Deficiencies in modern industrial plant alarm systems contribute to multiple fatalities and environmental problems every year, as well as millions of dollars of product loss. Current alarm system management techniques focus on individual alarms within the system and do not take real-time context into account during alarm prioritisation. This can result in suboptimal decision-making by operators, which in turn can lead to alarm floods, trips and safety incidents. Researchers at The University of Queensland (UQ) have developed a novel, qualitative approach to analysis of alarms at each stage of the alarm system lifecycle. The approach reveals deficiencies at design time and provides the operator with a new range of tools during plant operation.