Transformational Data Solutions - Key to Actionable Intelligence for Public Safety

2021: A Year in Review

Jeff Robertson, Intrado Life & Safety President

January 04, 2022

To read the original article, click here.

The long-held adage, “Preparedness is the best response” was never more true for public safety than in 2021. Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic, Amazon, DoorDash®, and census-takers found us. Citizens also expect that emergency communications centers will know their precise location when they contact “911” via voice call or data messaging (text). Just as important as location identification is the additional data that brings greater situational awareness to first responders throughout an incident.

With ever-increasing amounts of operationally relevant data available from multiple, divergent resources, getting the right information to the right first responder at the right time is still the key to making the best possible informed decision for emergency response.

The trajectory from “Information to Insight” is critical to our ability to create strategies that enable us to serve the public in time of need while effectively planning for the future. It is the very ethos of what Intrado Life & Safety is all about – transforming data into actionable intelligence to help save lives!

As a life-long hockey fan, I have heard Wayne Gretzky quote his father, Walter, who said, “Imagine where the puck is likely to be, rather than to skate to where it is now.” This quote resonates with me because it speaks to how businesses and leaders need to think about the future. Knowing where the puck is going allows us to prepare, set up our next move, and remain ahead of the curve. 

I agree with Wayne’s advice to play “where the puck is going to be.” This quote resonates with me because it speaks to how businesses and leaders need to think about the future. Knowing where the puck is going allows us to prepare, set up our next move, and remain ahead of the curve.

This is a compelling imperative for leaders and organizations and is something that Intrado Life & Safety has relied upon heavily as we progressed through 2021. With an eye to the pandemic, coupled with the technological agility of our systems, we were able to accelerate development and enhance our platforms to accommodate changing dynamics to meet client needs.

Carpe Diem

Businesses must now ask, “How can we ‘seize the day’ to drive change in 2022 and beyond?” At Intrado, we have identified key shifts in the market as it relates to Life & Safety and have evolved our business to align to those shifts. We see three major challenges that substantiate these changes in the market: 

• A Focus on Safety

The implications of the past few years have elevated Safety to the top of the list. The convergence of data and technology has presented an opportunity and a challenge around how public safety agencies make sense of this information to improve operations and more importantly, move from being reactive to being proactive.

In 2021, Intrado Life & Safety focused on the transformation of data, specifically enabling the flow of data into the 911 stream. We announced the launch of our Emergency Data Broker (EDB) solution which spans an organization’s continuum of life and safety solutions. It enables companies to bridge the delivery of information between the Internet of Things (IoT) and 911 emergency responders. With the current 911 system, dispatchers typically spend initial moments of the calls gathering and processing basic data. Yet this is valuable time during an emergency. The EDB solution delivers the data into the 911 system via the internet of things, alarms, telematics, and wearables, which can accelerate critical care when time is of the essence.

As the IoT gained public safety relevance, we announced an incredible relationship with ADT. ADT will now extend their solutions by offering an integrated solution with the EDB platform. When an alarm is triggered, ADT will be able to send critical information and data through the 911 system directly to public safety answering points (PSAPs). This will equip first responders with greater awareness of each situation enabling them to respond better.

• Compliance Governance and Mitigating Risk

For several years, there has been an increased focus on changes in compliance in order to mitigate risk. The global pandemic has merely accelerated this. Kari’s Law and the Ray Baum Act both have serious implications for businesses. Introduced in 2018, businesses are required to comply with these federal laws in 2022. The Ray Baum Act requires a “dispatchable location” when 911 is called. Kari’s Law requires that the phone system used must allow the user to dial 911 without a prefix; in addition, a notification must be sent when 911 is called and a call back number must be provided. Together, these mandates aim to provide the public with greater access to 911 emergency services while improving emergency response outcomes. Organizations are now compelled to look at their infrastructure to ensure these requirements are fulfilled.

In 2021, Intrado Life & Safety diversified its solution offerings by adding an industry-leading emergency mass notification and IP paging platform to its portfolio that enable organizations to support these requirements. The notification platform reaches people across disparate communication systems to ensure everyone receives the right message at the right time.

We are excited to see how schools have begun to benefit from such a system. A mass notification system for schools is essential in maintaining safety and keeping everyone informed during emergencies that may include threats of violence, natural disasters, and lockdowns or evacuations. Schools have become especially vulnerable in recent times; these new technologies and platforms provide them with the tools they need to manage the various components of school safety and emergency response.

• Migration to “The Cloud”

The ability for the cloud to deliver long-term value has been clear for some time now, but we are seeing its true capabilities brought to life in various ways. We understand how this can impact and bring value-added results in innovation and productivity for organizations. In a recent “Life & Safety Matters” video blog, I discuss why Intrado migrated to the cloud for our 911 solutions. There are three core benefits of the cloud in our 911 solutions: security, cost, and flexibility. Today’s technology is significantly better than the on-premise solutions of the past and we are now equipped to seize this moment to create more sustainable systems with better outcomes.

The world has certainly changed, and our role is to foresee those changes and develop solutions that help us improve safety while innovating for the future. I am incredibly proud of the way our Intrado team has moved to meet challenges with agility and purpose. We are extremely optimistic about the year ahead. Stay tuned to learn how Intrado Life & Safety is leading the way to a safer future for the public.

*Watch for a new article by Vik Krishan, who leads Intrado Digital Workflows within Life & Safety. He’ll be sharing his thoughts about where we aimed our hockey puck in 2021. He’ll bring you up to speed on Digital Workflows that transcend Healthcare, Education, and the Utilities industries to manage billions of critical outreach and engagement workflows, enabling automation to ensure that key business activities take place.

Author Name
Jeff Robertson, Intrado Life & Safety President