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Are we overconfident? – Part 3

Let’s review what we know so far:

1. Sometimes we take more risks if we have a safety net than if we didn’t. As a result, we break even. (See Part 1.)

2. Incident notification systems reduce the risk of communication breakdowns in an emergency, but if we over-rely on the technology without doing due diligence vis-a-vis the people, processes, and messaging, we shoot ourselves in the foot. (See Part 1.)

3. Tweeting and posting are great, but if we use social media as our only means of communicating, we do a huge disservice to the legions of people who are not active users.(See Part 2.)

Assumption #3. “Our data is fine.”Keeping contact data up-to-date is like playing Pin-the-Tail-on-the-Donkey, only it’s a real donkey and it’s not happy and you are still blindfolded. Yes, data management can be a greater challenge than most people realize, and the middle of a crisis is the worst possible time to notice your data is sketchy at best. Often, you have limited information at best to start with, and employees, citizens, students, and others are constantly moving, changing cell phones, emails, and other information. So how do we remedy this challenge?

• Automate, automate, automate. Integrate emergency notification systems with internal HR databases, ERP systems, and other systems of record to ease the burden of ongoing data management challenges.

• Supplement with easily accessible portals where people can manage their own contact information, provide additional contact paths, and select contact preferences so you have the best chance of reaching them most quickly.

• Send out reminders to update contact information at least quarterly to keep data fresh.

Things that make you go, Hmmm. Here’s how Everbridge handles varying data management needs Download the Everbridge Contact Data Management PDF under “Learn More” to get this overview plus five questions to ask when building your data management strategy.

In our next and final post in this series, we’ll examine Assumption #4: “We’ve tested our plan, and we’re ready.”

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