What is a Mass Notification System & Why Should You Care? - Voyent Alert!

What is a Mass Notification System & Why Should You Care?

What do floods, fires, and earthquakes have in common with your garbage removal schedule, maintenance notices or road closures? You don’t often see these disruptions coming. 

Every day, critical events impact our productivity, cause delayed responses or require immediate outreach to team members or external parties. That’s where a mass notification system comes in handy. 

A mass notification system keeps people safe, informed, and engaged by sending messages to individuals, groups, or large populations in a short time frame.

Unlike breaking news flashes and radio broadcasts that were effective in the past, getting the word out today demands crafting the right message at the right time–and doing so for targeted audiences on the proper channels. If you skip this step, you risk your audience tuning you out.

Why’s that? Because sending a one-size-fits-all message doesn’t cut it anymore. 

Our digital world depends on mobile accessibility, so we expect instant, seamless, and personalized communication. 

Organizations and users can respond critically to mother nature’s impact and prioritize their day-to-day actions to navigate interruption, such as road closures or community events. An intuitive platform such as a mass notification system allows them to send and receive relevant messages that save them time, money, and potentially, even lives

 

Mass notification system for employee safety
Mass notification system for remote workers
Mass notification system for emergency alerts

What does an effective mass notification system need?

Building a mass communication platform may seem simple enough, but there’s a lot more that goes into it, regardless if it’s for an emergency or not. 

These are the functions that create a robust alerting platform:

  1. Send and receive messages
  2. Target individual audiences
  3. Craft the right message with customizable templates
  4. Notify all parties involved or impacted
  5. Access alerts from any mobile device, no matter your location
  6. Fast outgoing and incoming notifications
  7. Simple user interface
  8. Automation to reduce errors
  9. Multi-channel touchpoints (calls, texts, social media integration)
  10. Confirm messages are sent, delivered and acknowledged
  11. Customer support
  12. Internal & external system integrations

Streamlined decisions from start to finish 

From the moment something happens, your organization needs to have the infrastructure and tools in place to sound the alarm, escalate internal and external communications, and mitigate the problem. 

In these time-sensitive situations, you can’t afford to dilly dally. The pressure’s on, and that’s why a simplified, user-friendly app can help you streamline the appropriate next steps–and take a bit of the edge off. 

Mass notification systems need to be available wherever you are, whether you’re at a desk or away, so you can quickly log in, send your message, and get in front of the action. 

For team members on-site, it’s essential to have the ability to interpret the situation, coordinate with each other by sending and receiving messages from various locations, and help response teams by providing valuable real-time updates on what’s going on.

Hit send with the right message and audiences

When you’re racing against the clock, decision-making needs to be precise. Mass notification systems with built-in alert templates for various event incidents can help you optimize the right message in less time.

Incidents can include air quality advisories and crime watch to facility closures, floods, and more. A well-designed system should also provide you with the tools to customize your message even further by selecting your recipients by location and adding map links to available muster points or any additional resources.

By targeting communications to specific teams within your organization, mass notification systems can deliver refined messages across one, some or all available channels simultaneously.

But it’s not enough to just communicate your message through text message. Robust systems will have multi-channel touchpoints to cover all the bases, including mobile app push notifications, emails, voice-to-landline or cell phone alerts, and even social media integration to publish messages on the appropriate accounts.

Automated actions decrease the chances of errors

Speed saves, but it can also trigger mistakes. You’ll want to minimize your chances of error, such as sending a message to the wrong recipients or missing vital information in your alert. 

Thankfully, you don’t need to sacrifice speed for accuracy. A comprehensive mass notification system should come with a slew of automation features to cut down your manual efforts and ensure correct, high-quality messaging from the time you press send to when you’re in the clear.

Automation features can include checkpoints that flag missing information, catch errors or demand administrative review. You can field recipient lists based on locations or severity of the event and grant permissions to specific individuals on your team to change your communication.

Who are mass notification systems for?

