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Advanced Technology That Improves Communication

Loblaw Companies Limited shaped and in many aspects created the modern supermarket. Self-serve style supermarkets were an innovation, and the chain had over 1,000 locations with a new set of headaches to handle. Communication was top priority. That’s where HipLink joined Loblaw Companies Limited and had to make sure Canada’s largest food distributor kept up with the demand.

 

The Basic Issue

 

Loblaw’s technical support group had a lot riding on their shoulders. They oversaw the software that controls distribution, inventory, and billing departments (among others). They worked hard to make sure systems stayed active, but no program is perfect. When one system went offline, they had to be prepared to spring into action. Communication was key. Paging key personnel or placing a few calls was not enough. Too many calls went unanswered and pages were lost. They needed a faster, real time way to connect with staff on location to ensure the downtime doesn’t impact the entire business.

 

Technical Problems

 

Basic solutions like calling and paging were used for years, but as technology advanced, the need for a more efficient way to communicate became imperative. It can become quite easy for things to go wrong when you’re picking up a phone or sending a page. Even when the system is working perfectly, it’s time intensive and eats resources that the technical support group could be placing elsewhere.

 

The problem with replacing the system, however, had to do with size and scalability. Using phones and pagers wasn’t working perfectly, but it was working alright: orders were mostly getting filled, however the communication through manual paging and phone calls was very time consuming. Loblaw concern was that they didn’t want to jump from a workable, inefficient solution to one with greater drawbacks. “Out of the frying pan, into the fire” could drastically impact the business. Moving forward with an enterprise-wide solution wasn’t feasible. Choosing a difficult to implement solution wouldn’t allow them to roll it out to the rest of the company in stages. They were at a standstill until they found HipLink.

 

HipLink’s Flexible Solution

 

HipLink offered the functionality of other systems but with the opportunity to quickly launch a simple, straightforward solution that solved their immediate problems. Loblaw was able to see HipLink in action before committing to an enterprise-level system upgrade. It installed quickly and barely interrupted any workflow. Scaling was simple. HipLink rose to meet the challenges and impressed the support team with its responsiveness and ease of use.

 

Loblaw is a large company, but you don’t have to be a large company to benefit from HipLink. Wireless communication is key to handling time-critical, high impact information. HipLink is a powerhouse, whether it's used in one department or all of them. Best of all, it grows along with your business.

 

 

 

To read the full case study, click here.  

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Saving Lives through Improved Communication

Medical centers are in the business of saving lives, making patient survival rates heavily dependent on the expediency and efficiency of the medical center’s communication methods. For instance, the ER nurse activates the trauma teams and the doctors and staff need the paging system to keep each other informed of developing situations and emergency cases. Unfortunately, the most common technical solutions for medical communication are outdated and inflexible. 

 

The Oklahoma Medical Center

Medical centers need very specific communication systems in order to meet HIPPA standards which require that sensitive information is protected. This results in limited upgrade options that can restrict opportunities for growth and improvement. However, medical centers do grow. One of the primary problems with an existing system at Oklahoma Medical Center was its failure to keep pace with other key systems. The distributor’s poor customer service and technical support made it difficult to fix problems or improve existing flaws.

 

An Oklahoma Medical Center needed more from their communication service. They needed hardware and software that could reach doctors and specialists on any device or platform. Any potential solution would have to reach staff on various carriers. A web-based graphical user interface (GUI) would simplify communication. Most importantly, the new system needed to be reliable, and it needed to back up that reliability with redundancies.

 

HipLink’s Solution

HipLink drew the Oklahoma Medical Center’s attention with the HipLink Desktop Messaging solution. It started at the heart of the medical center’s system by addressing the need for a web-based graphical user interface. This centralized system creates a natural shortcut to processes that took far longer under the old system. As departments were able to use templates for rapid messaging, first responders no longer had to go through phone trees. In addition, on-duty staff could rely on their messaging system to alert them in emergencies.

 

HipLink also implemented carrier redundancy. The system provided additional reliability with automatic failover and carrier support. With the system’s flexibility, the medical center is free to grow and adapt to new technology. This is thanks to HipLink’s scalable products, which transfer easily between different platforms, devices, and carriers.

 

A Brighter Future for Patients

The centralized solutions that HipLink brought to the Oklahoma Medical Center immediately eased the center’s mission to provide the best quality care to patients. With the new system in place, doctors and staff can rely on their paging system. It reaches everyone, cuts down wasted time, and is already saving lives.

 

Time is everything in a medical center, especially one with the diverse range of services offered by the Oklahoma Medical Center. HipLink’s centralized communication system made it possible to communicate faster, easier, and more reliably. Ambulance crews can get information back quickly, and data goes out to all of the relevant teams rapidly. Most importantly, HipLink remains involved with their system, providing the support the medical center requires. 

