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How M2M and IoT can help with food hygiene in the food service industry

December 5th, 2017 by Mandy Fazelynia

Anyone working in the food service industry will know just how important food hygiene and food safety is. Not only does it mean that customers are safeguarded against potential food poisoning, but it also protects businesses from legal action against them and it protects their reputation.

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The Food Standards Agency publishes clear guidelines for food handling businesses to ensure hygiene standards are met. Their guidelines state that “good food hygiene is all about controlling harmful bacteria, which can cause serious illness”. There are 4 key things to remember which are also known as the 4 C’s of food hygiene…

  • Cross-contamination
  • Cleaning
  • Chilling
  • Cooking

Of all the 4 C’s, chilling is an area where M2M and IoT technology can really help. With the latest innovations, food services companies monitor and maintain temperature more effectively than ever before.

Chilling food properly helps to stop the growth of harmful bacteria and some foods therefore need to be kept chilled to keep them safe. Cooked and uncooked meats, prepared salads, and dairy-based desserts are just some examples of foods that must be kept below a certain temperature, or they risk becoming contaminated.

For food service companies providing large amounts of produce for their customers, maintaining temperatures at each stage of the process is absolutely crucial. Whether food is stored in temperature controlled storage facilities or is being transported in specialist vehicles out the road, temperatures must be maintained at all times.

To help food service companies monitor and maintain these crucial temperatures, Zest4 have recently launched Smart Sensors. These clever, compact devices enable food companies to monitor temperatures around the clock and provide real-time data through an easy-to-use, downloadable app. Companies can also programme their devices to send warnings and alerts should temperatures dip below a pre-defined limit, helping them to take action instantly and avoid potential disaster.

Smart Sensors operate using M2M and IoT technology which enables connected devices to continually interact with one another, collecting and reporting data 24/7.

For communications resellers interesting in adding M2M and IoT solutions to their product portfolios, offering Smart Sensors is the perfect way to start. Zest4 offer a complete end-to-end solution including hardware, connectivity and installation support.

Smart Sensors are just one of the M2M and IoT solutions that Zest4 offer. To find out more about M2M and IoT solutions from Zest4, visit http://www.zest4.com/m2m.php or call our team on 0161 956 3355.

Why Anywhere SIM is the perfect solution for lone workers

November 27th, 2017 by Mandy Fazelynia

It’s actually quite surprising to realise but there are a significant number of people who spend a large part of their day working alone. In fact, according to lone worker safety experts, People Safe, there are around 8 million people in the UK who are classed as lone workers – that’s 22% of the 31.2m UK working population.

You may not have really considered it but lone workers come in many guises…from sales people to estate agents…from nurses to lorry drivers…builders, gas & electricity meter readers, cleaners and many, many more. They may not be out on their own all of the time, but when they are, their employers have a legal obligation to carefully consider health and safety risks and ensure their well-being.

There are many ways that risks can be reduced such as risk assessing, training and implementing best practice policies, but one of the most important factors in ensuring lone worker safety is enabling workers to keep in touch and report back to base.

In this age of advanced mobile technology and the constant evolution of Smartphones, keeping in touch should (in theory) be easy to do. But unfortunately, due to the infrastructure of the mobile phone networks, there are often occasions where lone workers may be out of reach. Despite their good intentions, there are areas of the country where some mobile networks have better coverage than others, so committing to one particular network won’t guarantee you the coverage that your lone workers may need.

But there is a now a solution to poor and intermittent mobile coverage – the Anywhere SIM.

Recently added to our product portfolio here at Zest4 and now available for resellers to offer to end-customers, Anywhere SIM is an innovative virtual mobile network that provides users with seamless roaming across three mobile networks. This ability to connect with any available network from a single SIM is the ideal solution for lone workers as they can be assured of continuous connectivity and be able to make and receive calls with no interruption in service. With continuous connectivity to the internet-of-things, employers can also monitor the location of their workers and be alerted of any potential difficulties that they may be having, and provide the assistance that they need.

Communications resellers wishing to find out more about Anywhere SIM should contact Zest4 on 0161 956 3355 or visit http://www.zest4.com/mobile.php

Why Go Rugged vehicle telematics solutions are perfect for construction equipment

November 14th, 2017 by Anton Le Saux

If you work with customers that own or lease yellow plant and other heavy-use construction equipment, you’ll know that they have daily challenges that cause them real issues. I’ve been working with a few construction customers of late and have noticed that there are some common issues…

1. Ensuring the security of assets

You don’t have to drive very far along a major road or motorway in the UK before you spot a piece of equipment on the side of the road. Millions of pounds worth of equipment is left unattended at the end of every working day so it’s inevitable that things occasionally go missing. So being able to track assets, receive alerts on any movements and know where they are (should they go walkabouts) is crucial for machinery-operating customers.

2. Engine running hours and maintenance

Unlike cars that are serviced at periodic intervals based on their mileage, plant and construction machinery is different – it’s serviced based on engine running hours. This can be difficult to monitor, however, but knowing what use a piece of equipment has had is critical to the maintenance schedule.

Then there’s the issue of unplanned maintenance. It’s often difficult to know when something is going wrong before it causes a significant problem, so a hefty repair bill can sometimes appear when you least expect it to.

If you’re a company that hires out equipment, monitoring engine hours can be a real challenge as you rely on third parties abiding by the contracts terms and telling you what use the equipment has had. And then there’s issue of knowing what fuel is being used and the consumption levels. If you’re a company hiring equipment on a daily or hourly rate, monitoring all of this can be a real headache.

But all these problems could be eradicated with the ability to have real-time, 24/7 visibility of equipment. And now your customers can have 24/7 visibility with the Go Rugged telematics device from Zest4.

A new addition to our range of M2M and IoT solution, our Go Rugged device enables users to keep their projects on-time and on-budget.

Construction operations are known to be dynamic, with multiple sites in operation, diverse assets in use and crew on-the-go all the time. The Go Rugged solution helps companies to track and maintain construction and heavy equipment vehicle assets, as well as providing key data insights and real-time information to help streamline operations and maximise profitability.

The Go Rugged telematics device has also been designed for operating in harsh, external conditions. The IP67 rated device is the ideal solution for tracking and monitoring heavy equipment, yellow plant, powered trailers and other heavy-duty assets.

The Zest4 Go Rugged solution gives operators real-time information and data including..

  • Complete visibility of the workforce, assets, and costs
  • Tracking of fuel usage and idling trends
  • Monitoring of engine hours and PTO usage
  • High-performance GPS technology
  • Advanced dashboard reports
  • Open platform for easy data integration

Uses and recommended deployments include…

  • Heavy equipment
  • Construction assets
  • Utilities
  • Oil, gas and mining
  • Farming
  • Trucks
  • Powered assets
  • Trailers and generators

If you’d like to find out more about providing this type of solution to your customer and generate long term revenue for your company, give me a call or speak to one of the sales team at Zest4. Call 0161 956 3355 or visit http://www.zest4.com/mobile.php

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