The Why and How of Emergency or Blast Notifications

by | Apr 14, 2021

Emergency notifications are an important, albeit little thought of planning tool that will be helpful to have in place when the need arises. This whitepaper will highlight 7 emergency situations that you can use an appointment reminder system for. What are your procedures when you close your office due to inclement weather? Did you know an appointment reminder system can notify all of your patients quickly? Download this whitepaper to learn about this and 6 other important scenarios.

Introduction 

Following this introduction, I will share several scenarios in which an emergency notification or blast messaging system could be needed and used. When I got to thinking about it, I realized the uses are endless however, and reading through this, I suspect you will find the same. If you don’t have the time to read all the scenarios, just skim through the scenario titles below, then skip to the end and find out how you can implement one today.  

If a particular scenario isn’t mentioned herein and you’re thinking, “I wonder if we could use an emergency notification system for _blank_,” the answer is probably, “Yes!” Read on, and see why. 

Problem Statement 

The need to contact many people at once is more of a challenge than it seems when you are the one who must unexpectedly do so.  In the past, some cultures used smoke signals and some today, still rely on drums.   

Previous Options 

Sometime, perhaps even in the last year, you may have wanted to send a brief sales announcement and ended up spending hours creating, printing, folding, and mailing a flyer.  

Tomorrow a building gas leak may mean that you must to rush to the office and put a “CLOSED” note on your door.  If you haven’t established a “telephone tree,” you’ll then need to call the employees and begin rescheduling appointments.  

Inphonite Solution 

Now, the ideas above belong to yesterday.  Today, the solution is InphoniteVoice, a reliable, cost-effective messaging system.  If you already use InphoniteVoice, you can simply edit reminder calls from the night before and cancel appointments with the click of a few buttons. You don’t even have to be at the office. 

If you don’t have InphoniteVoice doing reminder calls, you can still set up and have ready a state-of-the-art emergency notification system that can send many messages within a very short time.  

Read through the following scenarios or come up with your own and InphoniteVoice will cater to your needs.  

Scenario 1 Weather. 

It’s 6:00 a.m. 

Last night’s storm rolling through was bigger than anyone expected. Your employees can’t drive through four feet of snow, there are major power outages, and most of your appointments are going to be “no shows” anyway. It’s probably better to close the office for the day and hope that a few appointments can be handled by phone.  

You pull up your Inphonite account, make a few edits to last night’s calls,  

and set up a call saying, “My office is closed due to the weather. Please call 555-555-1212 to reschedule your appointment for later this week.”  

Thinking of that business meeting with the vendor, you select that contact, edit the message and send a Direct Message Tweet in Twitter saying, “Due to weather I won’t be in the office. Please call 555-555-1213 at our meeting time. I look forward to speaking with you.” 

Knowing your first appointment for the day has probably already left for your office, you highlight that person’s name in InphoniteVoice Contacts and send an SMS message saying, “I’m so sorry. Our offices are closed for the weather. Let’s reschedule.” 

You look at the clock, and it’s only 6:15. Job well done, InphoniteVoice.  

 Scenario 2 Vaccine Notification 

The new vaccine just arrived, and you ask your office staff to “call” every patient. They set up InphoniteVoice to say, “This is Dr. Smith’s office calling to let you know that we have the new flu vaccine. You may come in anytime during office hours; however, there may be a wait. If you prefer to schedule an appointment, press 2 now to speak to the operator.” 

Your patients start coming in, scheduling and getting vaccinated. You charge a nominal fee. It adds up, and you have healthy patients. As an added bonus, you just contacted those patients that haven’t been in for a long time and some of them call in for check-ups and refer family or friends for vaccines or appointments.  

Scenario 3 Outbound Sales 

You plan a huge sale for loyal customers and set up InphoniteVoice to call all previous customers and say, “This is Jim’s Store, and we are having a tent sale this Friday from 10-1. Mention this call, and you’ll get an additional 10% off your entire purchase.”   

Scenario 4 Virus Notification 

The CDC just announced that, “individuals experiencing flu-like symptoms should stay home.” Two employees already telephoned, saying they’d been diagnosed with the latest virus. They’ll stay home, but who knows how many are already infected?  You’ve already created emergency protocols, and it’s better to close the office and ask a select few employees to work from home.  

InphoniteVoice to the rescue. Pull up the database of employees, grab their cell phone numbers and send a message, “Due to recent CDC notifications and illnesses within our company, we are closing the office for the next seven days. If you have a question, please contact your manager directly.”  

Next, pull up the Managers’ contact information and send a message that, “Emergency protocol is in place. Please work from home for seven days. Your employees have been notified and may contact you. Watch your email for further details.” 

Scenario 5 Robbery  

You get to the office and realize there’s been a break-in. You call the police and learn they won’t arrive for at least an hour.  Your employees will arrive soon but won’t be allowed in before the premises are searched, photographs and measurements taken, and a lengthy interview conducted. 

Using your laptop, you log onto InphoniteVoice servers and send a quick text to all employees, “Offices burglarized. Please work from home. Will contact you when it’s safe to return.”  

Scenario 6 Campus Warnings 

A young woman rushes into the campus police having just been attacked. InphoniteVoice can send a message to everyone on campus to be on the lookout for the assailant. The police can blast a message: “This is a Campus Police Warning. Please be on the lookout for a stocky, white male, approximately 5’7” wearing baseball cap and navy sweatpants. Contact campus police at *5555 with any information.”  

The entire faculty and student body will know someone amiss is in their midst and can help to apprehend the criminal before they hurt someone else.  

Scenario 7 Student Absences 

A school attendance officer must call all parents or guardians who haven’t given prior notice of an excused absence and inform them of the student absence. This notification sometimes entails calling several different numbers and leaving messages. 

InphoniteVoice will call each household with a personalized message, “John/Jane is absent today. If s/he is ill, we would like to know his/her symptoms so we can monitor the well being of the overall student body. To leave a message confirming the reason for this absence, please press ‘1.’ If you prefer to speak directly to the attendance clerk, please press ‘0’ now.” The attendance duties are quickly completed, a record is established and the employee if available for additional tasks.   

Implementation 

Putting InphoniteVoice for emergency notifications to use in your office is simple. If you already use InphoniteVoice for your reminder calls, all you need to do is change a few of the settings and send out the messages with the rules you want, in the ways you want.  

If you prefer to purchase InphoniteVoice as a standalone option for emergency notifications and blast messaging, we will help you do that too, including setting up the contact information which can be exported from various sources, and then imported or entered individually. 

Summary 

The truth is, no one wants an emergency to occur. Our lives would be much smoother without them. However, with InphoniteVoice you can rest assured that those people who need to know something important, will be notified. With InphoniteVoice Reports you will also have the proof that each person was contacted. Cover all your bases with InphoniteVoice.  

If you don’t have InphoniteVoice or some other emergency notification service, you owe it to yourself to look into getting one. Should any of these, or a multitude of other scenarios occur, it is well worth it to be prepared.  

For more information on InphoniteVoice and how to make emergency notifications work for you, call 800-350-7693.