How to Solve the Most Common Emergency Notification Problem

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A Common Emergency Notification Problem

When it comes to emergency notification there is one issue that every organization struggles with: How do they ensure that everyone receives the information they need to stay safe? You can’t control what other people do. You can’t force them to be looking at their mobile phone at the exact moment you send a mass SMS text message. You can’t assume they’ll be at their desk to receive a phone call. And you can’t control the hundreds of other possible circumstances that might cause someone to miss your message. So, what do you do?

While it’s almost impossible to guarantee 100 percent reach when sending out an alert, there are a number of steps organizations can take to help improve the chances that everyone receives an emergency notification. In this blog post, we’ll outline what those steps are and how it can improve your organization’s overall emergency communication plan.

Reach the Right Audience

Before figuring out how you can reach everyone, you need to understand when you want to reach them. Best practice is not to leave anyone out of the loop in an emergency situation, but depending on your organization, and the type of event taking place, it may be more prudent to alert a select group of people before alerting your entire organization. Understand the scenarios your organization needs to prepare for first, then determine the best way to reach the right audience for each event. This will help you identify any gaps you may have in your emergency notification plan.

Prepare for any emergency by answering these 6 questions

Avoid a Siloed Approach

If you do have gaps, your first instinct may be to look for additional hardware or systems that can help expand your reach. This can be pricey and, even worse, can occasionally be detrimental to your ultimate goal of reaching everyone. With more systems to activate during an emergency, you’re wasting time that could be better spent managing the situation. Separate tools may need separate permissions, so in addition to understanding who you want to reach, you need to understand the best way to reach them.

Learn why a siloed approach doesn’t work

It’s important to understand where people are most likely to see and hear an emergency message. Many organizations think that just sending a mass SMS text message blast is sufficient, but research has shown this is rarely the case. You need to look beyond mobile phones and consider on-premises devices that can be leveraged as well as messaging tools your people may already be using for day-to-day operations. This can also be more cost-effective because you add value to existing solutions instead of investing in new ones.

Build Your Ecosystem

So, where does that leave you? Instead of looking for independent solutions that only cover one communication channel, implement a solution that ties everything together behind the scenes. Ultimately, you want to have a system in place that requires you to press a button and send messages directly to the audience you want to reach, whether it be an entire organization or a specified group. The right mass notification system can help you do just that.

Devices like IP speakers, overhead paging, digital signage, desk phones, mobile phones desktop computers and more, can all be used to communicate messages. When used in conjunction with email notifications, and notifications that can reach collaborative tools like Microsoft Teams and Cisco Webex Teams, you’re reducing the chances someone misses a message. By utilizing as many channels and formats as possible including live intrusive audio as well as visual alerting like flashing lights and scrolling text, your organization can fulfill its duty of care by knowing it is pushing out messaging that grabs people’s attention via every means available.

Begin building your mass notification ecosystem

 

 

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