amount for optimum hygiene.
As you rub the liquid into your hands, you glace over to the other entrance, where you notice someone trying to walk into the building, they stop at the door with some confusion as the door will not open. They look around and gingerly walk over to the hand sanitiser, sanitise their hands and walk back to the doors which open immediately. Now you know that this building is taking hand hygiene seriously. You feel protected and safe!
Providing building owners and staff with peace of mind and safer working environments
The building owner or manager not only has peace of mind that everyone is safe at work but also has the added benefits of just how little maintenance is required. The building manager is wirelessly alerted when the sanitiser needs refilling, so it’s never empty. Which also saves on manpower, someone doesn’t have to keep checking, to see if it needs refilling. What’s more is that the sanitiser has a large 2.1L dispenser which takes only 60 seconds to refill!
It is very important to us that people can feel confident about returning to work as businesses start to get back to the new normal. Confidence can give you a positive outlook on life, increasing your mental and emotional well being, which alone is good for productivity. So, this win-win situation is a huge step for employers and building owners to ensure that the workplace or building is safe, as they need to do under the Health and Safety at Work Act.
Wes Paul, Chairman of the Gemin-i Group and former Global Head of Investments at JP Morgan says… “We rank the health and wellness of our customers as a key priority. The Covid-19 pandemic has changed our world, and personal hygiene will need to change as a consequence of new and persistent viral contagion risks. To improve the biosecurity of our clients, Gemin-i has collaborated with SAVORTEX. The British technology manufacturer has developed a technologically advanced smart sanitiser system that will encourage better hygiene behaviour within the workplace.”
SAVORTEX Partners tech giants Arm Pelion had this to say. “Health and safety is paramount with the ongoing global pandemic, so Arm, partnering with SAVORTEX has been a great opportunity to transform the hygiene industry. Quick deployment is key to addressing the industry needs during this important time. Arm Pelion Connectivity Management enables SAVORTEX to streamline their deployment process and scale out worldwide, wherever hand sanitisers are needed.” Vincent Korstanje, VP and GM, Connectivity at Arm
It’s not only about safer working environments, data protection is also crucial. By providing IoT solutions as we do, it’s essential that we are always complying with the legal requirements relating to data privacy. There are no issues about personal data use, or data protection because data isn’t saved, stored or used for any other purpose other than to know which person has or hasn’t sanitised their hands. We don’t even know any names or phone numbers; we only have access to the building pass number. The SAVORTEX® smart sanitisers are General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) compliant, because the information given for the building passes has already been authorised.
Back to Work with Confidence
The country cannot remain in Lock-down forever, so creating safer working environments has to continue, the SAVORTEX Smart Hand Sanitiser is a solution that works. We need to adapt buildings to allow us to go to work in confidence. If we cannot encourage people to wash their hands enough or correctly, we can use IoT and smart technology to ensure that people sanitise their hands before they enter buildings. It’s as simple and as smart as that.
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