Last week, the RapidDeploy team joined thousands of public safety communications officials at the APCO 2023 conference in Nashville, TN. This four-day event covered public safety education, facilitated networking, new connections, and promoted learning about new innovations in 911.
During APCO, we sat down with clients and partners to learn about their experiences and gain insight into the topics and themes that they were most excited about.
During the keynote presentation, Mel Maier, Executive Director, APCO International, and Jeff Cohen Chief Counsel, and Director of Government Relations, APCO International, shared APCO’s vision for NG911 to be a transformative approach to emergency communication. This session highlighted critical factors impacting the future of NG911, including:
To support and drive education around this vision, APCO shared a comprehensive Definitive Guide to NG9-1-1. This tech-forward approach is like a superhero cape for emergency response – it's all about saving lives, which closely aligns with the mission of RapidDeploy.
APCO did a great job highlighting innovative approaches to solving staffing challenges. RapidDeploy's Steven Raucher and Todd Komanetsky, joined Jacob Saur, ECC Administrator Arlington County Department of Public Safety Communications and Emergency Management, to present "Getting Creative with ECC Staffing and Working from Home."
Cloud-based solutions, including products from RapidDeploy, have emerged as a beacon of hope, enabling ECCs to streamline operations, support remote working locations and further improve the overall experience of telecommunicators.
Jacob shared how Alexandria’s 911 center has addressed remote call taking as a strategy for employee retention. Over the years, increasing workloads and the introduction of new tools have extended training times, with almost three years required for training at their center. Arlington ECC implemented 12 remote call-taking stations in dispatch and two in remote fire dispatch.
Key highlights of their approach include:
APCO’s conference featured crucial discussions on funding, resources, regulatory updates, and legislative initiatives impacting ECCs.
Resources, open minds, improved workflows, and operational change are essential for ECCs to deploy new technologies seamlessly.
One concept emerged quickly during this conference. . . No one can complete this transformation to NG911 alone.
Of course, it takes time and money, but it also requires people to build relationships and work together. In the session about FirstNet Integration and Resources: Enhancing Emergency Response, we learned there is potential synergy between NG911 and FirstNet, focusing on the integration of network solutions to improve emergency response. The 911 community will need to break out of silos and form partnerships like never before.
At RapidDeploy, we are focused on collaboration and bringing different parts of public safety together to create the most impactful next generation 911 ecosystem.
We just launched Lightning, a new mobile app for first responders that will help to break down agency siloes, interoperability, and the continued need for shared access to critical data.
Artificial intelligence often gets a bad rap in the media and among the public. However, the APCO exhibit hall was flooded with AI technology to support the jobs of telecommunicators and drive more effective and efficient emergency response.
There were solutions for non-emergency call handling, transcription services, and AI-language translation. There is potential for automation of repetitive tasks that will free up our telecommunicators to prioritize and spend time on the things that are most important when it comes to saving lives.