Ryan McClean, Mway Comms. 

Ryan was the Health and Safety lead at Mway Comms and wrote this article to help other organisations operating in highways get the most from SkillGuard (branded as Highways Passport). He has since moved to work for Balfour Beatty.

The SkillGuard Messaging Module allows Contractors to directly message their virtually carded workforce, even if they’re sub-contracted. It works like this:

  1. Create a message on SkillGuard, add images, buttons and links
  2. Use filters to refine your audience
  3. Send your message – it lands in our app on your workers’ phones
  4. Use the reporting to keep track of it

What are the big advantages?

Without Passport Messaging, I send messages via email, text or phone call. I can never prove who has read what. This is a faffy way to do things, you have to create your own mailing lists, you can’t get any data from it, and you need the contact details of everyone you want to communicate with.

Compare this with Passport Messaging:

The simplicity

Creating a message is easy. The targeting and audience selection mean you can send a message to a specific group of people in a few minutes.

The analysis and record

Passport Messaging gives you the ability to send a message and see in detail who you’ve sent it to and whether they’ve followed a link, downloaded an attachment or clicked a button to respond.

This means you can chase people who haven’t responded.

If you need to prove a message was read and understood, then Passport makes that possible with its message reports.

Messaging people you’ve never been able to reach

You can target your messages to workers who have swiped onto a certain site. This means you can directly message workers in your sub-contracted workforce for the first time.

How might you use it?

Traffic management

Save your foreman hassle and send a message to everyone swiped onto a certain site to let them know traffic management is active and they can get to work.

Toolbox talks

The biggest thing for me is the ability to relay Toolbox Talks when the deadline is looming. I even use buttons to track whether content has been read and understood.

Safety briefings and accidentsHighways uk

Send out a bulletin with a safety notice or let workers know when different areas are closed.

Mental health check-ins

The value of Messaging for a mental health check-in is the buttons and links you can include.

They give workers an easy way to reach out or for you to direct them to the right resources.


Want more like this? Check out our recent webinar with Skanska’s health and safety lead on Digitising Workforce Management.

A lesson from my implementation

Don’t overdo it

If I expect my workers to read the messages, then it’s only fair if I show them some respect and don’t overdo it. Use the tool when the audit trail matters, when you need to reach your extended workforce or when the targeting would be especially useful.

Final thoughts

Passport Messaging is one of those rare moments where something that seems too good to be true, is actually really good. I’m getting huge benefits from it, it’s making my life easier, and I didn’t have to pay extra for it.

Use it, it’s great.


Want to see how other organisations are using SkillGuard in Highways? 

Click here to watch our case study with Skanska, exploring how they're using SkillGuard on their M42 Junction 6 improvement scheme. 

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