Posted by: Emergency Communications Network | February 24, 2015

ECN presented with 2015 Riverside Summit Award

gI_62473_ECN_SUMMITEmergency Communications Network (ECN), North America’s largest and most trusted provider of mass notification solutions, was presented with a 2015 Riverside Summit Award in February during the 2015 Riverside Leadership Summit (RLS) in Houston. ECN was given special recognition for being the top performing mature investment in its fund family.

The annual Riverside Leadership Summit is the cornerstone Riverside University event. Bringing together over 300 executives and Riversiders from around the globe, Riverside Leadership Summit spans two days, providing intensive training in management tactics and strategies. The curriculum is driven by executive management teams and focuses on growth-oriented topics, while fostering the exchange of ideas and providing valuable networking opportunities.

Among the statements made by the Co-CEOs of Riverside, ECN was recognized for its growth since the company was purchased in October 2011, both organically and via acquisition. This success was partially due to six add-on acquisitions in three years that strengthened ECN’s position in core markets, improved human capital and broadened geographical reach. ECN increased client retention rates by 6%, leading to recurring revenue of 99%. As a result, sales nearly doubled since 2011—an organic sales growth of more than 10% per year.

Posted by: Emergency Communications Network | February 18, 2015

Congressman Ron DeSantis visits Emergency Communications Network

ECN_handshake

At the conclusion of his visit and before he departs, Rep. Ron DeSantis (FL-06) shakes hands with ECN President David DiGiacomo.

On February 17, 2015, Ormond Beach-based Emergency Communications Network (ECN) hosted Rep. Ron DeSantis (FL-06) and his District Representative, Andrew Meiner. During the visit, the Congressman and Meiner were introduced to ECN’s executive team and were led on a tour through ECN’s new corporate headquarters located at 780 W. Granada Boulevard in Ormond Beach.

The Congressman viewed a live demonstration of ECN’s CodeRED emergency and mass notification technology, designed for public safety officials to quickly notify residents and staff of emergencies or routine matters. A test telephone call, text message, email and CodeRED Mobile Alert app message were created specifically for the Congressman’s visit and sent internally to ECN staff. The demonstration showed Rep. DeSantis the speed and power of CodeRED technology, which was developed and is maintained out of ECN’s local office in Ormond Beach. To date, more than 3,000 public safety organizations across North America rely on ECN technology to save lives.

ECN_mobile app

In ECN’s Client Support Department, ECN President David DiGiacomo explains how the CodeRED Mobile Alert app technology works to Rep. Ron DeSantis (FL-06) and District Representative, Andrew Meiner.

Rep. DeSantis also had the opportunity to speak with several ECN staff members, including those in newly created positions. ECN’s rapid growth is a direct result from the support of private equity. ECN currently employs more than 100 full-time employees and is currently seeking to expand its staff of client support personnel and software developers. ECN is also seeking interns for the summer semester in the areas of software development, IT and marketing. For more information about open positions, click here.

logos-CE_081610Hydro Westmount in Montreal attributed their use of the CodeRED system on February 2, 2015 to avoid reaching a critical threshold for energy consumption and saving tens of thousands of dollars in the process. According to Hydro Westmount Communication Officer Sebastian Samuel, outside temperatures of 7 below zero Celsius caused a consumption peak that would soon reach critical thresholds.

Traditionally, Hydro Westmount relied on placing signs outside and posts on their website to encourage residents to use less electricity. Instead, they decided to use their CodeRED emergency notification system to send out an alert to residents, requesting they reduce their energy consumption.

“It was an automatic response. We were able to see a change right away in their use of electricity,” Samuel said. His organization reserves the use of the CodeRED system for emergency events only. “In this case, it was critical and at the same time it allowed the city to save money and be more efficient,” he said.

According to the Hydro Westmount Director in a written post, the alert resulted in a much more manageable peak. The reduction prevented Hydro Westmount from overloading the network and causing service interruptions. More importantly, it also helped them avoid an $80,000 overage electric bill.

When temperatures fall within a certain range, Hydro Westmount sees spikes in energy consumption. Their CodeRED alert asked customers to delay using major appliances during peak period, including dryers and dishwashers. “For Internet and signs, people have to be out there to see them or visit a website to see the message. The effect is way lower than the more direct approach with the CodeRED system,” Samuel said.

Hydro Westmount through Ville de Westmount has been a CodeRED client since December 2013 and has used the system since to alert residents of power outages and restoration timelines.

