Emergencies and disasters can strike at any time, often when you least expect them. In most circumstances you will have no warning at all that an emergency situation is about to unfold.
As an employer, you have a duty of care to keep your employees safe and this includes during emergency situations that your business could find itself in the midst of.
Building fires, man-made disasters, terror attacks, active shooters, gas leaks, earthquakes and other natural disasters are just some of the situation that could befall your organization. And when any of these events take place, you need to act very quickly to save lives and prevent injuries.
DeskAlerts is an internal communications software solution that primarily works by sending pop-up notifications straight to employees’ computer desk tops and can be used to send emergency alert notifications.
This powerful tool is deliberately disruptive and cuts through the communications clutter of the modern workplace, appearing on user screens in a way that cannot be ignored, skipped or minimized. Messages appear even if computers are in screensaver or standby modes.
This means that no matter what computer programs your employees are using, they will get the message, making it a much more reliable medium than email. When every second counts and it is a matter of life or death, DeskAlerts is the obvious choice.
DeskAlerts is generally accessed by an easy-to-use interface hosted on your business’ server, designed to be user friendly and operated by people with the most basic of computer skills.
However when there is an emergency, there might not be time to log in to the computer and create and send an emergency notification. There might only be, literally, seconds to get the message out.
Send life-saving messages, instantly
Fortunately, DeskAlerts has a solution for this in the form of an app and a “panic button” that allows you to send a pre-defined message to a pre-defined audience without the need to log in to the system at all. The alerts can be send directly from a special shortcut saved to the computer desktop or from a separate iPhone or Android mobile phone app.
In the DeskAlerts dashboard you are able to create a virtual “panic button” that enables you to simply press send in order to send out emergency notifications about critical situations.
For the system to work effectively, you need to pre-make templates ahead of time so you can quickly inform your employees about a threat or incident when it occurs, allowing you to save time.
You are able to customize the templates including titles, colors and text and even insert images or video files. For example, you can include maps that show emergency exits and assembly points, or videos that provide a walk through of what to do.
Sending emergency notifications from a mobile phone app can be extremely useful in a crisis situation. There are a number of reasons why someone may not be able to get to their desk to send emergency notifications to other employees, for example if fire or explosion have made it impossible or the person sending the alert may come to the attention of an active shooter or terrorist if seen using their computer.
The DeskAlerts mobile app is installed on either an iPhone or Android and is literally then in that person’s pocket so they can easily send notifications to other staff.
The DeskAlerts app can be installed on employees’ smartphones and tablets, allowing them to get push notifications about events such as an emergency straight to these devices… so even if they aren’t at their desks and are in meetings or offsite they can still be alerted to an emergency situation.
Different levels of users have different access permissions. For example admin is generally given to the people with the most technical expertise, such as your IT department, while the role of publisher – someone who creates and sends the actual alerts – can be given to a wide range of staff who might need the access.
Communications staff, human resources, IT help desk and facilities management employees may be identified as appropriate publishers of emergency notifications. You can also allocate these permissions to employees who have designated emergency response roles within your organization such as fire wardens or floor wardens. Sending mock emergency notifications can form part of your fire drills and other emergency planning exercises and scenarios.
You can continue to send alerts through the system as the situation develops or changes, keeping your employees up-to-date with the latest information about the threat.
Some emergency situations do come with a bit of warning such as hurricanes and severe weather events. You can still use the DeskAlerts emergency notification system to notify your staff about these potential natural disasters and the expected impact it may have on your organization.
This can include providing instructions about what measures your staff can take ahead of the disaster to protect your property and assets, or if they need to make alternative work arrangements and not attend your offices if it is to dangerous to do so.
When an emergency situation threatens your workplace and happens outside of regular work hours, the DeskAlerts mobile app is very useful to keep your employees informed. For example you may need to advise people not to attend the office the next day if there has been a fire or flood.
You can also send alerts to employees who work in other offices and geographic locations letting them know that there has been a disaster at another one of your offices and that staff may be difficult to reach in the interim, and advise of what measures are in place while that office is out of commission.