When you send out an urgent notification, do you find that few of your targeted recipients bother to respond? If your message is important and you don’t get the responses you need, it’s hard to know where your people are, if they’re safe and if they’re acting on vital direction. This puts their well being at risk and can impact your entire organization.
The problem of lack of response is a persistent one, but by looking at it from the perspective or your recipients, you can gain insight into why it may be happening. That can then inform you on how to remedy the situation. Start by explaining why the notification system was put into place, emphasizing issues that concern your staff, like safety, convenience and protection. Explain why a response is so important, even if the message itself seems to be a general one without a great deal of urgency.
Sometimes people don’t react to a message because they aren’t sure of the source or aren’t sure of the proper action to take. Both of these can be addressed by a sensible plan of training and expectations setting. A few pre-announced tests, with messages delivered by various routes, like email, phone and SMS, will go a long way in making recipients feel more comfortable with your system. Once users are trained, it’s a good idea to establish a regular testing schedule just to keep everyone familiar with the rhythm of notification and response. That way, when you really need to hear from your people they know how to respond and they know why it’s important they do so.