Collaboration with key stakeholders

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Contributor Info
Reference Group Emergency Preparation, Volunteering, Business Continuity
Additional Contributors Tim Miller, Eileen Culleton


The Emergency Preparation and Volunteering Reference Groups will be managing the overall development of content for this section and will be a point of contact for questions or help. We are still seeking nominations for both groups, so if you are interested, please visit the Reference Groups information page on the blog and contact us.

Otherwise, please jump in and make a start with adding content. If you aleady have guidelines for use for emergency communications, please adapt them to develop generic guidelines for use by everyone. Also, (if you have permission), please link to them in the section for your industry sector and also in "References and Links".

Contents

Introduction

Social media tools for collaboration

Yammer

Yammer is a "Facebook for business" which can be an invaluable tool during an emergency to maintain communication with and collaborate with key stakeholders; agencies, volunteer groups, and suppliers. This involves establishing groups beforehand.

Key tips
- Establish groups that need to collaborate directly during an emergency and start sharing information
- Download the mobile applications onto corporate mobile phones and tablets (eg Ipad)
- Post important links, photos and videos to share with groups
- Post files to share with key groups
- Use 'Question' function to post questions to inform your situation reports eg buildings damaged, roads closed etc
- Post updates by email to groups

Skype

Key Tips

  • Use for virtual meetings with key stakeholders, to share links and send messages.
  • Hold Skype meetings during 'business as usual'

Video on how to use Skype for business

  • Download the mobile applications onto corporate mobile phones and tablets (eg Ipad)

Video on how to use Skype for business


Google Plus

Key Tips

  • Use for virtual meetings with key stakeholders, to share links and send messages
  • Setup your "Circles" beforehand and start sharing information
  • Hold a "Hangout" meeting during 'business as usual'


Learn more about how to use Google Plus: Circles, Sharing and Hangouts

Google Docs

Key Tips

  • Use to collaborate virtually in real time on documents
  • Anyone anywhere with an internet connection can access (you can also restrict access)
  • Can be used to aggregate information in real time eg available resources
  • Reduce errors as people can directly enter information from location
  • Increases response times as there is no delay in getting information entered by one person, can be done in real time from location
  • Can be sent as a link via email (or as an attachment), a Tweet, posted on the wall of a Facebook Account, Yammer Account
  • Can embed onto your website

Google Docs include:

  • Word docs
  • Spreadsheets
  • Forms

Example

More tips and case studies are available on Google Crisis Response site


For How To Guides visit Get Started With Using Google Docs

Google Fusion Tables

Google Fusion Tables enable organisations to gather, visualize and share data online with employees and other response organizations and constituents.

Key Tips:

  • Visualize your data from shelter lists to power outages instantly as a map or a chart.
  • Identify data patterns to aid in crisis decision making
  • Show the world your work in real time by embedding your map or chart in a web page
  • Collaborate with other responders by merging your data, allowing you to see all important related information in one place


Examples on the Google Crisis Response site include:

  • Map of the London riots showing English indices of deprivation and riot locations
  • Map of Japanese Tsunami road status

See the Google Crisis Response sitefor "How to" guides


Wikis

Key Tips

  • Use to collaborate virtually in real time
  • Anyone anywhere with an internet connection can access (you can also restrict access)
  • Can be used to aggregate information in real time eg available resources
  • Reduce errors as people can directly enter information from location
  • Increases response times as there is no delay in getting information entered by one person, can be done in real time from location
  • Can be sent as a link via email (or as an attachment), a Tweet, posted on the wall of a Facebook Account, Yammer Account
  • Can embed onto your website


Facebook

Key tips
- Link to key stakeholders via 'Likes'
- List emergency agencies contact details including Facebook and Twitter channels
- Use the Facebook Notes Page to provide links to key emergency resources provided by other agencies eg

Emergency Volunteering Readiness Index

YouTube video on how to sandbag your property

Smart phone applications for emergencies eg Fires Near Me NSW Android Smartphone App


- Consider adding badges and buttons (yours or an emergency agency) to your own site and encourage the public to add to their site


Twitter

Key tips
- Re-tweet messages from other emergency agencies - When re-tweeting make sure you add the time and the #hashtag


YouTube

Key tips
-'Friend' other emergency agencies - Add emergency information videos to your channel 'favourites'


Integrated Websites

US European Command site Source: “The December List: Best Uses of Social Media by Public Agencies”, 30 November 30, 2011, IDisaster 2.0 by Kim Stephens, [1]

An integrated community website combines all of the real-time messages of your organisation/agency and other key agencies onto one page, providing a one-stop shop for information.

