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Case Study: Gentoo – Frontline Protection


  • Gentoo’s frontline community services staff regularly work within situations involving a higher level of risk
  • We provided Gentoo with our RedAlert Fob due to the easy access and discreet nature of the device
  • Our service provides their staff with 24/7 security and the confidence to operate efficiently within their day-to-day roles

Our Team – Dianne Hanby

Meeting Our Customers’ Needs

Gentoo’s community services team regularly work with victims of domestic abuse and anti-social behaviour which can often involve a higher level of risk. As staff members often work alone or in pairs, Gentoo required a lone worker solution to help protect their staff in the event of a threatening situation or emergency.

After initial consultation and a full review of Gentoo’s individual needs, we advised that our RedAlert Fob would be most appropriate for their team due to the easy accessibility and discreet nature of the device. The RedAlert Fob is a fully compliant and accredited BS8484 solution, that when activated, will alert our 24/7 ARC (Alarm Receiving Centre) team to respond appropriately to the situation. Our ARC team have direct Police control room access and will bypass 999 services, saving valuable time in the case of an emergency for their frontline staff.

Providing Real Solutions

Gentoo required a cost effective, reliable solution to their lone worker needs and staff members were particularly impressed with the lightweight, discreet nature of the device along with the ease of operation. Gentoo issued the Fobs to approximately 550 members of their staff across the Group, which included Housing Managers, Support Officers, Anti-Social Behaviour Officers, Maintenance teams, Customer Care teams and staff from its Compliance teams.

Our ARC team will support any Red Alert activations with an emergency response, but on occasions when staff may just feel vulnerable in a situation, they can speak to our team under our ‘Owner Concerned’ service which enables our ARC Operator to stay with the user until they feel in a safer situation. This reassures staff members that our team are available to support them 24/7/365 no matter what the situation may be.

Results That Matter

We provide Gentoo with a lone worker service that gives their staff the added confidence and peace of mind to be able to operate efficiently within their day-to-day roles. Our service also ensures compliance with their insurers and provides the team with a 24/7/365 support service

Our online Sentry Portal allows Managers access to all aspects of their lone worker team including device utilisation, user information, activations and downloadable reports, which are vital for managing and maintaining the safety of their team.

Employees who have access to these types of devices, can feel much safer and more confident within their day-to-day roles. High-risk jobs such as these are just one area where we can help to make a real difference.

About Gentoo

Gentoo are a housing association that provides more than 60,000 people in Sunderland with a place they can call home. They are a values driven organisation, with a clear vision, a social purpose and a commitment to investing in people and their safety, place and property. Gentoo believe everyone has the right to live in a good quality home they can afford and invest millions of pounds every year in keeping our existing homes safe, secure, and compliant.

Gentoo also play their part in addressing the UK housing crisis locally, by building hundreds of new, modern and contemporary homes for rent in Sunderland – homes that meet the needs of local people , provide vital housing and support their tenants, residents and communities by investing in services that help people live their best possible life. This includes helping people into work, victims of domestic abuse and anti-social behaviour, young people to live independently, as well as a wellbeing service that supports elderly tenants and residents. Find out more at –

Q&A with Gentoo

What are your key benefits of our lone worker service?

The device is small, lightweight and can be carried easily. It’s relatively easy to use and the fobs give our staff the reassurance that they can speak to someone quickly in the event of an emergency or if they feel unsafe whilst working alone.

Can you provide an example of how your team use our service?

Our staff use the SOS Alarm fob devices on a daily basis while visiting customers in their own homes. They use the amber alert function before entering a property and then terminate the system when they leave. If they feel unsafe at any stage, they can activate the red alert quite easily to get assistance. There have been a number of occasions where our lone workers have activated the red alert. The team at Orbis are very professional and have proven that this system works very well.

Would you recommend our lone worker service to others?

Yes, we would definitely recommend Orbis as the contract and systems were delivered and set up on time, the fobs are excellent value for money and any questions have been answered in a timely manner and with very good customer service.


“The team at Orbis are very professional and have proven on a number of occasions that this system works very well.“

Julie Knox, Communications Manager, Gentoo Group

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