In a rather nondescript building on the main street in Levin a group of dedicated staff have been monitoring vital alarms around the clock unfazed by the Covid-19 crisis.
Securely is a local company that specialises in medical, house and business alarm monitoring across New Zealand. A team of 18 staff working on a 24/7 roster take every incoming call from their Levin base.
During level 4 lockdown, the Securely monitoring centre managed 6030 security activations resulting in 133 guard dispatches and 5351 medical activations resulting in 444 ambulance dispatches.
That's a lot of calls.
Team Leader Sarah Tipping said many of the medical alarm activations during level 4 lockdown were from concerned customers testing their medical pendants. Sarah said their relief when someone immediately answered their call was palpable.
"We took a lot of calls from people with a medical alarm that were worried we wouldn't be here because of Covid-19 or that we would be on reduced hours. We explained that it was business as normal and we would be here for them 24/7, no matter what.
"Then we had a bit of a chat and sometimes a laugh with them about their day and left them feeling reassured and happy that we were available."
Sarah said the biggest challenge managing a team of 18 during Level Four Lockdown was the roster and ensuring that no one in the office felt unsupported or isolated without the rest of the normally Securely office-based team around.
"We also had some of our team working from home taking emergency calls from the start of level 4 lockdown, so it was important that they felt supported, valued, and part of the team in the office.
"While in the office, we made sure they were all kept as safe as possible by spacing out desks around the office and carrying out regular cleaning of workstations and communal areas."
Securely's Senior Management team worked on a roster ensuring that a manager was on site every day to handle any issues that arose and mucked in with regular cleaning and keeping morale up with staff.
General manager Mark Smith says protecting the integrity of the monitoring call centre has been our primary focus throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.
"Our customers rely on us in what can be very traumatic situations. It's vital that we are at the end of the phone when people activate their pendant, or a house or business alarm is activated. That's what we're here for and we won't let our customers down.
"In order to protect our monitoring team, the remainder of our Securely team have been working from home and will be slowly transitioned back into the workplace once we're sure that the risk is manageable.
"This may mean that we take a much slower and cautious approach than other businesses in getting staff back into the office."
www.securely.nz 0800 865 865
-supplied by Electra