Severe Weather AwarenessIt is never a question of if a natural disaster will occur. It is a question of when. Being headquartered in Ormond Beach has given the Emergency Communications Network (ECN) team firsthand experience with many severe weather threats common to the South. For this reason, ECN is helping spread awareness and encourage preparedness for all types of hazards during Florida’s 2015 Severe Weather Awareness Week and Georgia’s 2015 Severe Weather Awareness Week taking place February 2-6.

One of the most critical steps to preparedness is having the fastest and most reliable access to emergency information. ECN clients proactively use the CodeRED Emergency Notification System to alert residents of severe weather. Signing up for CodeRED Weather Warning alerts specific to their participating community should be an essential part of an individual’s emergency preparedness plan. The CodeRED Weather Warning system has kept thousands of communities across the nation informed of severe thunderstorms, tornadoes and flash floods.

This past year, the CodeRED system has successfully alerted residents across the country of severe weather events that frequently occur in Florida and Georgia. In June 2014, the City of Brunswick experienced a severe thunderstorm that produced a tornado. Residents were warned through the CodeRED system and given extra time to prepare. In July 2014, Clay County was able to alert residents of flooding in some areas using CodeRED. In August 2014, the Siskiyou County Board of Supervisors said the CodeRED system was crucial in a wildfire emergency.

Florida and Georgia residents should also download the CodeRED Mobile Alert app as part of their preparation efforts in anticipation of severe weather. The app uses geospatial technology to deliver location-based alerts directly to any subscriber’s mobile device. App users can add a 1-year subscription of CodeRED Weather Warning and gain access to automated severe weather warnings. For a limited time, a subscription is only .99 for current and new users.

Residents can download the CodeRED Mobile Alert app here. Stay up-to-date on ECN’s emergency notification systems by following us on Twitter and ‘Liking’ us on Facebook.

Bright House Regional Business AwardsEmergency Communications Network (ECN) announced today that it has been named a finalist in the first annual Bright House Networks Regional Business Awards in Central Florida. ECN was named a finalist in the medium business category for the awards, which honor the companies, organizations and people who have impacted, with their products, services, and thought leadership, the Central Florida community. Winning businesses will be honored at a special celebration on March 19 at Rosen Shingle Creek.

ECN currently provides services to more than 35% of Florida counties and 100+ Florida cities, with additional clients representing every state throughout the county and internationally. ECN’s clients, mostly representing public safety organizations, rely on the CodeRED emergency notification system to deliver time critical information to residents and staff to save lives. In 2014, ECN introduced SmartNotice, a new notification platform designed specifically for businesses to streamline their internal communications while reducing costs and increasing efficiency. ECN was delighted to share with the local business community the tremendous impact its technology has made across the world as it continues to be the dominant leader in the mass notification industry.

Bright House Networks has teamed up with Chambers of Commerce in nine counties to host this event connecting local businesses in a celebration of best-in-class. Bright House Networks will award prizes totaling over $1,000,000, including commercial TV production, air time, customer newsletter and cash.

For more information about the Regional Business Awards and to purchase your tickets/tables click here.

At Emergency Communications Network (ECN), we appreciate all of the police departments, fire departments and emergency management agencies who use the CodeRED  system to keep residents informed.

Wfirstrespondersappreciationweeke’re taking a moment during Florida’s first-ever First Responder Appreciation Week to thank our client agencies for their dedication to the safety of communities everywhere. Governor Rick Scott created the week to encourage people to thank the nation’s law enforcement, fire fighters and EMT’s for their service during January 5-9.

To wrap up the week, we’re joining many of our clients throughout the country on January 9 in observing the first National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day (L.E.A.D.) Concerns of Police Survivors, Inc. and partnering organizations created the day to recognize and support law enforcement.

National Law Enforcement Appreciation DayDuring National Law Enforcement Appreciation Day, local events are being held across the U.S. in support of law enforcement officers. ECN will be showing support through social media.

Public safety officials nationwide use the CodeRED system to notify residents of critical events. When local law enforcement officers issue a CodeRED message to alert residents of an active shooter or missing person, we are reminded of their commitment to the safety of their residents.

We’d like to express our sincerest gratitude to the law enforcement officers and first responders within our client communities, and all of those across the Country, for their continued hard work and for the protection they provide their communities with every day.

