JetBlue Brings AlertMedia on Board to Take Its Safety Culture to New Heights
- ReliabilityAllows JetBlue to immediately reach its highly mobile, globally dispersed workforce during critical events.
- VisibilityOffers 24/7 situational awareness of emerging global threats, from extreme weather to active shooter incidents.
- Duty of CareDemonstrates to JetBlue employees that their well-being is a priority, improving trust and job satisfaction.
- EfficiencyEnables the rapid distribution of time-sensitive messages with pre-built notification templates and a mobile app.
Building a Safety Strategy Fit for the Global Airline With Hometown Values
Founded in 1998 as “New York’s hometown airline,” JetBlue has since expanded to serve over 100 cities across the U.S., Canada, the U.K., and South America. With 1,000 daily flights and over 24,000 employees, the company faces crisis management challenges unique to the aviation industry.
As one of the first three staff members to come on board when JetBlue was a small startup, Penny Neferis, Director of Business Continuity and Emergency Response, understands these challenges better than most. “We have planes in the air at all times across over 30 different countries,” she says. “Critical events happen every day in the aviation industry. Whether there’s an aircraft with a mechanical issue that requires maintenance, a winter storm that grounds our planes, or a medical situation that requires an emergency landing, we always need to be prepared.”
AlertMedia’s integrated threat intelligence and emergency communication software has helped JetBlue become even better responders as they protect their worldwide team of employees and customers across widespread global locations.
Keeping a Highly Mobile, Globally Dispersed Team Safe and Connected
While the JetBlue of today might be significantly larger and more process-driven than that initial startup was over two decades ago, its core values remain the same. “JetBlue is built on a foundation of kindness and compassion. We want to do well by our customers, our crewmembers, and the communities we serve,” explains Neferis.
That requires robust crisis response plans to cover a wide range of potential events—and the ability to quickly ramp up responses when necessary. “We have plans that focus on all kinds of potential events, from aircraft accidents to extreme weather to active shooter incidents,” says Marlene Wild, Emergency Response Manager at JetBlue. “But for each of these, the 100-plus cities that we fly to also need individual action points and checklists.” It’s also essential to know when to activate those plans—and how to communicate them.
Before partnering with AlertMedia, JetBlue’s business continuity and emergency response team used a number of different emergency communication solutions. By far, AlertMedia’s combination of high-speed notifications and threat intelligence has proved to be the most agile tool we’ve used to date. We also always seek business partners who align with JetBlue’s mission and culture,” says Neferis.
Integrating Efficient Emergency Communication With Global Threat Intelligence
“Finding AlertMedia was like a breath of fresh air,” says Neferis. “From the start, we were impressed with how the product and people match our core values.” JetBlue’s business continuity and emergency response team also appreciates how easy the platform is to operate. “AlertMedia is incredibly intuitive to use,” says Wild. “Even if someone only uses the platform once or twice a year, it’s easy for them to select the right template and send off a message.”
JetBlue regularly uses the emergency communication capabilities of AlertMedia for both real and simulated events. In May 2022, when a mass shooting event in the Buffalo area threatened its team members, the business continuity and emergency response team sent wellness check surveys to all employees in the surrounding area. “Often, our crewmembers will reply to messages to say thank you or how much they appreciate knowing that we care for them. That’s important to us,” says Neferis.
“Finding AlertMedia was like a breath of fresh air. From the start, we were impressed with how the product and people match our core values.”
In September 2022, JetBlue completed a large-scale emergency exercise, coordinating over 500 personnel. “It’s a huge exercise that takes nine months of planning,” says Wild. “For our newer employees, it’s all about building muscle memory so they remember what they need to do during a real crisis. AlertMedia helps embed those steps, so everyone automatically knows what to do when a crisis hits.”
As an “always-on” company, JetBlue also relies on AlertMedia’s full-featured mobile app to monitor events and communicate with employees. “The AlertMedia mobile app is fantastic because it mirrors what I see on my laptop,” says Wild. “Having a mobile workforce that is also on call at times, this kind of cross-functionality matters. Whether I’m in the office or standing in line at a coffee shop, I can confidently use it to send out messages from wherever I am.”
After finding success with AlertMedia’s emergency communication solution, JetBlue began using the platform’s integrated threat intelligence capabilities. “When it comes to monitoring threats, there’s a lot of noise. Before AlertMedia, we had to spend a lot of time sifting through to see which threats were credible and which weren’t,” says Neferis. This manual attention was a serious issue for JetBlue in the past, with the business continuity and emergency response team relying on news alerts or fielding calls from employees about something happening in a specific location.
“AlertMedia’s analyst-vetted threat intelligence makes a huge difference in how quickly and effectively we can respond to critical events,” says Neferis. “Now, we feel like we’re always a few minutes ahead. When we get an alert, we can jump into the tool to see what’s happening, identify which employees may be affected, and proactively communicate with them.”
Making Crewmembers Feel Safe, Informed, and Confident While Traveling
Thanks to AlertMedia, JetBlue can stay on the pulse when it comes to monitoring threats, gauging employee wellness, and ensuring efficient communication through a crisis—all from one intuitive platform. “The AlertMedia dashboard is so helpful,” says Wild. “I can quickly see which crewmembers have been sent messages, track who has responded or not, and loop in leadership if they need to follow up on specific incidents.”
One feature JetBlue finds particularly valuable is the ability to view severe weather events on a map. “Being able to overlay the radar with the map of a specific area makes it incredibly easy to see which crewmembers may be impacted by a specific event. It also makes it much easier to determine if we should be broadening the scope of our response,” says Wild. “This allows us to respond not only efficiently—but also compassionately.”
While functionality is essential, so are flexibility and support. With AlertMedia’s collaborative approach to development, JetBlue can consistently leverage the AlertMedia platform in the best possible way. “We work with many business partners, and the level of service provided by AlertMedia is second to none. With AlertMedia, we immediately felt taken care of and supported. The support team is incredibly receptive to our requests and ideas, which are always listened to and implemented when possible,” says Neferis.
Empowering JetBlue’s Business Continuity and Emergency Response Team to Soar to New Heights
“AlertMedia helps JetBlue grow stronger and makes it easier for us to support our crewmembers during critical events,” says Neferis. With a large, globally dispersed workforce—in addition to the unique challenges of operating in the aviation industry—it’s essential to use a platform that enables JetBlue to be proactive rather than reactive to potential threats.
By integrating threat intelligence with emergency communication, the business continuity and emergency response team at JetBlue can monitor threats and communicate with their crewmembers as quickly as possible. “We need verified information, and we need it fast,” says Wild. “Having the confidence that trained analysts vet the information is crucial. Of all the emergency communication solutions we’ve used, only AlertMedia has been able to provide us that.”
“Working with the team at AlertMedia has been a delight—and one of the top reasons we decided to partner with them,” says Wild. From the top down, the team at JetBlue is committed to building a strong safety culture that puts the safety of its employees, crewmembers, and passengers front and center. And AlertMedia helps them do just that.