A crisis within an organization can be defined as a sudden disruption, whether it be an emergency event, technical failure, or another incident causing service to be interrupted for employees and clients. The process for dealing with these disruptions is called crisis management. If you're unsure as to what is crisis management and how your organization can prepare itself to deal with the impact of various crises, here are a few things you need to consider.
What is crisis management?
Crisis management is the steps an organization takes in order to deal with an incident affecting regular day-to-day operations.
Advance planning is a must
In order for your organization to be prepared to face any kind of service disruption, plans and processes must be developed to help with the mitigation of the potential crisis. Preparation is vital. You need to outline the procedures to be deployed and followed upon the onset of an incident. If your organization already has an idea of what it must do, the more efficiently it can move toward resolving the incident.
These plans and procedures should be documented and easily accessible to anyone who is responsible for managing incidents within the organization. An effective way to do this is to store these documents online. An incident management solution allows organizations to create, store, and maintain crisis plans right in the solution.
Once your organization has your crisis management procedures in place, it is essential that they remain up to date and relevant. Perform regular run-throughs with your organization to ensure they are familiar with the proper protocols and know what needs to be done when an actual incident occurs.
Proper notification ensures safety
Another important part of what is crisis management is effective notification of all stakeholders who may be affected by the incident. This could include employees of the organization, clients, and perhaps even members of the general public depending on the severity or reach of the crisis. A crisis communication plan should be created as part of your organization's advanced crisis planning so that as soon as an incident occurs, a primary alert notification can be sent out to all relevant contacts. Timely notification helps ensure contacts have enough time to get to safety if necessary.
Sending notifications can be made easier with the help of a communication software that can send bulk messages at the press of a button through multiple communication channels. Alert notifications can even be templated ahead of time to facilitate efficient sending. Choose a notification template, choose your contact lists and communication channels, and send. Collect data on who received the notification and who didn't and include this information in the crisis management report to be analyzed post-incident.
Follow up with contacts to provide updates
Knowledge is power. In addition to sending initial notifications to your contacts, part of your organization's crisis management strategy should be to provide regular updates on the ongoing incident. This will help prevent an inundation of questions coming into your organization that you will not want to take the time to respond to. Having to answer questions distracts you from fulfilling your responsibilities during the crisis, which in turn slows down the mitigation efforts and increases risks.
Set up and schedule follow-up notifications to send out over the same communication methods as the initial alert notification using the communication software. Alternatively, you can set up a dial-in system that will guide callers through a menu of the most frequently asked questions and provide them with the answers. The practice of providing updates goes a long way to preventing mass panic and reducing risks, thereby allowing emergency management staff to focus their efforts on providing an efficient and timely crisis management response.
Still wondering "What is crisis management?"
The process of crisis management will differ depending on the size and scale of the incident. An effective crisis management strategy can encompass many different elements to ensure proper mitigation and your organization should attempt to make itself aware of any possible eventuality.
The SimplyCast platform has the tools you need to develop these plans and processes and store them until they're needed. Our Event module can help you develop incident plan templates and store them until they are needed. Alerts can help you prepare and send mass notifications to your stakeholders to alert them of an incident and our IVR builder application can help you set up call tree menus to provide answers to those who call in.
If you are still unsure as to what is crisis management or are looking for an incident management system to help streamline your crisis management efforts, contact us today! Our team can answer any questions and help you find a solution to suit your needs!