The focus for Safepoint is employee protection and safety, by providing technology-based solutions to concerns with lone working. Launched successfully in 2019, they intended to do a marketing campaign in the first quarter of 2020 to introduce their app and guardian portal to the wider market: a campaign that has been delayed by three months due to Covid-19.
Being a tech company, the move to homeworking in March was an easy transition. They decided to make that move before the Government instruction to ensure they were set up and running when their clients needed them. With a slump in sales, they decided to review their business plan and how best to use the time.
“The first two months were very quiet from a sales aspect so we had to think innovatively of how we could use our time”, explains Callum Coombes, CEO. “We started by contacting our clients asking how we could improve our customer interface, and made those improvements. For the first two months of lockdown, we worked on projects that had been sitting on our to-do lists but never prioritised”.
By being motivated, and continuing to work on the business, customer care and communication were improved for existing clients, and new processes put in place to be ready for increasing their market. They managed to push their business plan forward by months in terms of product features and offer.
“It’s been very exciting. We launched a new product during the lockdown, our first hardware-based product, and have moved plans forward two months to launch a new service shortly. It’s ironic that the time a drop in sales gave us, has enabled us to move the company forward past our expectations for this year,” notes Callum.
Safepoint formed a partnership with another local form, Pathfindr, to produce the Distancing Assistant: a collaboration that may not have happened without lockdown. “Pathfindr provides tech solutions to asset safety and tracking, and we offer a similar solution but for people. We had a conversation on a Monday and within five days we had launched the Distancing Assistant – a piece of hardware designed to keep employees Covid-secure and assist with businesses re-opening”, says Callum. “It is fantastic how people have been working together and looking at different ways of helping each other. We have noticed there is a speed to decision making and clearing problems that wasn’t there before, and a real feeling of being in this together”.
Despite the drop in sales, there was no need to furlough any team member. By using the time to review and improve their offer and procedures, everyone has kept active. Due to operating out of shared premises, and being a relatively new tech company, there were no financial support packages they could apply for. They are hoping to receive a discretionary grant shortly.
Callum is optimistic about the future. The company is leaving lockdown in a strong position, with its product development accelerated and a marketing plan about to be launched. They intend to maintain a flexible approach to working to suit individual needs by mixing office and homeworking. Enquiries have increased and sales are picking up. “Businesses are more aware of staff wellbeing and safety now. This has bumped staff welfare up the agenda and organisations are looking for ways to proactively care for their teams,” notes Callum, “We are working across all sectors, and all sizes of organisations to help them provide a Covid-secure, and safe working environment whether lone working or working in teams. The future looks very exciting”.