Mining company uses rich seam of technology to gear up for COVID-19

Jun 1st, 2020

One of South Africa’s oldest mining companies has rolled out a high-tech thermal screening solution at one of its mines in Limpopo and at its Sandton head office as part of a wide-ranging initiative to protect its employees from the spread of COVID-19.

The solution, which was rolled out in record time by managed business solutions provider Itec Direct, will provide instant temperature screening of people passing  the various devices with no human contact, and flag any abnormalities with an alarm whilst also integrating to the access control system.

The company also used Itec to upgrade its video conferencing capabilities, rolling out cloud-based solution StarLeaf to connect more efficiently with its global partners and enable effective remote work in the face of the pandemic.

Itec Direct’s National Sales Manager, Elia Menezes, said the mine was one of many South African companies looking to technology tools to maintain ‘business as usual’ through the lockdown and beyond.

“Companies are being challenged on many fronts as they gear up to deal with the crisis: they have to keep their employees and clients safe, while giving their people the ability to stay connected working as close to normal as possible in the face of the pandemic. It’s clear that technology and cloud software tools can play a major role in the fight against COVID and keeping the business running,” said Menezes.

Menezes says technology companies are being challenged ‘like never before’ to turn around projects quickly and demonstrate availability and adaptability at this time. From site inspection to rollout, the temperature screening solution at the miner’s head office was installed within a matter of days, using Hikvision thermal bullet cameras and facial readers with temperature screening, to ensure it was in place before staff returned to work.

The StarLeaf installation had been planned before the pandemic struck, but its implementation was fast-tracked once the client was comfortable with the solution and its capabilities. StarLeaf allows users to connect across a range of platforms, regardless of location or device, and the existing tools they have in place. Its latest new features include the ability to integrate easily with Microsoft Teams.

“In this trying economic climate, adapting to new working environments and providing the right solutions to meet our clients’ ever-changing requirements is key. Maintaining an adaptive and collaborative approach with the customer is vital. Hard work and dedication from our Itec Direct Sales Account Manager, Natasha Introna, in collaboration with our project and installation teams, built a strong foundation in this long-term customer relationship,” said Menezes.