It’s important to review the lessons learned from this unfortunate event and take action on them to continuously improve our processes. Key changes that have been implemented or are being developed include:
- Training and Staffing — The training program for the operators has been improved. New processes have been developed to assess the skill levels of each operator and provide targeted training accordingly. New employees receive the necessary training before they are placed on shifts where limited support from experienced operators is available. In addition, staff has been instructed that if telecommunication’s leadership is unavailable during a major event, they are empowered to reach out to other team members for assistance. We also are exploring technology that would enable off-duty operators to connect from home and assist in handling additional call volumes.
- Improved Communication — During emergencies, instructions to the operators can come from many areas. It’s important that these are coordinated. Telecommunications and security leadership have begun working closely together to identify ways they can improve communication and avoid conflicting information. The hotline for team members that was established remains in service and can be updated quickly for events such as the Pulse nightclub incident, hurricanes, etc. Evaluations of a mass communication system are underway to see if that technology would benefit the organization.
- Simplified Processes — Since the Pulse nightclub incident, the organizational structure of the telecommunications department has been reviewed and an information systems liaison hired. One of this team member’s responsibilities is to work closely with our call system software provider to streamline the steps needed for emergency notifications and develop templates that will make it easier for the operators to easily and quickly send out accurate information.