Enterprise Weather Alerting Applications Buying Guide
What is an enterprise weather alerting application and what should you look for when considering one? This enterprise weather alerting applications buying guide will answer these questions and more!
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Are you using the right weather data and technology?
If you’re part of a big business, you know there are a lot of moving parts. Employees, board members, shareholders, partners, equipment, tools, and you can’t forget the weather!
Weather is probably in your plan already. But do you have the right weather information? With over 8,000 Android apps and 24,000 iPhone apps with the word “weather” in their title, it’s hard to tell.
You want the best weather information to keep your employees safe and follow severe weather protocol, so it’s important that you don’t put your trust in the wrong weather applications. According to a 2017 ForecastWatch report, even the best of those thousands of weather apps are only accurate a little over 70% of the time.
So who should your organization trust?
In this buying guide, we’ll explore some of the most important aspects of a strong enterprise weather alerting solution. Specifically, we’ll compare weather network technology differences like:
Free vs. Commercial Weather Data
Multiple Inconsistent Apps vs. One Consistent Source of Truth
We’ll also compare other key features that set superior applications apart from others, like:
Role-Based Alert Configuration
Real-Time, Hyperlocal Updates
Easy Setup & Implementation
When it comes to the science of meteorology, data is key.
Free weather apps are free for a reason: the quality of the data simply isn’t the same as it is in comprehensive weather intelligence solutions. This section of the buying guide dissects the two key technology features of the leading mobile weather applications in the marketplace today.
Weather Data Quality: FREE VS. COMMERCIAL
First let’s look at the difference between free and commercial weather data. Not all weather data is created equal. In fact, a small difference in quality of weather data can mean a big difference for your weather safety actions.
While most companies rely on free weather applications that gather weather data from the nearest airport and update every hour, commercial-grade weather apps are hyperlocal and update within seconds. Meaning your organization can make the right decision faster and increase overall situational awareness.
Since weather data quality is so important, we’ll take a look at key differences in weather app weather data sources available today.
FREE VS. COMMERCIAL DATA FEATURES
|PROXIMITY||Spread out weather sensors at remote locations like airports and farms, which often face adverse conditions and can be too far from your business to provide accurate conditions, forecasts, and alerts.||Hyperlocal weather data from professional-grade weather stations at a neighborhood level, giving your organization the power to make the most accurate weather-related decisions for your exact locations.|
|ACCURACY||Includes personal weather station data from weather enthusiasts, who don’t calibrate their stations to ensure data accuracy.||Data from regularly-calibrated weather stations, checked by our meteorologists on a weekly basis to ensure data accuracy for critical enterprise operations.|
|FREQUENCY||Updates that can be as far apart as 3-4 hours. Some free weather data sources claim to be “real-time” but only update every 15-minutes, which is too long to provide enterprises with the critical data they need to make weather-related decisions.||Real-time conditions updates up to every 10 seconds, so decision-makers have more timley, proactive weather data when they need it most.|
|LIGHTNING TECHNOLOGY||Alerts solely on cloud-to-ground lightning strikes, which only make up approximately 20% of all lightning discharges||Commercial weather data from Earth Networks includes total lightning (cloud-to-ground + in-cloud) providing advanced lead times for thunderstorms, microbursts, hail, and tornadoes|
ALERTING RELIABILITY: DIFFERENT SOURCES VS. ONE CONSISTENT SOURCE OF TRUTH
Not only does the quality of your weather app’s data matter, but consistency across your organization matters, too. How can employees follow proper protocol if they have conflicting weather forecasts?It’s not enough to have the power of commercial-grade weather data in
their hands. They need to have the same data to eliminate disagreements and encourage a collaborative response. Let’s discuss the key differences between using multiple weather applications and one comprehensive weather solution.
