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The worst nuclear disaster in U.S. history began with a relatively harmless malfunction — the failure of a secondary cooling circuit.

Such issues weren’t uncommon at the Three Mile Island Nuclear Generating Plant. The failed circuit wasn’t enough to do significant damage alone. It was only when a pressure-relief valve failed to close that conditions started spiraling out of control, as water meant to help cool the reactor began escaping out the open valve.

Workers in the control room knew the reactor was overheating. They just weren’t sure why. The room’s horseshoe-shaped control panel stretched 40 feet long and featured 1,200 different warning lights. Amidst the chaos, indicators designed to help workers pinpoint the issue proved too ambiguous.

Unclear info led to bad decisions — like the choice to manually shut off the emergency cooling system. It took workers 16 hours to properly respond to the situation. By that point, most of the reactor’s nuclear core had melted due to extreme heat, releasing radioactive material into the atmosphere and contaminating water that now flowed throughout the plant.

Luckily, no deaths were caused by the disaster at Three Mile Island. Yet the clean-up effort took over a decade and cost an estimated $1 billion. The problem on that fateful day was not a lack of information, but rather a poorly-organized system that failed to explicitly highlight crucial indicators.

Your business may not be quite as complicated as a nuclear power plant. Odds are, its success also relies on multiple intricate parts working in unison. Modern business intelligence and data visualization tools allow you to track a near-infinite number of metrics. Yet sorting through that information to identify the insights that warrant immediate action remains a challenge. That’s exactly why we embedded push technology inside iDashboards.

At iDashboards, we equip leaders and organizations with the info needed to make better decisions. Our Operational Success Platform unifies all your existing applications under a single umbrella and delivers real-time insight via flexible data visualizations. While we pride ourselves on providing dashboards and reports that instantly communicate value, we also know leaders can’t possibly monitor this information 24/7.

What is Push Technology?

Push Technology creates automated, real-time alerts and notifications that are sent directly to your email inbox. These alerts are based on custom rules you create and triggered via iDashboards’ real-time data tracking. The COO of a carpet manufacturing business may want to know when throughput drops below a certain threshold, while a B2B sales executive may want to ensure activity per rep exceeds a specific benchmark. With iDashboards’ push technology, you can receive a customized alert for these metrics straight to your inbox. No monitoring, deciphering, or analysis required.

The power of iDashboards’ push technology is augmented by our ability to deliver real-time operational business intelligence. A notification alerting you to something that occurred several days ago isn’t nearly as impactful as one alerting you to something happening now. This technology empowers leaders to get out in front of issues and better identify impactful coaching opportunities.

While iDashboards’ push notifications are only limited by your imagination, we recommend leaders carefully consider how they leverage these high-priority alerts. Research from Flock & Compt found C-level executives and VPs receive 2.6 and 2.2 times as many work-related messages as non-managers, respectively.

During the disaster at Three Mile Island, workers in the control room were subjected to hundreds of alarms going off simultaneously. The U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission later wrote the scenario presented “a perceptual overload in terms of detecting critical alarms”. An inbox resembling that control room will bog down even the most ambitious executive. A small handful of alerts quickly received and aggressively acted upon are more valuable than a high volume of alerts that go largely ignored.

These notifications are tremendously useful for extinguishing routine fires before they can grow to all-encompassing infernos. However, their applications extend far beyond managing downside. Push technology can also help you build a more recognition-rich culture.

In a global survey by McKinsey and Company, respondents rated both “praise and commendation from (an) immediate manager” and “attention from leaders” as more effective motivators than performance-based cash bonuses. When organizations lose talent, lack of recognition is often the culprit— a survey by Achievers found that among employees looking to change jobs, lack of recognition and engagement ranked as their number one cause.

Imagine being instantly notified when a department achieves an impressive number of sales, trucks unloaded, or customer complaints resolved in a day. Such alerts present a prime opportunity to recognize excellence, praise those responsible, and investigate to see if relevant practices could be applied more broadly.

iDashboards’ push technology also helps leaders avoid perhaps the most demotivating leadership style — micromanagement. Leaders who constantly hassle team members for updates often come across as overbearing. While there’s nothing wrong with the occasional check-in, push notifications can help you better target your touch-points and leverage a more strategic approach.

This is especially valuable given the growing physical disparity of the average business. The rise of remote work, the increasing prominence of multi-unit franchises, and the steady march of globalization have forced executives to adapt new tools to be successful. Push technology can help you gain visibility into even the most distant corners of your operation.

These features aren’t limited to senior-level executives — iDashboards allows users at every level of an organization to receive custom alerts. Paired with a clear vision and a disciplined approach, this can serve as a powerful driver of alignment.

iDashboards is an Operational Success Platform that helps you make better decisions in real time.

Our umbrella platform eliminates data silos and connects disparate applications. Custom visualizations simplify your data and deliver insights every stakeholder can understand. Push technology alerts you of critical events and empowers you to better allocate your most precious resource — time.

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Joe Bucci Marketing Manager @ iDashboards

Joe joined the team at iDashboards in 2021 and leads the marketing efforts for all industries and operating divisions. Joe loves building systems that help people make better decisions, so he fit in perfectly from the very beginning. When he's not helping executives pursue operational excellence, you can find him working on his truck, camping, or reading about neuroscience.

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