Follow Us

Crisis Communications Done Right – A Look at FEMA’s NBEOC

The 2017 hurricane season has generated storms that have devastated (and continue to devastate) many parts of the nation. The human tragedies alone force us to give pause when considering the frequency, magnitude and impact they’ve had on entire regions.

In every disaster, accurate and timely communications play a vital role in the preparedness, recovery and a return to normal operations. When large regional events occur (such as those seen with Harvey, Irma and Maria) and especially in quick succession, communications can quickly break down and lead to erroneous and even catastrophic decisions. What is needed during times like this is a well-oiled, collaborative approach that aligns critical government responders/resources with the private sector business leaders for boots-on-the-ground type discussions.

But where do you turn for this level of help? We are fortunate that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is prepared for this and offers unprecedented access to recovery collaboration through their National Business Emergency Operations Center (NBEOC). Follow along with our post and make sure you add the NBEOC as a must-have tool for your organizations recovery strategy!

What is the NBEOC?

According to FEMA,The National Business Emergency Operations Center, or the NBEOC, is FEMA’s virtual clearing house for two-way information sharing between public and private sector stakeholders to prepare for, respond to, recover from, and mitigate against disasters.”

I love this definition! Why? Mostly because it couldn’t be more succinct! During Hurricane’s Harvey, Irma and Maria, I had the opportunity to access and participate with the NBEOC workspace in support of the RPCfirst and the financial sector we represent.

There are a few observations I’d like to share to demonstrate just how good that NBEOC description really is:

  • Virtual – Unlike traditional meetings with limitations on availability and access/size, the NBEOC supporting technology and design allows for 24/7 operation and can accommodate hundreds of attendees in one small screen space! All you need is a decent internet connection and the designated URL and you immediately have access to public-private subject matter experts working tirelessly to respond to an event.
  • Two-way information sharing – The NBEOC is set up to support two-way information sharing. Unlike many situation report services, which “talk at you”, the NBEOC has chat features that allow participants to share critical information and ask questions not only of FEMA but also to attendees representing multiple critical infrastructure sectors. During emergency operations, the NBEOC provides access to real-time situational awareness and ground truth on the needs of the survivors and communities being impacted. Additionally, during an event, FEMA schedules daily calls to obtain the latest status, share information and take Q&A’s.
  • Public and private sector stakeholders: The days are gone where “like types” closed ranks during a crisis and provided sterilized reports that were often outdated by the time they were published. Today’s resilience experts/leaders understand that when a crisis hits, it generally has a cascading effect on multiple sectors at a time depending on what that event is. By having both public and private sector stakeholders participate in the NBEOC, situational assessments happen faster, response efforts are better coordinated, and challenges can be prioritized and addressed by the experts on both sides (Public/Private).

While participation in the NBEOC in voluntary and no cost, many organizations are unable to dedicate the resource/time to be full participants during an event as they are generally inundated with supporting their organizations immediate needs. Becoming a member of your regional FIRST (Fostering Industry Resilience and Security Through Teamwork) coalition is one way to ensure you will be receiving NBEOC information for events that pertain to your region.

Not sure how to join? Visit http://rpcfirst.org to find your nearest coalition. Your region isn’t covered? No worries! Reach out and let’s talk about what it takes to start a FIRST in your area.

Stay safe everyone!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Our Services

Worpress

Lorem ipsum dolor amet consectetur adipiscing elit. Nunc mi dui placerat eu faucibus vel, efficitur quis magna. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada.

Read More

Web Design

Lorem ipsum dolor amet consectetur adipiscing elit. Nunc mi dui placerat eu faucibus vel, efficitur quis magna. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada.

Read More

Ecommerce

Lorem ipsum dolor amet consectetur adipiscing elit. Nunc mi dui placerat eu faucibus vel, efficitur quis magna. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada.

Brand Now

SEO

Lorem ipsum dolor amet consectetur adipiscing elit. Nunc mi dui placerat eu faucibus vel, efficitur quis magna. Pellentesque habitant morbi tristique senectus et netus et malesuada.

Read More

Our Team

Alabama Recovery Coalition for the Financial Sector (ARCFS)

Alabama Recovery Coalition for the Financial Sector (ARCFS)   Territory Included:   The State of Alabama (first Coalition to cover an entire State)   Current…

Testimonials

  • Being a member of the RPCfirst has strengthened and expanded our knowledgebase at ChicagoFIRST. Working with others who share similar goals saves time, money and during an incident may even save lives.
    Mike Carano, Executive Director
    ChicagoFIRST

Our Partners