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7 Strategies for Clear Campus Communications During a Crisis

Reduce Noise and Minimize Misinformation

A recent article from the Washington Post highlighted the challenges colleges and universities face when communicating critical information during a crisis situation. Conflicting reports from social media, news outlets, campus services and friends can lead to unnecessary confusion and fear among students and staff. Having a system in place that notifies an entire campus during an emergency can help keep everyone safe.

Here are seven tips for providing clear communications to your campus during a crisis:

  1. Utilize a Single System - When a crisis occurs, time is of the essence. Safety and security personnel don’t have time to log in and out of different systems to send multiple messages. A single system that reaches everyone helps share vital information quickly.
  1. Reach Multiple Devices – Your system should reach landline phones, mobile devices, desktops and even digital displays. Every available device that can reach your campus population should be utilized to inform them of the situation.
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Topics: mass notification, What's New, Active Shooter, Higher Education

Streamlining Retail Communications with Mass Notifications

Provide Exceptional Customer Service

Online reviews and social media have made exceptional customer service an important touchstone of the retail experience. Mass notification systems give managers the tools their staff need to help customers and conduct daily functions more effieciently.

Facilitate Customer Calls

Many retail businesses have call systems that allow them to park incoming customers calls and page the proper department to answer questions, but certain systems go beyond this traditional method, to connect customers with the right person, faster. Look for a system that can centralize call management across all store locations. Make sure you have the ability to escalate and reroute a call if a customer query is not being answered. This service can lead to more in-store visits, increased sales and strengthened customer loyalty.

Utilize Park and Page for Customer Calls

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Topics: mass notification, Retail, customer service

Best Practices for Mass Notifications in Healthcare Environments

Learn from Others to Overcome Implementation Challenges

Utilizing a new system can be an overwhelming undertaking, especially in the healthcare field. But sometimes the best way to overcome these challenges is to learn from those who have already been through the process. This was the goal of our most recent healthcare users meeting. We enlisted the help of three current InformaCast users to share their experiences using the system.

Early Adopters Help Ease Transitions

When embarking on implementing a new system, the first obstacle can often be buy-in from staff and decision makers. Time and staff limitations make it seem easier to continue with what is currently in place, instead of trying to learn something new. Our panelists recommended piloting the system with one group who can then speak to its effectiveness to the rest of an organization. It’s also helpful to understand the pain points of end users, since they are not always aware of the questions they should be asking when new solutions are presented. Doing that legwork early in the process helps the adoption roll out smoothly.

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Topics: mass notification, healthcare, Emergency Notification

Does Your College Have a Social Media Crisis Management Plan?

College administrators have a unique challenge when it comes to communication. Unlike at grade schools, middle schools, and high schools, the staff and students you're trying to reach are often off-campus.

With the popularity of social media among college students, it is wise to have a social media crisis management plan to help communicate with people when they are on the go. Whether your crisis involves the safety of students or the reputation of your school, having a plan will help you respond quickly and efficiently. 

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Topics: campus emergency, emergency communication, mass notification, Hi-Ed, campus safety, Twitter

Don't Be Limited to One Type of Message - InformaCast Lets You Send Them All

describe the imageWhen you are sending a notification, the type of message you use is just as important as the message itself. Here’s an explanation of the four main types of messages and how each one applies to your notification needs:

  • Live: Live messages are great for everyday pages. Simply pick up the phone or hit the speaker button, select your recipients, and broadcast your message. The message goes out as you say it and is received immediately. Live messages are fast, simple, and effective for daily communication.
  • Ad Hoc: Ad hoc messages can be re-recorded if you mess up. This is critical, because it allows you to take time to consider and edit your message before you send it out. Erroneous information can be very dangerous given how connected people are. Prevent rumors with a little bit of editing.
  • Dynamic: Dynamic messages are good for an emergency that is in progress. A dynamic message includes up-to-date, specific, or changing information such as date, time, location, and weather advisories. Dynamic messages are often used in conjunction with pre-recorded messages to customize existing information.
  • Pre-Recorded: One of the most important things you can do to keep you and your people safe is prepare. Life is unpredictable, and we must expect the unexpected. Having a variety of pre-recorded emergency notifications can help save lives when time is of the essence. If you have InformaCast, when an emergency strikes, these messages can be triggered both automatically and via human intervention like pressing a panic/duress button.
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Topics: InformaCast, emergency communication, mass notification

Three Ways to Keep You and Your People Safe During a Weather Emergency

All eyes were on the northeast part of the nation this week as Hurricane Sandy ripped through New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut. The storm caused severe flooding, power outages, and wind-driven fires. It was a humbling reminder of the force of mother nature and the need for vigilance. Here are three things you can do to keep you and your people safe in any weather emergency.

StormBe informed and prepared: The preparations that take place before a weather emergency can have a huge impact on what happens during and after. One of the things that prevented Hurricane Sandy from being an even larger tragedy was that it was not a surprise. People were informed of when and where it would strike and had some time to prepare.

InformaCast's Inbound CAP Plugin lets you know when there is a weather concern in your area so you don't need to spend extra time and money monitoring for alerts. 

Just define the geographic area that is important to you, and InformaCast will automatically notify you when there is a weather concern in that area. InformaCast is configured to receive alerts from several organizations, including the National Weather Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and Department of Homeland Security. As soon as one of these organizations releases an alert that pertains to your area, InformaCast will let you know.  

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Topics: InformaCast, emergency communication, mass notification, Life-Safety, CAP, Weather Notification

Keep Your People Safe with InformaCast

The new guy who you’ve known for three days. Your first employee who you’ve known for a lifetime. Your coworkers, friends, confidants. The people in your care…When something happens, nothing matters more than keeping your people safe.

We can help you do that. We designed InformaCast with you and your people in mind. It will help you respond to any emergency with:

InformaCast allows you to notify people almost immediately with the touch of a button or an automatic notification. It can reach all of the people you need in a matter of seconds, whether you are communicating to 2 people or 2,000.

With a single point of activation, InformaCast can automatically send notifications via several different platforms – Jabber IM, Facebook, Twitter, Email, SMS text, computers, IP phones, IP speakers, and more – to help ensure the people you’re trying to reach will get your message. No matter where they are, InformaCast can help you reach them.

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Topics: InformaCast, mass notification, Emergency Notification, Life-Safety

Cheat Sheet: Emergency Notification Systems

Finding a mass notification system that fits your needs can seem like an overwhelming task. With the many options out there, it can be hard to know which one is right for you. To help you in your search, Campus Safety magazine recently released an emergency notification cheat sheet that lists the strengths and weaknesses of the most commonly used emergency alert systems on the market.

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Topics: InformaCast, mass notification, campus safety, Emergency Notification

Singlewire Software

Singlewire Software develops and supports innovative voice applications centered around secure, fast, and reliable mass notification capabilities. More →

Singlewire Software
2601 West Beltline Highway, Ste 510
Madison, WI 53713
Phone: +01 608 661 1140
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