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No one ever expects a natural disaster to come and wipe out a business entirely. That being said however, oftentimes it is this false sense of security that ends up ruining businesses that do not have a disaster plan in place. It is important for all businesses, no matter the size, no matter the location, and no matter the value to have some sort of a continuity plan in place at all times.
The Red Cross reports that up to 40 percent of small businesses are ruined in the wake of natural disasters and a continuity plan may be just what you need to help get your business back up and running despite the issues that are stacked against you. It is crucial that every company take the time to create and implement their own disaster and continuity plan before the worst happens.
To start, it is important that you take the time to make an assessment of what it would take to continue your business and business functions in the case of a natural disaster. What items would your employees need to keep up communications, what space would you need, what data would need to be protected, etc.. These are all considerations that are going to help with the framing and implementation of your own personalized disaster plan.
The next step is to actually formulate your plan. You should take the time to think about what daily functions are most important in your business. If you run a communications business where you talk to customers over the phone for example, you would need some means of communication with your customers to remain in business. You should take the time to evaluate what is the most essential in the running of your business in order to determine what you should do in the case of an emergency.
For most companies, communication is going to be the most important part of their business and it is also likely to be the facet that is most affected in the case of a natural disaster. You should make sure that you have some sort of a communications strategy in place so that you can continue to communicate with employees and customers alike.
A major part of any disaster recovery is the recovery and implementation of the information you had prior to the event. This means that backing up data off site in a data storage facility or in the cloud for example can be a saving grace for any size business. Those businesses that lose all their data are far more at risk of shutting down than those that simply lose physical items like storefronts and inventory.
Backing up data is not only essential for those that want to recover following a disaster, but also for those that want to safeguard information in case of an attack from hackers or from malware. It is important that you take the time to protect your information and that you back up your data frequently so that business can be resumed as usual as quickly as possible.
The last step of any plan is to make sure that your employees are informed and that they know what to do in the case of an emergency. Having a well prepared staff can make all the difference between getting things back up and running and not being able to complete a recovery project after a natural disaster or any other type of disaster for that matter. Backing up things like phone numbers, email addresses, and more can truly make a hug difference in the overall success of any recovery.