Crisis management


  1. All incidents must be reported to the RMIT Security Control (53333) in the first instance.
  2. Security Control will undertake initial incident triage, immediately upon receiving the report.
  3. Security Control will escalate to the Crisis Management Team (CMT) when appropriate triggers apply.

Key general triggers for escalation to the Crisis Management Team

  • A serious incident, event or issue that has occurred or is imminent which poses a serious threat to RMIT people, operations, property / assets or reputation. It may occur on-campus or off-campus, and may impact on third parties.
  • A business or financial incident reflecting on RMIT’s reputation or continuity of operations, including incidents relating to international partners, suppliers or significant contracts / projects.
  • The incident is not under control and is likely to attract public or media interest.

Minimum information needed for reporting a crisis / critical incident:

  • Date / time of incident
  • Incident description – what happened and where
  • Number of injuries / fatalities
  • Extent of any damage or loss
  • Is the incident stable or escalating
  • Have emergency services been called – which services
  • Is the incident impacting 3rd parties
  • Has there been any media / social media coverage?

Crisis management plan

A crisis management plan is in place, comprising of guidance for the Crisis Management Team; details of crisis management resources; templates and checklists; and contact details for key stakeholders which is updated on a regular basis.

Crisis management team (CMT)

The crisis management team comprises of key staff who are responsible for managing components within an incident under the leadership of the CMT Leader. Alternates have been identified in case of absence or a lengthy management process eventuates.

  • The CMT Leader is the Chief Operating Officer
  • The Public Spokesperson is the Vice-Chancellor

Other key CMT roles:

  • Communications
  • People coordinators: staff, students and international
  • ICT coordination
  • Emergency and Security liaison
  • Facilities management
  • OHS management
  • Impacted area liaison and recovery coordination

A team is also in place to support the CMT in administration and as needs arise.

Communications in times of crisis

Switchboard / call centre staff will be in place to manage calls received in relation to any crisis.

Communications will be made to staff, students, visitors and external to the University to provide guidance on what to do, where to go and what is being done to manage the situation.

No communications relating to a crisis must be given external to the University without the approval of the Vice-Chancellor.

It should be noted that counseling and personal support is always available for anyone impacted by a disaster or crisis at the University.

1 Criteria sourced from “Crisis management – what is it and how is it delivered?” a paper published by the BCI Partnership, UK – authored by Dominic Cockram, Dr Claudia Van Den Heuvel