5 Emergency Notification Tips for Effective Crisis Communication in Government Facilities

When you’re experiencing an emergency, it is imperative that you reach everyone, everywhere with timely and clear alerts. Communication isn’t always easy, especially in most high-traffic government facilities. Emergency professionals have to deal with a lot of moving parts - staff, contractors, visitors, and more. This is where Emergency Notification Systems (ENS), (also often referred to as Mass Notification Systems or MNS), can help.

Here are five ways ENS can instantly improve crisis communication in your government facility.


1. Planning Ahead with
Notification Templates

Proper emergency preparedness means making sure you take the time to plan ahead for any potential threat. Government organizations can immediately improve their preparedness by creating prewritten, actionable alerts, and specific groups to receive those alerts through their emergency notification system. This saves emergency personnel critical time when it comes to sending out emergency alerts. Historically, ENS has cut response times by more than half and can activate thousands of devices in mere seconds. Check out our Alertus Response Times Infographic to learn how ENS can take your crisis response down to record times.

Learn more about Preset Alert Variables


2. Audience Targeting

Many emergencies your organization might face either won’t affect the entire building or may be too sensitive in nature to broadcast to everyone. Being able to target specific departments or groups in your building is extremely important when sending out messages to your organization. Creating detailed groups within your ENS allows dispatchers to send targeted alerts to only those who may be impacted.

Learn more about the Alertus Mobile App Suite


3. Facility-Based Notification

Issues often arise when there are gaps in your alerting structure. For example, if your government organization is a courthouse and an emergency occurs, the odds are many people in the building will be in a courtroom and without access to their mobile phones. So how will you make sure they receive vital information? This is where facility- based ENS is an important resource to reach everyone with critical information when a crisis occurs.  Facility-based ENS can integrate with your organization’s existing infrastructure and technology, which can include desktop computers, PA systems, VoIP phones, digital signage, fire panels, and more, creating a simple, single-point of activation for all solutions.

Learn more about ENS Alertus Solutions

alert beacon in a hallway

4. Audible and Visual Notifications

Making sure that your government building ENS is able to accommodate individuals with special needs, including deaf and hard-of-hearing, is critical in enhancing your notification reach and effectiveness. Sending notifications over a Public Address (PA) system is one of the most common, fastest, and effective means of getting your information out to large areas. However, installing PA systems into existing infrastructure is often cost prohibitive for most organizations. Having an ENS that provides an affordable way to deliver both audible and visual notifications across existing endpoints using solutions such as Text-to-Speech (TTS) technology and Alert Beacons, increases the chances that your emergency alert will reach everyone.

Watch the Alertus Alert Beacon Activation

5. Severe Weather Alert Integration

Government organizations need to be aware of severe weather in order to operate smoothly. Feed integrations like Alertus ThreatWatcher (retrieves and processes alert data from multiple external sources including NOAA weather alerts, general CAP and EDXL-DE alerts) can automatically send out alerts without user intervention. It can also be customized for site-specific warnings and instructions.

ThreatWatcher Delivers:

  • Accurate warnings to better prepare your organization in the event of severe weather

  • Mission-critical, up-to-the-minute warnings when severe weather threatens human lives and safety, facilities, or business assets

  • Faster lead time to allow for safe and timely sheltering in the event of severe weather

  • Fewer false alarms

  • The ability for users to better plan for inclement weather

Using a feed integration like ThreatWatcher eliminates the need for human interaction or input which reduces errors and saves valuable time.

Learn more about Severe Weather Awareness

Rachel Choppin