When an emergency occurs, what does your organization do? How does it react to a crisis? How prepared are the members of your company to act in the face of disasters?
Tragedy strikes at the most inopportune time, taking everyone by surprise. As a result, chaos ensues and disorder resigns supreme. If a tragedy were to hit a business, operations would halt, causing the business losses in productivity and revenue. Not only does a crisis affect business outcomes; it also endangers lives. It is only proper for you to equip your organization with a notification system that will allow you to deliver emergency broadcast system alerts.
The Challenge of Emergency Broadcast System Alerts
Deploying an emergency alert system is a good move toward creating an effective disaster preparedness plan. However, deploying a system is not enough; what you need is a high response to your emergency broadcast system alerts. Unfortunately, we live in a world that is inundated with information – there is social media, for one, and then there are emails, text messages, phone calls, written memos. Small wonder people – including your staff – can hardly be bothered with even more notifications. The biggest challenge your disaster preparedness strategy faces is getting your employees’ attention and conveying a sense of urgency that will drive them to respond and take appropriate action.
Are your employees ignoring your alerts and notifications? As a business owner, you must not take this sitting down. Here are some suggestions that can help you increase the urgency of your emergency broadcast system alerts and make your staff pay attention:
1. Be redundant. Under normal circumstances, repetition can be very annoying. However, you cannot take your chances during times of emergency. Therefore, you must be persistent in delivering your alerts by using multiple channels and by sending alerts multiple times. The more redundant your messages are, the more urgent the situation appears.
2. Be clear and concise. There is a reason an SMS is composed only of 160 characters: brevity. So compose your message as briefly as you can. Avoid abbreviations or jargons and be clear about explaining the situation.
3. Deploy communication tools. While human interaction remains the best form of communication for some people, it cannot be depended upon during tragedy. Many people will be on the move, and will be very difficult to get in touch with. Therefore you must leverage technological tools in order to reach them and lead them to safety.
4. Use voice alerts. SMS and email alerts work well, but a voice alerts sound more urgent and can be used to drive a higher response rate. Generally, individuals who receive one voice alert respond better than those who have get three or more SMS alerts. This is because voice nuances can help your recipients note the urgency of the situation, which cannot be conveyed through SMS or email alerts.
5. Develop trust in the community. Trust is the glue that holds people together. In disasters, it becomes even more important, when the message of bringing people to safety becomes very urgent. An informed employee can verify the information being sent and direct others’ attention to the message so everyone can take action.
More than all the technological tools put together, personal interaction still should be top, which is why you as a business leader must encourage peer-to-peer interaction. When human interaction is present, every emergency broadcast system alert becomes more effective.
Take complete charge of the situation when disaster strikes: make use of an effective emergency notification system and increase the rate of response by increasing the urgency of the messages you send.