Critical communications and change management

Radio Frequency Users Association of New Zealand (RFUANZ)

By Corey Weir, Chairman, RFUANZ
Tuesday, 21 July, 2020

Critical communications and change management

We start this RFUANZ column with the following insights into critical communications and change management from Mike Head of Tait Communications:

Earthquakes, terrorist attacks and pandemics… and all that Cantabrians want is to watch the Crusaders play the Highlanders. Change is inevitable, so the way we manage that change becomes important to our professional and personal lives. The aforementioned events all share some common features that test the ways in which we respond and the systems that we rely upon. Those common features are:

  • They have all happened in New Zealand
  • They create sharp spikes in communication traffic
  • They require emergency service responses
  • They affect all of us to varying degrees

The large spike in load caused problems for cellular and landline voice calls as we all coordinated our pandemic response transition into Level 4. Then, once we adjusted to lockdown and working from home, we had a much greater reliance on electronic media for work, school, leisure and social engagement. This caused some problems with local traffic and the impact of a significant change in internet traffic profiles. At the same time some of our communications infrastructure had been further compromised by vandalism driven by misinformation and paranoia.

These situations tend to remind us of how our expectations of critical communications have also changed. Our tolerance to not having immediate access tends to decrease as we transition from personal to professional, and from professional to emergency services. As we rely more and more on common systems to support all of these, the impact of any interruption becomes greater. There is nothing like a crisis to remind us of what is important… that simple is effective and that it is good to have a back-up plan.

Traditional land mobile radio systems have proved time and time again to be ultra-reliable and dependable platforms for voice communications, which forms the bottom line for many business and critical communications organisations.


Workshops on how to become an approved radio engineer or certifier — which were to have been held the day prior to the Comms Connect New Zealand conference and exhibition — have been postponed. As yet we have not been advised of alternative dates. Should you have any questions or need to know more, please email RSM at

You can find the criteria for how to become an approved engineer or certifier on the RSM website at

Finally, in my last article I advised the postponement date for our annual gala dinner to be 28–29 December. This should have read 28 October 2020. As yet we have yet to confirm a venue, as numbers attending may reduce this year.

I wish to thank all our partners for continuing to support RFUANZ, especially at this time.

Corey Weir


Radio Frequency Users Association of New Zealand

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