 

 

Read our case study HERE.

 

 

 

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How Enterprises Can Improve Their Crisis Management Strategy

 

There is a shooter in the building.  A patient is missing.  A tornado is seven minutes away.  There is a major fire in the building.  Enterprises will inevitably face crises.  Preparation is key to effective crisis response management. If there is a shooter in the building, the facility is locked down and the police are notified.  This scenario should also include a previously prepared, very rapid announcement to the entire staff for everyone to stay where they are, lock the doors, and hide. Being prepared in this situation could save many lives by simply sending a message – if the messaging system itself is effective. 

 

In today’s world, wireless communication is the most effective method of alerting the right people at the right time that there is a crisis.  Regardless of the time of day or night, wireless communication ensures that, once notified, team members can work together to effectively respond in a crisis.

 

Mass Notification Software

 

The wireless infrastructure consists of many different carriers using varying protocols.  With individuals and enterprises having different needs and tastes, it is impossible for every person to use the exact same wireless device.  The key is to make all the different devices work together. 

 

HipLink is wireless messaging software providing enterprises, law enforcement, fire departments, utilities, and emergency dispatch centers text and voice messaging capabilities to any mobile device and carrier.  A web-based collaborative software that supports your enterprise before, during, and after an emergency, HipLink can work as a stand-alone messaging system or be integrated with virtually any software – including computer dispatch systems, PBXs, or other software for the wireless alert notification component.  Whether you need to emergently notify 50 individuals, 5,000 individuals, or an entire city, HipLink is an established, proven emergency alert system that will meet your mass notification needs. 

 

A robust, secure, and highly scalable wireless communications software, HipLink’s mass notification software has some of the following key features:

 

  • Alerts and notifications under a single umbrella to the widest possible range of devices: phones, pagers, fax machines, email, smartphones, etc.
  • Automatically switch communication protocols or networks when a disaster knocks out a key piece of infrastructure
  • Integrated mapping application sends alerts to very specific areas
  • Dispatch IPAWS from HipLink directly
  • Geographically target WEA, EAS, NWEM, COG to COG, and public feeds
  • Public-facing web sign-up module lets citizens specify the best means of communications

 

Notify the Right Groups at the Right Time

 

Grouping is a major feature of HipLink software that will improve your organization's crisis management strategy by ensuring the correct messages or tasks are assigned to the right individuals at any time, all the time.  These types of groups are:

 

  • Broadcast groups – everyone in the group receives the message
  • On-duty groups – allows for scheduled resources and alerts to be sent to particular groups at any time
  • Rotate groups – allows for even distribution
  • Escalation groups – allow for mission critical alerts that must be answered
  • Subscription Groups – individuals can opt in to receive updates
  • Follow-Me Groups – multiple receivers can be set up for one individual

 

A truly remarkable feature of HipLink is any group can be nested inside another group.  With this feature, an enterprise is equipped with powerful tools to easily build response groups within the organization. 

 

Unlimited Degrees of Permissions

 

If administration and upkeep are dependent on one unit in an enterprise, even the most robust solution can be inadequate.  HipLink Department Feature allows for distribution of administration and user functions to be delegated while still maintaining control.  Unlimited degrees of permissions can be assigned.  Smaller departments can support their own users, update schedules, and give permissions, ensuring that your wireless platform is always maintained and up-to-date with very little, if any, impact on the enterprise. 

 

Prepare, Respond, Recover

 

Utilizing HipLink, an enterprise is supported before, during, and after a crisis.  To prepare, an organization can perform test drills and see which areas need improvement, test carrier efficiency, assign responsibilities for responses, and more.  During a crisis, HipLink sends the most powerful alert notifications to all devices.  It allows one to see real-time status of resources, execute a response plan from devices, as well as perform remote applications from devices.  To aid in recovering from a crisis sooner, HipLink provides a performed detailed analysis of personnel response, carrier efficiency, and system performance.  This enables an enterprise to assess deficiencies and plan for faster responses in the event of future crises.

 

Maximum Reliability

 

In the event of a crisis, one of the very worst things that can happen is failure of the primary message delivery method.  The chance of this occurring with HipLink is non-existent, as HipLink has built-in failover functionality at the carrier level and the receiver level.  This means the message will be delivered even if the primary delivery method should fail. 

 

In the event of a crisis, you certainly want the best possible system for mass notification, alerts, and messaging to ensure the safety of your employees as well as protect your enterprise.  Integrating HipLink into your existing software is certain to improve your enterprise’s crisis management strategy.  For more information, contact HipLink at 800-524-7503.

  

 

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