Five Keys to Improving Performance in Emergency Management Control Rooms

Caleb Hooper •

In emergency management control rooms, seconds count. Whether responding to 911 calls, handling natural or manmade disasters or protecting key infrastructure, operators like you must rapidly access, view, aggregate and share information maintained in multiple systems and delivered in disparate formats.

Turns out, this is not always easy to do. Control rooms get bogged down because isolated systems and workstations create information silos. You have to move from place to place to get at vital data, and collaboration becomes nearly impossible with one-at-a-time access.

The good news is that there are some really effective technology solutions that can solve these problems. High-performance KVM systems provide you an "at-the-desktop" experience from your work stations to any connected appliances, PCs or computing resources. As you look to improve your control room operations, consider how high-performance KVM technology can meet these five key requirements:

  • Share systems and promote collaboration. A very effective way to do this is using high-performance KVM systems, which offer simple access to an unlimited number of systems from any of your workstation. With just a few keystrokes, you can switch between systems in seconds—no moving from machine to machine, no waiting for access. This increases efficiency and collaboration, as both local and remote users can shift instantly between systems to share screens, sessions and data.

  • Make it a better working environment. By using KVM technology with remote extension capabilities, systems can be moved out of the control room for a more work-friendly environment. You need to have high fidelity experience even if your computer is not beside you. This requires KVM systems that remotely support all types of systems and peripherals and offer a pixel-perfect experience with no latency.

  • Make IT's job easier. Improving the user environment is mission-critical, but if making user access easier ends up costing IT a great deal more time, money and person-power, it's not a great solution. Just as technology needs to simplify the user's job, it needs to simplify IT processes for installing, provisioning, monitoring and troubleshooting systems. KVM systems that offer plug-and-play convenience bring systems online with minimal time and effort. In addition, KVM remote extension capabilities mean that equipment can be back-racked in a separate location, enabling IT to reduce risk and increase availability by keeping equipment in a properly secured and cooled environment. When you combine KVM systems with centralized remote management, maintenance and troubleshooting get even easier. Remote management can deliver a single source of truth about all assets in the control room. IT can improve the process of finding, connecting to and administering systems through a single console, as well as get real-time status information and instant diagnostics to forestall downtime and rapidly diagnose problems.

  • Keep running, no matter what. In any emergency management control room, operations must continue without interruption. Similarly, KVM systems provide the answer, keeping operations running smoothly even if a system goes down. Well-designed KVM systems eliminate any single point of failure and enable instant switching to hot standby systems while continuing to deliver a high-fidelity experience.

  • Future-proof the control room. Emergency management control rooms need to accommodate growth, bringing new users and systems online quickly without disruption or an enormous price tag. To expand your control room at the right cost, look for KVM systems that are vendor-agnostic, which means they support other systems and peripherals regardless of type, vendor or location and facilitate growth and change. It's also important that your technology vendor does not force you to purchase technology that either doesn't deliver the power and flexibility you need, or demands unnecessary expense.

Here at Vertiv, we offer solutions for every type of emergency management control room, providing flexible solutions that can grow and evolve right along with your business. All of the Avocent high-performance solutions can be customized to deliver an operating environment that exactly matches your business requirements.

  

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