Using AI to Evolve Manual Handling Safety in the Workplace and Maximize Engagement

Customized technology allows workers to monitor and learn about the safety of their own movements on the job, at all times, giving them the necessary training to prevent injuries.

Before the likes of AI and wearable tech, no, that wasn’t possible.

Typically, once a new beginner has completed manual handling training and has been recognized as trained for the job, they are on their own until their next scheduled training. It can last up to a year! What about all the time in between?

Even for a seasoned worker, how can you be in all places at once, monitoring and ensuring manual handling safety is being followed? How does your worker even know? We are not always aware of how we move during the day.

Also, spotting “one” unsafe posture will not cause injury, how could you spot incorrect or unsafe posture that has been repeated many times or even for months?

Along the same lines, there is no denying the direct relationship between safety and productivity. All ultra-time-driven companies that squeeze production from their employees are aware of the strain and ripple effect on the entire organization in the event of injury or lack of commitment.

Soter Analytics, one of the world’s leading developers of safety technologies, specializes in developing AI-powered safety products to enhance worker engagement, increase staff retention and safely maximize productivity. The personalized nature of their technology allows workers to monitor and learn about the safety of their own movements on the job, at all times, giving them the necessary training to prevent injuries.

Soter technology is individualized and was designed for workers, not organizations. However, the side effect of workers using the products brings proven results to companies, increasing commitment and culture of safety and decreasing lost time injuries by reducing injuries by up to 55%. The data collected can be used by both workers and management, promoting camaraderie and common purpose, increasing morale and trust, helping to break down silos between management and those in the field.

Two Technologies – One Scalable Solution Made Easy

Soter Analytics’ two flagship products are making a huge dent in the injury prevention space worldwide. Soter’s wearable device and vision processing technology, SoterTask, two AI-powered solutions, work in symbiosis, providing the individualized security required for maximum impact.

The technology forges a formalized process for workers with objective data to monitor, coach and support each employee in complying with manual handling activities. Enable to help all seasoned workers or newcomers across a range of locations and roles and covering any chosen period at the same time.

So how do these technologies work?

First, the Soter device is used by workers to collect data and make them aware of safe movement postures that prompt behavior change.

SoterTask is then brought in second to dig deeper into any high-risk, behavior-change-resistant tasks — as seen in wearable device data.

  1. The Soter device is a small, portable matchbox that clips onto any existing gear worn by the worker, usually for about 12-20 days. It can be attached to a shirt collar, a helmet or a helmet for example. The smart device learns the worker through intelligent machine learning algorithms and provides real-time biofeedback when in an unsafe posture. Just like most custom wearables, data is collected and available through a user-friendly app for improvement tracking and data visuals.
  2. SoterTask is a vision processing technology that provides additional information about the movement behavior of tasks. A video of any task being performed is all that is needed and once processed, a detailed highlighted overlay and report shows at-risk areas in the body for improvement requirements.

The two solutions:

  • Are scalable and can be easily distributed across dispersed locations and sites
  • Giving workers the one-on-one training they need to move around safely – around the workplace, limiting downtime and providing real work activities to generate improvement practices
  • Encourage permanent behavior change using scientifically proven biofeedback awareness indicators
  • Encourage and involve workers in their safety by promoting ownership and increasing safety culture

Using leading metrics to measure engagement

The technology and data collected makes it easy to assess the strengths and weaknesses of security efforts to contribute to future success.

  • Collecting quality datasets enables implementation of long-term improvements to manage injury risk
  • Self-reported improvement by workers performing the program and engagement with self-directed learning via biofeedback and in-app hands-on tutorials
  • Recognition of potentially hazardous tasks being performed and proactive worker requests to use Soter and/or SoterTask devices to capture the risk profile before an injury occurs
  • Workers proactively make changes to adopt protective behaviors and safer postures by learning about their own risks
  • Existing injury management resources are moving into the preventative and early intervention space and changing the risk level of roles based on injury reduction data

Bob Chapman often states in his truly human leadership style: “Each of your workers is someone’s precious child”. Much like giving a child a sense of agency, Soter creates its technology to give workers powerful, individualized tools to learn how they move, understand the risks of their job, and personalize their safety. And the by-product? They feel more in control of themselves and of influence over the people and spaces around them.

The result is a real return on investment, boosting engagement and productivity by targeting absenteeism and turnover due to accidents on the job. Temporary workers take ownership of their safety, which gives them a more efficient and productive workplace.

About Soter Analytics

Soter Analytics is a global safety technology company that produces AI-based wearable and vision processing solutions that reduce the risk of ergonomic injuries in the workplace. Soter solutions are widely used in logistics, manufacturing, healthcare and other industries, helping large companies prevent up to 55% of back and shoulder musculoskeletal injuries.

To see how Soter Analytics can help you improve safety behaviors, engage employees and prevent workplace ergonomic injuries, simply visit the website and book a personalized demo!

About Irene J. O'Donnell

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