MULTIPLE WEATHER APPLICATIONS
ONE CONSISTENT SOURCE OF TRUTH
|Team members may use different applications with conflicting weather messaging and alerts, leading to confusion, arguments, or inaction.||One organization-wide weather hub that standardizes weather information to avoid conflicting or inaccurate weather data.|
|Various weather applications have different alert parameters, alerting thresholds, or sometimes don’t even have alerts at all.||Custom notifications for different team members, multiple locations, and weather decisions sent directly to their phones when they need them.|
|A majority of weather applications do not alert users on dangerous weather conditions unless they open the application.||Push alerting ensures that team members receive severe weather alerts on their home screen without having to open the application.|
KEY FEATURES OF ENTERPRISE WEATHER ALERTING APPLICATIONS
Big businesses can mean big profits, but it also means big risk. You can’t control the weather, but you can control how your organization reacts to it. That’s where the best enterprise weather alerting applications come into play. While your weather application should be commercial-grade and include push notifications, you should also look for the following important features when evaluating a comprehensive weather solution for your organization.
ROLE-BASED ALERT CONFIGURATION
The best weather applications for your enterprise are the ones you can customize.
There is no “one-size-fits-all” approach for large organizations with multiple locations, departments, and critical weather threats. That’s where role-based configuration comes into play. With role-based configuration on your enterprise weather app, administrators can control how and when your organization takes action; making sure weather policy compliance is adhered to and the right employees receive the right alerts at the right time.
Streamline your organization’s weather response plans by including critical personnel and silencing alerts for those who are off-the-clock
Prevent end user opt-out of of push alerts sent to Android and iOS devices, ensuring they always know when to take action and do not have an excuse if the correct actions are ignored
Deliver alerts based on the user’s mobile device location, so it doesn’t matter where they are. Even if they’re at a different on-site location or off your organization’s property, they can still receive location-based alerts
REAL-TIME, HYPERLOCAL UPDATES
It doesn’t matter what the weather was like an hour ago. Your organization needs to know what the weather is now. That’s where real-time weather information comes into play. Employees should also be able to access weather data from their exact locations, not the nearest airport. Hyperlocal weather data refers to current conditions, weather forecasts and alerts on a neighborhood level.
Your employees can check dozens of weather conditions as they’re happening, with many conditions updating by the minute, for the most accurate look at the current weather
Look for commercial weather applications that have a network of professional-grade weather stations near your operating locations
or can install them right at your locations
Do you have skeptics in your organization? Let them investigate alerts with real-time lightning strikes and radar on our mobile weather map; built directly into the enterprise application. They can even show guests to help keep them sheltered and safe
EASY SETUP & IMPLEMENTATION
Severe weather can strike at any time, so your organization always needs to be ready. Investing in an enterprise weather altering system is the first step, but it should be a quick one. No one likes purchasing a tool that’s difficult to set up and even more difficult for your employees to use. Being able to learn and implement an enterprise weather alerting solution quickly is key for overall weather preparedness at any organization.
Administrators can get started quickly, setting up roles, locations, and alerts
Applications can be downloaded by employees or pre-downloaded on company phones
Enterprise weather apps should be easy for end-users to understand, letting them monitor weather and take actions without hesitation
Enterprise Weather Alerting Application Summary
The best enterprise weather alerting applications aim to standardize weather data and streamline weather response plans across larger organizations.
Using a free weather application for your enterprise weather alerting needs seems like it’s better than nothing, but it can actually land your organization in trouble. Free weather applications can lead to catastrophic results at your large organization, including too many sources of information, inaccurate information, and inaction. The best enterprise weather alerting applications empower large organizations to get everyone and every operating location on the same page for weather monitoring and alerting.
Sferic Connect is the number one tool for weather safety management at large organizations. The Sferic Connect mobile application leverages all the optimal features included in this buying guide, along with a helpful support team that makes the onboarding process quick and easy. Interested in learning more about what separates Earth Networks’ Sferic Connect from other enterprise weather alerting solutions? Head over to our product page to learn more.