Smart laundry set to revolutionise the care industry

Blog Image 1

As we speak, more devices are going online, connecting our world in ways we never imagined. But it’s not just our personal lives that are benefiting, the Internet of Things (IoT) is also set to significantly impact the care industry. From temperature controlled rooms, to fall detectors, IoT is beginning to revolutionise the way we run care homes. And if there’s one area that stands to get a bit easier - it’s laundry.

With strict regulatory standards to meet and costs to keep to a minimum, it is vital that a care home’s laundry is running to optimum levels, and if a fault should occur, it is resolved quickly and efficiently. Unfortunately, issues as simple as communication between staff and service providers or human error can make this a challenging task.  Until now…

Hampshire-based commercial laundry supplier, SLS, have launched a new range of smart washing machines and tumble dryers, which have been designed to reduce the cost and hassle of owning laundry equipment. The intelligent equipment can monitor and report every process and problem, providing SLS with a real-time view of what is actually happening. Information never before available, which means SLS will know if there is a problem before you do.

Here is a real life example SLS experienced recently; which would never have happened with smart laundry.                                                                         

It isn’t uncommon for a washing machine or dryer in a care home to have an issue at an unfortunate time.  For example, a machine is in use at 03.30am and the operator accidently leaves the dryer lint door slightly open, stopping the machine from running a cycle. In this instance, the operator may not recognise the issue and places an “Out of Order” card on the machine. 

The laundry staff arrive at 7:30am and notice the fault, so pass it to the admin team. At 9:00am the admin team arrive and report the issue to the service provider.

The engineer does their best to attend the call but has already been fully-booked for the day and makes it their first call in the morning.

The engineer arrives on site at 08:30am the following day and notices the lint door is slightly ajar. They firmly close the door and quickly test that the machine operates to specification.

As a result, the machine has been out of use for 24 hours and, regardless of warranty or rental contract, an invoice is generated as the fault was a non-mechanical issue falling outside the remit of most, if not all, contracts and warranties.

The introduction of smart laundry equipment from SLS would consign a scenario like this to history.

Instead, at the point that the night staff attempted to operate the dryer with the lint door open, an alarm would be triggered; which SLS are notified of in their support centre. The support team would then be able to quickly and easily identify the fault on the specific machine, along with the actions that led to it. Finally, all that is required is a simple call through to the care home to advise them of the remedy, ensuring the minimum possible amount of downtime, along with significant cost-savings.

To discover how your care home can benefit from SLS Connect and to view demonstrations of the latest machines, visit SLS, on stand 10010 at the Care & Dementia show.