Posted by: Emergency Communications Network | January 8, 2015

ECN’s 2nd Annual Hackathon: “The Sprint”

A new year brings new challenges and the first challenge to face the Emergency Communications Network (ECN) development team was the 2015 Second Annual Hackathon: “The Sprint.”

Led by Director of Software Development, Gary VanOpdorp, five teams competed in a Hackathon aimed at designing new and enhanced software features to benefit ECN clients. The teams were made up of staff members from software development, database administration and quality assurance, as well as two added interns currently studying at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

Team 3: Brooke, Brian, Pal

Team 3: Brooke, Brian, Pal

“I wanted to use this event as an opportunity for my team to express their creativity, demonstrate how brilliant they are and, of course, have fun,” said VanOpdorp.

“The Sprint,” named for a miniature version of the original ECN Hackathon last year, went underway January 7, 2015 on a cold Florida morning in Ormond Beach. A collaborative effort between the ECN development, sales and client support teams created a list of 24 small ideas to better help current and future clients. From the list, the Hackathon teams were tasked to pick an idea and expand on it to create a solution.

In order to determine which Hackathon team would pick first in the idea selection, a trivia contest was held. But in a room full of clever ‘techies,’ the average trivia show just wouldn’t do. Teams were tasked to put the answers to multiple questions such as, “what is the sum of all the prime numbers ending in 2 and 5,” in numerical and alphabetical order. Team 1, made up of Ketan, Mike and Rebecca, won the

Judges Panel

Judges Panel

contest.

The hacking teams were allotted a single work day to compile all the data and codes for their solution, as well as put together a presentation for the panel of judges. Supervisors from the ECN marketing, project management and client support teams helped create the six-member judging panel. The teams were scored on the following:

  • Their 15 minute presentation
  • Their overall solution to the problem
  • The feasibility of their solution
  • The originality of their idea

After two hours of presentations and deliberations, the judges awarded the coveted “Sprinter” to Team 3, made up of Brian, Brooke and Pal. The winners of the 2015 Second Annual Hackathon: “The Sprint,” each received a crystal trophy and a 256GB thumb drive. Hopes for future Hackathons include expanding the competition to include multiple ECN teams outside of development in order to collaborate with more of the company.

Posted by: Emergency Communications Network | December 18, 2014

Ask Don: Preparing for Winter Weather

Don Hall, ECN's Director of Government Relations

Don Hall, ECN’s Director of Government Relations

Winter season is in full swing, and for most of the United States it came in a little early and with a vengeance. While most regions are very accustomed to significant snowfalls and freezing temperatures, the weather can still pose a great deal of danger and hardship for several days. In other regions where severe winter conditions are not as prevalent, the dangers and hardships seem to be even higher as those communities are not as accustomed to these extremes and not as well prepared due to the infrequency of it.

In either case, when adequately used, the CodeRED mass notification system has the capability of providing multiple life-saving messaging campaigns to your residents. Utilizing the many message dissemination modes that CodeRED provides will allow you to reach as many residents as you can within a single launch process. This is an extremely valuable feature unique to CodeRED that will and has proven to save lives day after day.

Many of our clients share their best practice uses of their CodeRED system with us throughout the year. As we receive them we try to make sure that those successes are made available to our thousands of other clients for them to learn from and consider should they encounter the same situations. Featured with this blog is a Best Practices Case Study from one of our proactive clients Hamburg, NY that experienced an early and somewhat unexpected severe snow storm in November. That document will provide you with the timeline of the storm, along with the CodeRED messages that were disseminated and favorable social media responses from the public.

It is important to use your mass notification system pre-storm and post-storm. Most system users have the mindset that a system like CodeRED should only be used as an event is unfolding as with no notice incidents, emergencies or real-time evacuation orders. While that is a very good time to use your system, the need doesn’t stop there. There are dozens of reasons why you should consider using your system to transmit important information to your community.

Unlike a severe summer storm or a hazardous materials incident which may be short lived, a severe winter storm event will likely shut down the normal activities of the community for several days. Weather can affect businesses, cause utility outages, closed roads, schools and even hamper emergency services response. Using your mass notification system during these times to keep residents informed of the progress of local government, updated on continued weather effects, utility restoration and even safety precautions will be very helpful and will be received favorably by the greater majority of your community.

