Highlights from the 2022 Employee Safety Conference
Look back at all the best moments and insights from the 2022 Employee Safety Conference, and get ready to register for the upcoming event in 2024 so you can see it all for yourself.
In October 2022, 150 security, business resilience, and employee health & safety professionals gathered in Austin, Texas, to attend the inaugural Employee Safety Conference. For two and a half days, they learned from leading experts in the field, participated in hands-on workshops, and networked with peers from other world-class organizations.
As we gear up for next year’s Employee Safety Conference, we wanted to take a look back at some highlights as a reminder of all the valuable insights and connections made.
“Being able to respond quickly during an emergency gives you an advantage not just in taking care of your location, but also the community.”Justin Noakes Director of Emergency Preparedness, H-E-B
Highlights From Expert Panel Discussions
The speakers and panel discussions covered all things safety, security, and business resilience. Here are a few key takeaways we kept hearing over and over throughout the different presentations.
Empower your employees
The conference covered a wide range of topics, but one recurring theme was how to prepare employees to take care of their own safety. It doesn’t matter if your business has thousands of locations and even more employees like Whataburger and Starbucks, if you have a small team managing a few locations like Austin Pets Alive, or if you’re focused on protecting lone workers on a job site like Dalkia Energy Solutions—your employees are going to be on the front lines of whatever event is putting your business at risk. This means they need the training, authority, and resources to navigate these threats.
Familiarize your team with alerts
One of the most frequently asked questions from the audience was about how to ensure their employees aren’t overwhelmed or confused by getting these alert texts and emails, especially as they are just starting out with the system. But any time it came up, the presenters had the same advice: Keep your messages focused on safety and send out test messages so your employees know what to look for. When you run emergency alert drills and give everyone a heads up, your employees are less likely to be suspicious about unexpected texts or emails.
The right tools can make all the difference
This might seem like a given at a conference centered around how to best use the AlertMedia suite of solutions—but again and again, the speakers emphasized the importance of having a good communication system, threat intelligence system, and even physical security systems. With a toolset that’s easy to use and reliable in a crisis, your employees are going to be more protected, and your job is going to be a whole lot easier.
“I wanted to put a tool in my team’s hand, so that if they needed help, they could get help,” said Mark French, Chief Human Resources Officer at Dalkia Energy Solutions, during his panel about sustainable safety culture. “We look at safety and even human resources as a service. Because when something is wrong, we are going to do our best to make it right.”
Safety is more than just physical
Our attendees had lots of questions about how to ensure physical safety and security such as protecting from active shooter events and improving loss prevention, but the conversations went even further than that. It’s easy to see how and why we should protect our employees from physical harm, but psychological safety and mental health are just as important to a secure, productive workforce. When you prioritize making your workplace safe and inclusive for all employees, especially your BIPOC and underrepresented employees, you create an environment much more capable of making sound decisions and responding effectively in critical situations.
Highlights From Product Experience Sessions
Attendees participated in several different hands-on product experience sessions where our product team walked through ways to optimize their usage. Here are just a few of the things they learned.
Reduce notification overload by filtering your alerts
When you are sending out threat alerts to your employees, you want to make sure the right people are getting the right messages. That way, they don’t start to tune out your alerts and miss something critical that might actually affect them. We walked through how to customize system settings like severity levels, impact radiuses, and alert subscriptions to help you keep the right people informed while not clogging up the inbox of those who don’t need that information.
Speed up notifications with pre-built templates
The ability to get critical information out quickly and reliably is the root of what emergency communication is all about. That’s why attendees got to see a walkthrough of how to build out notification templates, assign different permissions for template building, and use dynamic groups to make it easier to get the right info to the right people without as much manual data management.
Use admin permissions to scale your communication
If you are running with a small security team, you may be struggling to stay ahead of alerts all by yourself. But by granting different admin permissions to managers, team leads, and other qualified individuals, you can distribute some of the load and reach more people. There are settings in the AlertMedia system to protect data and ensure any admins are able to access only what they need to send out an alert.
The future of AlertMedia products
Attendees also got a first look at some of the upcoming additions and improvements to the AlertMedia product line. They got a special preview of our Travel Risk Management solution before anyone else and saw sneak peeks of some of the still-unreleased improvements we have rolling out soon.
What Attendees Said
“I love all the training tips because we are always trying to strive for better adoption, and how each of the various panelists addressed how they train and how they got the socialization of the alert system. So, we are hoping to use some of that valuable insight to help,” said Jane Lenz, Senior Director of Compliance and Risk Management at Travere Therapeutics.
“When you walked around that corner and saw AlertMedia staff, it was nothing but warmth and it felt like ‘here are my people, this is my tribe, this is who I want to be with.’ So even out of all the amazing people that we’ve already met and networked with, it’s truly been the welcoming of AlertMedia that’s been my favorite part about the conference,” explained Janetta Scates, Director of Security and Emergency Management at Planned Parenthood of the Pacific Southwest.
“My favorite thing has been the interactions in the meetings so far. There’ve been a lot of good panelists, a lot of good information coming out about not only companies my size but companies of all sizes. I think that a lot of people can garner information about redeveloping their plans and the usage of AlertMedia within those plans.” Ron Derrick, Senior Emergency Manager for Whataburger, told us. “I’d recommend this conference not only to those who are already in the AlertMedia family, but also to those who are contemplating the tool.”
“I’m pretty new to this industry. I’ve been in the health and safety field for about three or four years now. And just getting to meet new people and see how their businesses are creating plans and creating opportunities to keep their employees safe and keep them all connected during an emergency or disaster,” Erin Black, Employee Health and Safety Lead at Affirm said. “So far, my favorite session was the product roadmap. A lot of the things for the future that are being built out are the same as suggestions or questions I’ve had, things that I’ve spoken with my CSM (customer success manager) about directly.”
Join the Fun in 2024
You don’t have to sit on the sidelines and settle for just reading about the event highlights. We have a bigger and somehow even better Employee Safety Conference happening again in Austin, Texas, February 7–9, 2024. If you’re an existing AlertMedia customer, sign up to attend here! If you’re not already using AlertMedia’s tools, schedule a demo to see what our conference participants are raving about.