For example during a disaster, your site could include:

  • Your organisation's Twitter
  • The feed from Emergency Agencies

Example: The US European Command

1. Make your social media “buttons” present and readily accessible at the top of the homepage;

2. Connect your blog with only a “tease” visible–with a picture;

3. Embed videos on the site;

4. Make it highly “shareable”, providing a way to tweet, +1, and “Like” all of the articles and videos;

5. Feed the website with a stream of real-time content called “News from the Wires”;

6. Position a photo stream somewhere highly visible, such as in the middle of the page;

7. Allow it to be seen in multiple languages (key for a European Command site) by using an application such as Google Translate;

8. Rotate top stories rotate on the homepage for visual interest.

Source: “The December List: Best Uses of Social Media by Public Agencies”, 30 November 30, 2011, IDisaster 2.0 by Kim Stephens, [2]

Google Sites

Google Sites (see Google Crisis Response) can be used to easily create and update a website with critical response information from anywhere at any time. You can display a variety of important information in one place—including forms to collect information, videos of the crisis, photos of the devastation, and maps that illustrate resources. Eg:

  • Create a simple website quickly without having to hire a web developer or know any HTML programming
  • Customize the look and feel of your site to show it’s from your organization
  • Create sub-pages to keep your content organized and easy for viewers to locate
  • Protect your information by keeping your site as private or public as you'd like


Case studies on Google Crisis Response include Save the Children websites

Resources on the site include a Getting Started guide and a video.

Maps

There are a number of mapping tools available for collaboration both inside the organisation, between organisations and with the public. Please see the Mapping tools page

Collaborating with Volunteer Technical Communities (VTCs)

Volunteer technical communities (VTCs) can play an invaluable role in emergencies including:

  • Mapping emergency areas online and aggregating, analysing and posting information on the impact and needs
  • Sharing and amplifying official emergency messages via social media
  • Monitoring messages and cries for help from the public via social media and sms
  • Verifying messages posted via social media, sms and crowdsource maps
  • Providing 24 hour assistance due to geographic dispersal of volunteers across time zones

The key challenge is integrating VTCs with emergency response organisations to maximise and leverage the emergency response for the public benefit.

VTC Groups include:
VOST - Virtual Operations Support Team (also see below for more details): [3]
Digital Humanitarian Network: [4]
Humanity Road: [5]
Crisis Commons: [6]
Standby Task Force: [7]
Crisis Mappers: [8]


VOST - Virtual Operations Support Team
Virtual Operations Support Teams (VOST) as applied to emergency management and disaster recovery is an effort to make use of new communication technologies and social media tools so that a team of trusted agents can lend support via the internet to those on-site who may otherwise be overwhelmed by the volume of data generated during a disaster. A VOST is activated to perform specific functions in support of affected organizations & jurisdictions. Each VOST has a Team Leader that reports directly to the affected organization/ jurisidiction.

If additional VOSTs are needed, a Virtual Operations Support Group (VOSG - a team of teams) may be established to coordinate the work of the VOSTs to maintain an effective span of control. The VOSG has a Group Supervisor who reports to the affected organization/jurisdiction. The VOST Leaders report to the Group Supervisor. Since not all EOC's have social media monitoring processes built in, a VOST acts like a strike-team asset, similar to an Incident Management Team (IMT) or other type of single-asset or skilled strike team for deployment. VOSTS are comprised of individuals working in shifts, engaging with the public using social media. Tasks include, but are not limited to:

  • identifying and monitoring relevant social media networks and sites that emerge during and in the immediate aftermath of an event, active in both the public and private sectors.
  • assisting the public in finding official & verified sources of information
  • correcting misinformation (Mythbusters)
  • temporarily taking over or assisting with official agency social media accounts to help manage the additional workload
  • creating new social media accounts for agencies that do not already have them set up
  • archiving

Slideshare: VOST Basics
Blog: VOST Leadership Coalition


Guidelines

Case Studies

References and Links

  • Social media use in the Victorian floods report 2011 [10]
  • American Red Cross research into social media 2011 [11]
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