As reports of explosions and small arms fire at Istanbul airport flashed across TV news screens, countless organizational leaders asked the same questions: “Do we have anyone there right now? Are they okay?” As critical events unfold around the world -- terrorist attacks in Europe & Africa, earthquakes in Asia -- answering those questions quickly and efficiently is the launch pad for next steps: If travelers left the country two days before, then a sigh of relief. On the other hand if travelers are on the ground at the airport where bombs exploded or staying at the hotel under attack you may have a crisis to manage. Either way, it starts with knowing who is where.
Achieving accountability -- the location and status -- of personnel who may be in the vicinity of an evolving incident is an essential part of emergency response and a key component in providing duty of care. Once thought of as primarily focused on those traveling to “high risk” countries, recent world events are a reminder that global organizations need to know who is in Brussels or Istanbul as well as Kabul. Broadly speaking, there are three main options:
Joe Gleason is Director, Risk Management Services at AHT Insurance* where he provides guidance and assistance to international development and private sector clients by helping them evaluate risk and maximize the effectiveness of mitigation and response measures in an increasingly complex global operating environment.
*Disclosure: AHT Insurance is an INSSA Corporate Supporter. Any views and opinions expressed are those of AHT Insurance and do not necessarily reflect those of INSSA and should not be construed as an endorsement by INSSA, its staff, or its members.