Loudon County E-911 is the primary PSAP for Loudon County, Tennessee serving over 40,000 citizens with an annual call volume of over 55,000 calls including law enforcement, fire service, and emergency medical dispatch.
Loudon County was dissatisfied with their public safety call-handling support and ready for the next level. Director Jennifer Estes wanted better training and support throughout the agency’s call-taking process. Their previous investment in 911 protocol software was not helping them meet either their training needs or their goals for the level of service they wanted to provide.
Put simply, Loudon County E-911 was ready for change. Specifically, they were ready to:
- Initiate training that empowers dispatchers and creates uniform expectations.
- Improve call-handling quality and consistency.
- Put in place proactive call assessment operations that advance their individual agency’s standard of care.
- Get everyone in the organization on the same page including staff and administrators.
Having established a baseline standard of care, Loudon County was looking for the tools, training, and processes to raise that standard of care and tackle potential problems before they emerged. Loudon County was looking to provide the best possible service to meet their community’s specific needs and expectations.
After carefully reviewing all of the industry solutions, Director Estes chose PowerPhone’s Total Response solution because it provided the training, tools, and processes to empower her agency to both define and achieve their higher standard of care.
She felt that Total Response would empower her call handlers to consistently and professionally respond to the entirety of each call without mandating rigid third-party checklists or using an old-fashioned approach of just focusing on the discipline. In today’s environment, calls are much more complex and she wanted to make sure her staff had the support they needed.
Loudon County E-911 implemented Total Response to include CACH Standard software (interfaced with their Southern CAD), certification training, and proactive call assessment processes.
Prior to adopting Total Response, Loudon County E-911 had twenty-one dispatchers with EMD certifications from a different vendor. Since Loudon County wanted their staff to receive outstanding certification training, they had each member complete PowerPhone’s combination training of Emergency Medical Dispatch (EMD), Fire Service Dispatch (FSD) and Law Enforcement Dispatch (LED). After the transition, future hires and recertifications enrolled in Total Response’s online courses.
PowerPhone also provided system training for managers and end users, as well as administration training to help Loudon County learn and maintain the system. Call Assessment training provided the means for Loudon County to accomplish their goal of creating a formal quality assessment program for emergency calls.
Assessment training centered on empowering the team to identify areas that needed improvement and to develop the processes for addressing such areas before they became a performance issue.
Director Jennifer Estes has seen considerable benefits since implementing the Total Response solution for public safety call handling, “Total Response has increased our staff’s level of professionalism and given them more confidence.”
Consistency and quality are the two areas where Loudon County E-911’s call handling have most improved. “I like that everyone is operating on the same page,” says Director Estes, “from my standpoint as an administrator, it is comforting to know we are giving them the tools they need to complete their jobs and covering our liability with it.”
Improvements to Loudon County E-911’s operations are ongoing with Total Response’s call assessment. Instead of relying solely on a vendor-provided quality assurance checklist, Loudon County compares call-handling performance against their own defined standard of care.
Loudon County’s standard of care contains clear guidelines and expectations for call handlers to reference throughout their careers. With these improvements, Loudon County has reached accreditation status with PowerPhone and been recognized for this accomplishment.