Every day people are affected by interruptions. Whether you work in a municipal office, are at the scene of a major pipe burst, or on a university campus, communication between your recipients and team members is crucial to keeping everyone safe, informed, and engaged.

Municipalities or Counties

If you work in a municipal office or represent a town or city, you know how much your citizens depend on you for the most up-to-date and relevant information. 

Mass notification systems can be a gamechanger in the way you deploy your public announcements, whether it’s about anticipating road work, fire bans, water advisories, or more.

Community Alerting Notifications - Road Closure

Government

While life-and-death situations are real, they’re rare. Federal and provincial governments deploy their own communications across sweeping geographies and populations, usually limiting messages to emergency alerts, amber alerts, and weather warnings.

Seldom do they target audiences more acutely than at the municipal level with non-emergency notifications. But it’s precisely these instances where government bodies can benefit from targeting specific areas across or within their jurisdiction with timely, relevant information that may impact their constituents’ daily lives.

Mass notification system for government

Corporate Businesses

Communication is challenging enough without getting a handle on all the modes to talk to your staff. But when you juggle voice, text, emails and various other channels, chances are some things get lost in translation. Toss in the added barriers of remote work, and it can seriously restrict your workflow and productivity.

A mass notification system can aggregate all the piecemeal data you have into a single, reliable platform that catches every connection.

Mass notification system for employee safety and business continuity

First Responders

In matters of life and death, few people are more critical than those who show up to respond to the scene of an incident. If you’re a first responder, people count on you to help them survive through some of the worst moments of their lives. 

Instant verbal communication and alerts allow you to mitigate the impact of those affected to make your job easier.

Mass notification system for first responders

Your all-in-one solution: Voyent Alert!

Paint an accurate picture with Personalized and Enriched Alerts

Anyone can send a text, but what’s between the lines? Voyent Alert! allows you to deliver visually engaging and personalized alerts to your recipients, giving them that extra bit of context to inspire informed decision-making in both times of crisis or to complement your day-to-day activities.

Imagine being a first responder on the scene or a remote worker in the field, and you need to alert the rest of your team on your whereabouts. Plain texts won’t give you the visual details you need to paint an accurate picture of the consequences ahead or convey the urgency.

Voyent Alert! leverages map-based alerting to signal visual cues such as images, documents or turn-by-turn directions to your recipient in Google Maps.

Mass notification system for site evacuations and emergency alerts
Mass notification system for community alerts and road closurese

Stay connected and informed with Two-way Communication and Receipt 

Real-time insights go a long way in resolving or mitigating emergency events and everyday disruptions. Voyent Alert! makes it easy to consume critical information and make smarter decisions on the best course of action.

With two-way communication, administrators can relay messages to employees, first responders or citizens using pre-loaded responses and receive instant feedback through a digital dashboard.

All that goes into it is selecting the desired message type and embedding the questions they want along with their alert. Administrators can identify when their message has been read using a simple read-receipt poll.

Pinpoint where your message goes and who it goes to with Advanced Geofencing

Forget about message fatigue or apathy, where people automatically ignore your message because it’s not relevant to them. Geofencing allows you to define your target audience based on a precise region so that the messages you send always have a stake in the recipient’s life since it’ll directly impact them and not others.

Advanced Geofencing helps personalize mass notification systems

Go where your users go with Multiple Location Following

Identify locations that matter to you. Whether it’s your mom’s house or your child’s school, you’ll want to know if there’s anything disruptive going on in those areas. Receive instant alerts the moment an event or activity impacts those marked locations.

The future of safety & community engagement

Having the right communication solution is more important now than ever. From informing your employees about site incidents to alerting students on active shooters or updating tenants about maintenance schedules, our reaction time can be the difference between making a bad situation worse or resolving incidents quickly. Mass notification systems are fit for the job to help many organizations and communities that depend on maintaining a proactive and safe environment.

Interested in learning more? Contact one of our team members for a free demo, so you can see if our solution fits your needs. 

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