Below is a list of suggestive uses for your mass notification system before, during and in the aftermath of a severe winter storm:

Pre-storm:

  • Storm awareness and preparedness information
  • Introduce or re-introduce your plans to communicate with residents through your MNS
  • Urge residents to provide contact information within your MNS by opting in to receive messages
  • Periodic storm updates
  • Safety precautions
  • How to report damages / utility outages
  • Where to get utility outage updates moving forward
  • Locations of public shelters

During the storm:

  • Continue to provide periodic updates about the storm and preparedness tips
  • Share community closure announcements
  • Update on the status of government
  • Advise when State of Emergency or Snow Advisory Plans have been activated, along with any pertinent instructions that are required.

Post storm:

  • Continue to provide updates from the pre and during storm information
  • Emergency plans in effect
  • Travel advisories
  • Road closures
  • Status of local government services and closures
  • Request damage assessment reports
  • Provide shelter information and transportation assets available
  • Provide any new safety precautions due to the current situation
  • Report when all roads are open or as government services are starting to become available
  • Check on elderly and disabled neighbors

We encourage everyone to continue to share best practices and lessons learned with us and your fellow public safety peers. As always, please feel free to contact us at 866-939-0911 if we can help you in any way with the use of your CodeRED system.

______________________________________________________________________

ECN’s Director of Government Relations, Don Hall, has spent more than 40 years in public safety so his emergency management experience makes him ideal for helping our current clients, potential customers and the emergency management community to interact with regarding the need and use of mass notification systems for state and local governments.

If you have anything you would like to ask him, please click here to email your question and he will address your question directly in our “Ask Don” blog.

Follow ECN on Twitter and ‘Like’ us on Facebook to get more updates from our company.

Posted by: Emergency Communications Network | December 12, 2014

ECN offers limited time price reduction for severe weather alerts on the CodeRED Mobile Alert app

crmaa holiday promo_120414-3 CodeRED Mobile Alert app users can now add severe weather alerts for a reduced price. Emergency Communications Network (ECN) has launched a special holiday promotion of its public safety application that allows users to add one year of the optional CodeRED Weather Warning feature for only $0.99, an 80 percent price decrease.

Through push notifications being sent directly to a subscriber’s mobile device, the CodeRED app allows residents to be notified of important emergency information when they are on-the-go. Here is what you need to know about the CodeRED Mobile Alert app:

  • The app is free. The CodeRED Mobile Alert app provides subscribers free emergency, community and
    missing person notification warnings issued by authorized public safety officials across the United States and Canada.
  • Weather alerts are an add-on feature. The completely optional CodeRED Weather Warning add-on feature sends subscribers automatic push notifications if the National Weather Service has issued a severe weather warning for their current location. Users will still receive free emergency, community and missing person notifications regardless of the weather upgrade.
  • The fee for weather alerts does not renew automatically. After your annual subscription of CodeRED Weather Warning expires, you can choose not to continue to use this part of the app by not paying the fee again. You will not be automatically charged for another subscription.
  • The app requires you to enable location services on your phone. The app uses your phone’s GPS services to deliver location-based multimedia alerts using push technology. The CodeRED Weather Warning subscription allows users to receive weather alerts directly from the National Weather Service based on their location.
  • The app is customizable. The app features dozens of customizable options including warning preferences and the ability to set a personal warning radius to only receive alerts within a specific geographic area within the user’s current location. Upon download, the CodeRED Mobile Alert app allows users to view all active alerts including the ability to view alert details and hear an audio recording created by the issuing public safety organization for that community.
  • You must create an app account. Click on the “register” button when the app asks you to sign in, enter your email and create a password. If your City or County offers CodeRED and you have already created an account to receive those alerts, you must register separately to receive the alerts through the app because your account information does not automatically sync with the app. I don’t think this is true…check with Guillermo. I think you can do a guest account. However, if you do create an account, it’s not the same login info as you would use for your city/county login. We may want to strike this bullet point altogether.

10714520_668250619959039_1414559173262982267_oCurrent users may add 1-year to their existing subscription at any time during the promotional period for only $0.99. The promotion is open to all new and current CodeRED Mobile Alert app users.

CodeRED Mobile Alert is available on the App Store and Google Play or you can download the app here. If you’re happy with what CodeRED Mobile Alert has to offer, consider writing a review on the App Store or Google Play. If you have questions or comments, please contact us toll-free at 866-533-6935 or via email at mobilecontactus@ecnetwork.com.

Posted by: Emergency Communications Network | November 18, 2014

West Homestead switching to CodeRED emergency notification system

Older Posts »

Categories

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 74 other followers