Even before 9/11 happened, businesses have always been wary of disasters that can strike anytime and hamper their operations. Weather disturbances, fire, and flooding can happen anytime. However, the terrorist attacks that happened in 2001 further underlined the need for companies to have mass notification systems in place.
Communicating with workers during an emergency situation can be extremely challenging. Employees are naturally scared and panicky during emergencies like fire or a terrorist attack. Directing them where to go to, or what to do, can be very challenging. But it is during these times that communication needs to be flawless and reliable.
Having a mass notification system can spell the difference between saving and losing lives, as the more people that can be notified about an impending danger means the more likely that they can be kept out of harm’s way. Moreover, mass notification systems can minimize the damage that disasters and emergencies can do to a business operation and related property.
Messages or alerts can be coursed through various channels, from cell phone, SMS text messages, emails, home phone, office phone and even pagers. The messages are delivered within seconds, ensuring that all targeted recipients can be reached regardless of their preferred means of contact.
Natural disasters can strike anytime and anywhere, although there are certain areas that are more prone to emergencies. For instance, the west coast of the United States particularly the state of California is naturally predisposed to earthquakes. The east coast, on the other hand, is prone to blizzards. Businesses in the south and Midwest, meanwhile, can be hit hard by tornadoes.
Companies that are located in these areas should have mass notification systems in place to warn their employees about upcoming weather disturbances like blizzards or tornadoes. Through the said system, a warning can be delivered to all employees at work, advising them that work has been cut short. Or a message can be sent to all members of the company’s disaster response unit about the said turbulence, instructing them to be on standby.
After an earthquake, a message can be delivered through the mass notification program to check on the status of their personnel who are in the building or in other locations when the tremor hit. Sending a message through a mass notification system can enable business owners and disaster coordinators to calm nervous employees and more importantly, instruct them how and where to evacuate.
Most of the time, immediate response of authorities like the police and medical team can control prevent an emergency situation from worsening. The faster that trained support arrives at the workplace, the better the odds that the crisis can be controlled. Mass notification systems can also instantly alert local authorities to speed up response times, resulting to professionals evaluating and resolving situations fast.
An emergency notification system is also very useful in campuses, which have been badly hit by shooting incidents in the past few years. Through such platform, students, teachers, parents, and school personnel can be informed of any intrusion. Better yet, authorities can be immediately informed about the incident which can possibly reduce the likelihood of any lives being taken.
Continuance of Business Operations
Company properties like vehicles, computers and other equipment can be properly sheltered and secured once employees in charge of taking them are promptly warned of an impending disaster like torrential rains, or floods.
Businesses can also announce minor inconveniences like power and water outages to their personnel, who can make the necessary adjustments to ensure that business operations continue.
Emergency notification systems can also create a centralized command center that can bring back order to a distressed workplace. This is very important because panic can quickly lead to chaos in the building during an emergency scenario, like an armed man intruding company premises.
But with a message delivered through the emergency notification system, every individual in the company can be briefed on the crisis. Messages like instructions on where to evacuate should enable leaders of the company’s crisis control team to take back control of a tensed situation.
Tips in Shopping for an Emergency Notification System
Procurement units shopping for an emergency notification system should not only look at the cost of the product, but also on other factors like monthly and maintenance fees that the vendor may charge. They should also look at the features of the notification system, as well as the forms of notifications that it can support. Moreover, the program or system should automatically be linked to local police for immediate response during emergencies.
Mass notification systems have become very important in today’s corporate world, as companies need to be prepared all the time to ensure the safety and well-being of their employees. These programs can also minimize damage to property and lessen the impact of crisis on business operations.