PIER Updates Collaboration System for Emergency Response
- By Dian Schaffhauser
PIER Systems has launched version 6.0 of the PIER--Public Information Emergency Response--system. The intent of the PIER program is to allow public affairs staff to draft, edit, and send out a message to multiple audiences directly, without having to go through conventional mass communication channels. PIER also allows users to send out notifications such as SMS text messages, manage public inquiries and respond to media effectively.
Users can manage media and stakeholder contacts through an inquiry management system, which provides a central control point for public engagement, enabling a dispersed team to collaborate when responding to questions and comments. PIER 6.0 adds two important features to this system: "answers" enable the team to view pre-approved answers and distribute those to inquirers, and direct e-mail integration allows use of standard e-mail addresses to enter inquiries.
PIER 6.0 also integrates with Alertus' wall-mounted emergency beacon technology. The result is a central tool for notifications. Users have the option to send out a notification via SMS text message, text-to-voice messaging, e-mail, fax, and now through Alertus notification beacons.
Other features include an updated user interface enabling PIER users to more easily navigate the system. The new release includes a new HTML editor that makes adding multimedia documents such as videos and presentations easier.
The new version also delivers a revised conference bridge section that provides a convenient place to store and recall details about conference calls.
PIER higher ed customers include the University of North Carolina, Agnes Scott College in Decatur, GA, and the University of Houston.
Dian Schaffhauser is a senior contributing editor for 1105 Media's education publications THE Journal and Campus Technology. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or on Twitter @schaffhauser.