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What Is an Emergency Manager and How to Become One

Emergency Manager

What Does an Emergency Manager Do?

An emergency manager organizes disaster response training to prepare citizens and government personnel for a crisis. As an emergency manager, you may serve as an advisor to the local government, or you may have the authority to make decisions regarding crisis management in the event of a disaster. In between crises, your job duties include raising community awareness about preparing for and responding to emergencies, developing professional relationships with media and communications outlets, and collaborating with emergency response personnel to coordinate crisis management strategies.

How to Get a Job as an Emergency Manager

To get hired as an emergency manager, you need a bachelor’s degree in crisis management, homeland security, or a related field. You need an understanding of disaster response, recovery, politics, and government programs and policies around crisis response and disaster response training. You need strong communication skills and technical abilities to conduct research and coordinate plans online. You need at least three years of relevant experience to qualify for an emergency manager role, such as law enforcement, firefighting, or emergency medical response.

What Is an Emergency Management Specialist?

An emergency management specialist works with municipalities and government agencies to create crisis management plans and to implement disaster response strategies in the event of a natural disaster or one caused by humans. As an emergency response specialist, your job is to review emergency response plans and provide feedback for improvement, coordinate with government and social institutions to meet citizen’s needs during a crisis, apply for grant funding for disaster response efforts, manage crisis management funds, and coordinate with local law enforcement.

How Does an Emergency Manger Create an Emergency Plan?

As an emergency manager, you create an emergency plan by first conducting a risk assessment to identify possible scenarios in the event of a crisis. You then start building the emergency plan using the four phases of emergency management as a template. First, consider mitigation—what steps you can take to prevent disasters or to minimize their negative impact. Second, think about preparedness—what is necessary to protect citizens and emergency personnel as well as how to provide first aid and other resources. Outline the actions everyone should take during the response and recovery phases of a disaster to keep people safer.

Emergency Manager Job Description Sample

With this Emergency Manager job description sample, you can get a good idea of what employers are looking for when hiring for this position. Remember, every employer is different and each will have unique qualifications when they hire for a Emergency Manager role.

Job Summary

We are seeking an Emergency Manager to help us prepare for and respond to disasters. In this role, your main priority is to help us develop protocols for dealing with emergencies, whether they be natural or manmade disasters. When a disaster strikes, you will be in charge of organizing our resources and delegating tasks to our various departments. Our ideal applicant has a bachelor's degree in crisis management and several years of experience in the field. You also need to have strong organizational and leadership skills.

Duties and Responsibilities

  • Develop new protocols for crisis management
  • Assign duties for each department
  • Lead departments when disaster strikes
  • Designate leaders within each department
  • Delegate new duties as the crisis unfolds

Requirements and Qualifications

  • Bachelor's degree in crisis management
  • Several years of experience in the field
  • Strong organizational, leadership, and communication skills
  • Ability to thrive under pressure