An Introduction to WatchKeeper
An Introduction to WatchKeeper
. 5 min read
Launching on March 11th, WatchKeeper is a new critical event management platform.
The Covid-19 crisis has shown that we are all susceptible to critical events and that operational resiliency must now be a fundamental pillar of any business strategy. However, beyond the pandemic and its far reaching impacts, 2020 demonstrated that ‘normal’ physical security risks, such as tropical storms, civil unrest, wildfires and extreme weather events, are increasing in frequency and severity.
Yet the way most organisations identify and respond to these critical events relies on antiquated methods of risk monitoring and communication methods which are predominantly limited to email chains or instant message groups. Furthermore, critical data on where assets, people, critical business operations or supply chains are located is often siloed in different departments or held on disparate systems. Not only does this leave operations and assets vulnerable to disruption or damage, but it can ultimately endanger the life safety of personnel.
Launching on March 11th, WatchKeeper is a new critical event management platform that overcomes these challenges by ensuring complete situational awareness. WatchKeeper’s platform unifies organisations’ assets and personnel alongside live risk-feed data into one real-time mapping display. It is a complete end-to-end crisis management tool. Users can set custom risk event alerts, manage the response, create briefings and more — all in one platform.
The problem with crisis management
The vast majority of organisations rely on a range of slow and manual processes for preparing, monitoring and responding to risk events. Risk data from public, private and proprietary sources sits on separate platforms, while information on asset, employee or critical business operations are typically siloed in different internal departments. Decision-makers and security teams rarely have all the information at hand to make fast, effective decisions that could save lives or millions in operational losses. Threat mitigation is complicated further by responders being hard to locate and crisis management plans often unavailable to on-the-ground response teams.
Some organisations have turned to critical event management platforms to overcome issues of speed. But existing platforms are costly, inflexible and complex. Most organisations are unable to spend hundreds of thousands of dollars per year, and those that do lack functionality and limit their customer’s integrations.
WatchKeeper was created to tackle existing limitations with critical event management while providing an affordable and customisable platform and service.
A central aspect of WatchKeeper is its intuitive and seamless design. The platform is based around a map, from which users can easily visualise their assets and risk events. From here one can access key features via a single click. No longer do users need to check or update numerous systems. Alerting, crisis response plans, briefings, mass notifications and much more are finally all in one place.
In addition to its modern, intuitive design, WatchKeeper allows for complete customisation of the platform. Users can set custom alerts for risk events and pick the data or integrations that are relevant to them. Organisations are no longer limited by providers’ own services, as WatchKeeper is vendor agnostic. Whether users want Slack alerts for hurricanes, their traveller data integrated from a third-party application, or a niche real-time data source mapped, WatchKeeper allows users to control their platform.
With this customisation comes flexible pricing. Most organisations do not have large budgets to spend and WatchKeeper recognises this. Instead, organisations can select a subscription plan which includes the specific features and data that is most important to their operational needs. As users’ needs evolve over time, so can their subscription.
WatchKeeper was also designed to avoid a lengthy onboarding and training process. Once organisations have picked their needs and subscriptions, they can get started straight away.
WatchKeeper’s goal is to make the world more resilient to high-impact events. Whether risk events are caused by societal unrest, natural disasters or terrorism, WatchKeeper identifies and alerts clients in real-time. By bringing efficient and affordable critical event management solutions to businesses and organisations who need them, WatchKeeper is making society as a whole more resilient to hazards which will only become more frequent and severe.
WatchKeeper is officially launching its new critical event management platform on March 11th. Over the next month, we will dive in deeper into the unique advantages of the WatchKeeper platform.
Founded in 2018 by Hugh Farquhar and Dan Whatmuff, WatchKeeper is the product of their extensive security and technology experience. Hugh has over 15 years experience in corporate security, including as Chief of Staff to Citibank’s Chief Security Officer in New York. Meanwhile, Dan has spent 12 years building and designing systems for high-security projects, including for Transport for London, the European Space Agency and the UK Home Office.
After joining Geovation, a UK government-backed accelerator programme, WatchKeeper embarked on building their pilot programme. In partnership with IBM, they launched StormWatch, a tropical storm monitoring platform for the 2019 Atlantic hurricane season. With huge interest from some of the world’s largest organisations, WatchKeeper began to design and develop their main platform.
With a soft launch in late 2020, WatchKeeper gained two major clients, including a Fortune 500 company. Since then WatchKeeper has signed partnerships with a number of organisations, from agencies like the US Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to companies like Mapbox. Meanwhile, at the start of this year, WatchKeeper was invited to join the UK National Cyber Security Centre’s Accelerator Programme.
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