Modern emergency management presents a paradox. On one hand, it requires meticulous organization and planning, but on the other, it is spontaneous. Planning, mitigation and training exercises are essential to prepare for possible scenarios, but unexpected events require emergency management agencies (EMAs) to be agile. EMAs must innovate, adapt and improvise because plans seldom fit circumstances.
That’s where having the right technology in place can make the difference. Most technology providers offer either point solutions for emergency-based response or day-to-day operational coordination, but not the ability to do both. True collaboration requires a responsive system that scales up or down based on any situation, from routine to crisis mode. Advanced collaboration tools like HxGN Connect, Hexagon’s new cloud-native, SaaS collaborative workspace, are equipped with ad hoc capabilities to serve critical functions when dealing with disasters or planned events.
Below are the top three benefits of ad hoc collaboration capabilities in emergency management.
3. Scalability on the fly
It would take EMAs countless hours to set up data sharing systems with rules for every perceived scenario. Even then, data sharing rules might still change as new circumstances arise. When this happens, particularly during times of crises, organizations need to make changes quickly and without the added steps involved with IT requests or reaching out to vendors.
To remain agile and responsive to particular scenarios, EMAs need a secure, controlled capability to make ad hoc changes to emergency management systems. With HxGN Connect, users can instantly make changes without going through formal request channels. Organizations can set up new layouts, change data sharing rules, scale to the scope of an event and form collaboration channels as situations evolve. Temporary and controlled access to HxGN Connect can be granted to other departments or even external agencies on the fly, allowing organizations to share their data and collaborate with partners they may not normally deal with. As HxGN Connect is hosted in the cloud, this can all be accomplished without the need to install and configure any additional software.
2. Increased efficiency with data security
EMAs oversee all kinds of incidents – from disasters to large, planned events. Even with meticulous planning and preparation, outside agencies might need to be brought in to affect the most positive outcomes. An enhanced common operating picture is necessary for these situations – one that is broader than just maps or event data – one that provides shared awareness and actionable information based on collaborative data. Without collaborative technology, EMAs can lose valuable time that can lead to detrimental results. But collaboration without controls could also create loss of data ownership or breaches with internal systems. In order to collaborate securely, EMAs need the ability to easily set data sharing controls and change quickly as events unfold.
The ability to bring in stakeholders as needed during an emergency or event means a more efficient response. Departments or agencies that do not normally share a collaboration space sometimes need to, and with HxGN Connect, dedicated channels and feeds can be quickly created and parameters set so that only members of targeted organizations can communicate.
And, with HxGN Connect, you retain full ownership and control of your data, all while actively collaborating with other entities as events unfold. With its data sharing controls, you determine the data you want others to see. Using an intuitive UI, you can quickly make changes to these rules ad hoc, switching off or turning on access to your data to meet the specific data-sharing needs for each organization you share with.
This allows organizations to maintain full control of the data they bring into the space.
1. Enhanced situational awareness when it is needed most
Situational awareness is the central, most important component of any emergency management and response. EMAs need to have a complete understanding of an incident or event, and that goes beyond planning. Quickly changing circumstances and multi-agency involvement require rapid data sharing. That’s why it’s so important to reduce the number of disparate systems used to share information.
Collaborative technology like HxGN Connect removes the delay from disparate systems, ensuring a more flexible and broader set of data beyond traditional geographic information system tools. Ad hoc scalability and the ability to bring in different stakeholders based on real-time events enhances situational awareness for everyone involved, but most importantly for the EMA overseeing the response.
Are you ready to reimagine collaboration? Contact us to find out more about HxGN Connect.
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