As we ease into summer, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration predicts another above-average Atlantic hurricane season. Although the 2022 storm season has officially just begun, utilities have been prepping for likely upcoming critical events like these storms for weeks.
And as the storms roll in, so will the media coverage. News reporters love covering extreme weather events and emergencies. They are often eager to be right in the middle of one hundred and fifty plus mile per hour winds, while tethered to a tree by only their wits. And like many of the anxious viewers at home they might not have much of a plan if something were to go wrong. While it is not uncommon for many to lack a plan in these emergency situations, we at ARCOS always aim to plan ahead. We know the damage these events can inflict and in many cases, the lives that can be at stake. Planning is not something we take for granted, and we do it while the sun is still shining thanks to the help of past storm data and real-world experience that is readily available.
Incident Command Systems
These emergency situations are what the Incident Command System (ICS) is for. ICS allows a utility or critical infrastructure industry to establish effective incident management techniques, quickly improving emergency operations, response, recovery, and restoration times. ICS can help organizations develop and maintain four key things:
- Safety for customers and crews
- A focus on fast, clear decision-making
- A loss of confusion in chaotic circumstances
- An increase in situational awareness
What Is Automated Incident Management?
Automated incident management can be described as using automation programs and artificial intelligence to manage one or multiple incidents from beginning to end. The start of the process begins with the creation of a “ticket,” and from that point forward, plans that lead to outcomes and allocation of incident response tools can be put into motion. Increase incident response workflows with ARCOS.
The Automated Incident Management Process
Prioritizing What Matters Most
It is important that response teams understand which incidents are of the most importance so that they can be prioritized. With the help of an automated incident management system, tickets are labeled with information that can alert teams as to what is most important, making the management of incidents more effective. Not only do you prioritize incidents, but false-positive notifications can also be minimized. Because of these features, teams are able to:
- Filter out and resolve lower priority incidents while easily understanding which ones are a higher priority. With incidents that require immediate action, teams can receive push notifications to make them aware of the situation faster than ever.
- Increase productivity and effectiveness with an immediate response. With the help of mobile notifications, the right team members are alerted as soon as the incident occurs, allowing for enhanced team collaboration as everyone can quickly be brought up to speed on important aspects of the situation.
Why Is Automated Incident Management Important?
When a workplace lacks automation processes, there are often negative side effects that come from it. Without proper automation processes in place, different teams of employees are more likely to be uninformed about what other teams and departments are doing. Not only can this lack of communication lead to confusion among staff about responsibilities, but it can also create slower response times for plans of action.
In many scenarios, different teams within the same business are using software, applications, and platforms that are not compatible with the incident management tools of other teams. When these tools are uniform or compatible, better management of all processes and plans becomes more attainable.
Another benefit of the automation process is that human error is less likely. While a machine can never replace certain aspects of human involvement, the processes of information collection, sorting, and data analysis can be benefitted thanks to the help of an automated system.
A key takeaway is that with the help of automation processes, communication between different systems and teams is more synchronized. Not only will all of the necessary teams and departments be aware of incidents and their varying statuses, but they can also better assist each other when it comes to allocating resources.
ARCOS Incident Manager
Automating incident command systems with a solution like ARCOS Incident Manager can deliver these benefits faster. In a few clicks, Incident Manager not only aids an organization’s ICS structure but also increases their level of preparedness. Their level of preparedness can be increased by providing a historical record of previous critical incidents. Teams can see and understand emerging trends from incident data and learn from best practices. Problems in the span of control can be identified quicker, assessed, and Incident Manager can scale up instantly to face an increasing threat or scale down as the event’s energy dissipates. Incident Manager is an approach that leads to a coordinated, cost-effective ICS roll-out.
ICS is gaining prominence in the private sector due to the increase in weather severity and the more significant number of incidents storms are causing.