How to Manage the Safety of a Global Workforce

Tim Crockett

Tim Crockett
Vice President, Security
HX Global & Healix International

In today’s world, the health and wellbeing of your employees across the globe is an increasingly important focus. In the face of terrorist threats, natural disasters and health epidemics, the increasing duty of care obligation for employers is undeniable. The question then becomes: what’s the best way to ensure the safety of a global workforce when a major incident occurs?

When an incident occurs, time to react is critical and four factors are essential: ability to efficiently pinpoint employee locations, assess their exposure to the incident, open communication channels and determine whether they need assistance or support, coordinating an appropriate response.

Technology undoubtedly plays a key role in this process. The location-based data and knowledge of where your employees are or where they’re going to be, particularly while travelling, is critical. However technology alone cannot meet an organisation’s duty of care needs. Once you know who might be affected by an incident, what happens next? How do you reach those people, and what do you do if they need help? The fact is that it does not matter how technologically advanced the world becomes; nothing can take the place of human interaction, insight and experience.

Because it is almost impossible to manage a critical incident or crisis as it is unfolding, the importance of planning and research cannot be underestimated when mitigating risk and its impact on your staff. Your employees should have access to relevant information and training before they travel thereby empowering them to mitigate the myriad of issues faced by today’s global workforce, be that overseas or closer to their normal place of work. This same system should provide the employee the ability to pick up the phone and talk to an expert. Whether they require advice, assistance or find themselves in danger, the knowledge that they have immediate access to medical and security professionals can make a world of difference.

This human element is also critical for risk program managers and other stakeholders. Access to real-time information and guidance on how best to communicate with executives and family members can be the deciding factor in whether an incident is managed successfully or not.

Travel Risk Management with the aim of living up to one’s ‘Duty of Care’ obligations has many facets. This coupled with the fact that no two companies or organisations have the same risk profile means that those responsible for the safety and wellbeing of employees should consider an enterprise approach and consult with many other stakeholders as this is no longer a subject that is purely ‘travel’.


At Healix, we offer a suite of products and services to provide you and your employees with a robust support system to attend to the myriad of issues facing today’s global workforce. To find out more, click here.

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