rapid response Archives | SunGard Public Sector
Thursday, August 18, 2016

ONESolution Computer Aided Dispatch (CAD) from SunGard Public Sector connects emergency responders and dispatch personnel to life-saving information. However, before it’s deployed in the field, the software must be load tested to ensure it holds up to real-world demands and real-world users. The process helps to establish baseline metrics, such as checking for load, volume, and scalability, while identifying bottlenecks and applying fixes for improvement. Load testing is commonly used, but particularly crucial, in producing simulations that mirror real life incidents – often high pressure situations, when lives are at stake.

SunGard Public Sector recently enlisted the help of Microsoft to load test the capacity of its ONESolution CAD at large-scale implementations for Tier 1 agencies across the country. Over the course of two weeks of load testing at a Microsoft lab, the SunGard Public Sector team was pleased to see that ONESolution CAD successfully processed 1,000 calls per hour, with all the measured transactions executing subsecond. This load test included 200 CAD workstations and simulated over 5,000 mobiles. Additionally, most of the transactions like E911, arrive, at hospital, reset watchdog timer, and clearing durations were all processed in under ½ a second.

In short, ONESolution CAD met or exceeded the Performance Acceptance Criteria (PAC) as defined by the test plan, proving the software, already widely used in agencies across the United States, is more than capable of handling the demands of major cities and counties.

With 30 years’ experience providing software solutions to PSAPs, SunGard Public Sector understands that the most important aspect of a CAD system is its reliability and performance. The standards set at the Microsoft lab continues in the SunGard environment with the testing of each new release of ONESolution CAD, using the same scenarios and measurements that exceed the demands of large agencies.

We know that software reliability is paramount to our public safety customers and it is also of utmost importance to SunGard Public Sector.

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Wednesday, July 8, 2015

KristyDalton-web

By Kristy Dalton

Whether it be a natural disaster or a criminal act, an emergency in the community requires public agencies to spring into action. Make sure you include your digital strategy as a part of your emergency response preparations. What I consider digital strategy involves the broad areas of social media, email communications and your agency’s website.

Your agency might be very well trained for emergency response, but there is always room to reiterate the value of reviewing how digital tools complement the overall picture. We don’t want the webmaster or social media coordinator to be left out of response planning. You may already have an offline contact list of important emergency contacts, including your director and the Public Information Officer. Make sure to also add contacts that manage your agencies digital presence, including the webmaster and the social media lead.

Website Strategy in Emergencies

Something you should be doing right now is planning your website strategy for emergency situations. Say there’s a blizzard in your area and you have information about street closures, plowing, warming centers – whatever needs to be communicated with the public. Plan for how this will be integrated with your website. Where will this information reside? Do you have an emergency section that is ‘turned on’ when the emergency operations center activates?

A typical feature is to have an emergency alert on the homepage – perhaps bright red or orange – that gains the attention of visitors. For your emergency strategy, understand how this is section is activated, who activates it, and establish protocol for if that individual is not available. Make sure everything is documented.

Focusing on Social 

One reason I encourage agencies to have a social media strategy during crisis situations is that using social platforms reduces the load on your official website. There have been situations where government websites have crashed due to massive amounts of traffic during an emergency. There will be a large spike in traffic if you look at the analytics for even small events, such as a morning snowfall.

It’s very important to establish a lead agency for social media early on in the incident. Typically, this will mimic whom the incident commanders have identified as the lead agency for response purposes. In terms of social media, that agency will be the primary poster of original information, and your job (say, as the agency next door), will be to support them. You will re-tweet their tweets, share their Facebook posts, and point to them for most new announcements about the situation. If you’re part of the lead agency, that role is yours.

Resources

Hashtag #SMEM, stands for ‘social media emergency management’. A community of emergency managers hosts a Friday #SMEMCHAT on Twitter at 12:30pm EST to share best practices on managing social media in an emergency situation. I also encourage you to check out resources by crisis management expert, Melissa Agnes. Her crisis intelligence podcast regularly focuses on digital strategy.

 

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