Getting More From Your Mass Notification System

Advances in modern technology continue to improve how we interact with each other and the world around us. We continue to see the development of better ways to complete both individual and organizational tasks faster and more efficiently with new or upgraded technologies.

As old concepts take new shape, archaic systems and products are replaced with more advanced versions. Additionally, many new technologies that were originally designed for one application are beginning to cross over into new areas. Following suit, security technologies offer several new options and capabilities that go beyond the typical uses in traditional applications.

3 Delivery Models Currently Popular

An emergency notification system’s primary objective is to disseminate one-way communication to individuals or groups of individuals in the event of an emergency. They provide the fastest way to deliver a message to the masses when a crisis situation arises. However, with advances in software technology, emergency notification systems have taken on a much broader scope of functionality.

In addition to possessing the ability to send an intelligible audio broadcast to an enabled emergency phone located on campus, integrated software technology is making it possible for hospitals and universities to segment messages geographically and demographically. The software also makes it possible to collect responses in real-time and tracks the data for future reports. Officials can access the cloud-based application to create customized messages using a template-based rapid notification feature.

Three delivery models for a mass notification platform are available, including hosted software, on-premise or a hybrid of the two. The future looks especially bright for the cloud-based version that is available as a software-as-a-service (SaaS). The hosted application is available off-site where users can gain instant access to send alerts from a mobile or Web app through real-time connectivity to the Internet. The hosted platform requires no hardware or software installation.

The software technology allows campus officials to send thousands of notifications through SMS, e-mail and phone call almost instantly. Likewise, recipients can respond via those same methods. 

College Alert Systems Used for Daily Communications

The comprehensive, multilayer mass notification solution is empowering educational institutions with new ways to use their existing communication tools beyond typical security functions. Let’s explore some of the creative ways notification platforms are helping educational institutions maximize their emergency communication systems.

While colleges and universities embraced mass notification technology early on as a way to send out emergency messages to students, staff and visitors, the NFPA 72 2010 changes are making it possible for emergency communication systems to also broadcast non-emergency messages. Emergency communication systems aren’t just for emergencies anymore. In fact, many colleges and universities rely on mass notification to streamline day-to-day communications.

For example, campuses are using mass notification to alert faculty members about meeting updates; alert students if a class venue has changed, remind them of approaching or shifting deadlines, special events or a change in office hours.

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Campus Safety magazine is another great resource for public safety, security and emergency management professionals. It covers all aspects of campus safety, including access control, video surveillance, mass notification and security staff practices. Whether you work in K-12, higher ed, a hospital or corporation, Campus Safety magazine is here to help you do your job better!

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