Any small to medium sized business owner knows that there are hundreds of decisions to make each day. From operations to human resources, it’s often difficult to prioritize planning for natural or manmade disasters. However, FEMA estimates that up to sixty percent of all small businesses close permanently after a disaster. Therefore, it is essential to have a detailed plan in place in order to minimize downtime and make sure your business is not in this category.
Protect Intellectual Property
Whether you have a manufacturing facility or an office setup, you will always have vital information stored on your network. The best way to plan for a potential disruption is to partner with a competent company that will help with your networking disaster recovery planning. Most business owners aren’t IT specialists, so this is helpful to protect against cyber threats. It also stores and archives your data offsite, which means that your operations won’t be disrupted in the event of a natural disaster. You should work with them to develop a detailed contingency plan, with specific information on who to contact first and which critical business functions need restoring first.
Most companies know that they need to have basic fire drills or safety training for employees. However, they often fail to go deeper than that. Start by appointing a specific person to be in charge of the contingency plan. This person needs to make sure to have updated contact information for each employee. In the event of an emergency, information can be disseminated through a mass email and/or phone chain. This will ensure employees know when and where to report to work and who to contact if unable to do so. Keep in mind that a natural disaster, such as a flood or hurricane, also means that employee homes might be compromised. Therefore, your recovery plan may need to include running on a skeleton crew of people.
There are simple steps you can take to be prepared for unforeseen events. Any critical paperwork should be scanned and stored digitally, as well as kept in a fire and waterproof safe. If you are in a hurricane or flood zone, make sure you have flood insurance. Take advantage of the annual fire marshal visit to ask for tips on protecting critical machinery and where to locate it.
Every business should have a detailed contingency plan. You should prepare now by protecting your computer network and training employees. These steps will not only help keep your business and employees safe but also give you peace of mind.