Enterprise Networking: Emergency Notification Systems: 10 Factors to Consider When Buying One

By Chris Preimesberger  |  Posted 2012-02-01 Print this article Print
1. Performance

1. Performance

Your organization may need to alert tens, hundreds or thousands of people affected by an event. Look at a notification system's track record of actual performance during real events. Examine: How many messages are sent through the network per month and year? What is the system's capacity potential across multiple notification touch points simultaneously, such as voice, SMS and email messaging? Compare the results to assess the performance capabilities that you need.
2011 is being commonly referred to as "The Year of Disasters." The United States set a record with 12 separate billion-dollar weather/climate disasters in 2011, with an aggregate damage total of approximately $52 billion, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. These incidents have prompted many organizations to reconsider the human element during a crisis or major news event and evaluate how they communicate with employees, suppliers, investors and customers. Emergency and mass notification systems are designed to help organizations communicate to stakeholders during an incident or disruption. However, in response to the high occurrence of prominent disasters in recent years, the marketplace has been flooded with products to address emergency and mass notification needs. The need to diligently evaluate vendors is critical to ensure that services will meet an organization's specific requirements. Our key information source in the following slide show is Tracey Forbes, vice president of software business development at SunGard Availability Services.
Chris Preimesberger Chris Preimesberger was named Editor-in-Chief of Features & Analysis at eWEEK in November 2011. Previously he served eWEEK as Senior Writer, covering a range of IT sectors that include data center systems, cloud computing, storage, virtualization, green IT, e-discovery and IT governance. His blog, Storage Station, is considered a go-to information source. Chris won a national Folio Award for magazine writing in November 2011 for a cover story on Salesforce.com and CEO-founder Marc Benioff, and he has served as a judge for the SIIA Codie Awards since 2005. In previous IT journalism, Chris was a founding editor of both IT Manager's Journal and DevX.com and was managing editor of Software Development magazine. His diverse resume also includes: sportswriter for the Los Angeles Daily News, covering NCAA and NBA basketball, television critic for the Palo Alto Times Tribune, and Sports Information Director at Stanford University. He has served as a correspondent for The Associated Press, covering Stanford and NCAA tournament basketball, since 1983. He has covered a number of major events, including the 1984 Democratic National Convention, a Presidential press conference at the White House in 1993, the Emmy Awards (three times), two Rose Bowls, the Fiesta Bowl, several NCAA men's and women's basketball tournaments, a Formula One Grand Prix auto race, a heavyweight boxing championship bout (Ali vs. Spinks, 1978), and the 1985 Super Bowl. A 1975 graduate of Pepperdine University in Malibu, Calif., Chris has won more than a dozen regional and national awards for his work. He and his wife, Rebecca, have four children and reside in Redwood City, Calif.Follow on Twitter: editingwhiz

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