WSCC-RET provides 24-hour support to the residents of West Sussex, responding to all manner of disruptive events.
The team has a duty to respond to unforeseen and rapid increases in demand for their services, such as in the event of widespread emergencies or incidents, and its core function has four key aims:
WSCC-RET struggled to access critical resources – incident logs, key contact information, rotas etc. – when responding to emergency situations, because the previous incident management system (IMS) failed to support these core provisions.
This made it necessary to navigate several systems to access vital information, and incurred additional complications when working alongside other teams on an ongoing basis. Hope Blandamer, Resilience and Emergencies Advisor, said:
“We were struggling with havingdifferent resources in different places. We wanted something which would be easy for the team to manage on a day-to-day basis, but also simple to use in conjunction with other teams in an emergency situation.“
The recommendation from WSCC was to implement a fit-for-purpose incident response system that would improve emergency response and reduce the time taken to respond adequately to the incident.”
Soon after the smooth implementation of CIM, WSCC-RET were called upon to respond to a firein Worthing, a seaside town 10 miles west of Brighton. The fire had spread to several flats, and members of the Resilience and Emergencies Team were tasked with managing the re-location of residents to temporary accommodation.
With the facility of the CIM mobile app, the WSCC-RET members first on scene were able to accurately record critical details of those affected and upload this information, via the cloud, into the CIM database.
The time of each event, every action taken, and the contact details of each resident were immediately retrievable by every member of the WSCC-RET staff. This not only improved precision when contacting residents about re-housing but also streamlined the resolution of the incident itself.
Hope said: “Choosing CIM was a great decision. Using CIM, we no longer have to rely on disparate systems to access the information we need. Meanwhile, other WSCC departments, such as our communications team or press officers, can use the system for their own purposes, facilitating integration across departments.”
Thanks to the implementation of CIM, daily processes have become far more efficient and the time to effectively respond to and resolve emergencies has significantly reduced. Hope confirmed that the implementation of the system delivered a number of crucial improvements. Hope said:
“All my colleagues have recognised an improvement in their efficiency and output when using CIM compared to before. It is now well integrated into our way of working and has the information we need, when we need it.. The system is used every day by the Resilience and Emergencies Team, as well as by colleagues in other teams when called upon. From our perspective, we mostly rely on the incident log, where all our information is stored and where we can find a comprehensive report of what happened during the response to an incident.”