Most ordinary insurance policies do not cover against earthquake damage. More
IT Business Continuity - Business Continuity Plans
Crises or emergency events that could affect the running of your organisation:
- Theft and vandalism – especially of key equipment such as computers and sensitive data files
- Loss of key staff or serious illnesses
- Fuel Shortages – This could impact employees getting to and from work or customer deliveries.
- Natural disasters – Flooding, earthquakes, hurricanes, severe storms
- Power Cuts
- IT System Failure
- Terrorist Attack – This threat may be low but the damage done could be devastating if it were to occur.
- Infectious disease outbreak
Assess the possible impact of risks on your business
It is crucial to analyse the probability of an emergency event or crisis occurring that could affect your business, and the frequency that the event could occur. This will aid you in determining the possible impact on your business. Identifying key business functions that are critical during a crisis’s event and essential to your organisation is vital.
- Assess the likelihood of a crisis or risk occurring
- Assess the potential impact of a risk or crisis to your business
- Minimise the potential risks of an emergency event or crisis – this will include ensuring your business premises are protected against theft or fire and that adequate alarms and safeguards are in place.
- Allocate roles to individuals in an emergency so that nothing is overlooked
Ensure vital equipment and machinery is protected and insured. IT and Communications equipment are vital to the running of most businesses and an IT Business Continuity plan is essential. You can help protect your business by backing up crucial data and installing anti-virus software. An offsite secure server is also highly recommended to protect your IT systems.
Have key members of staff train other individuals and brief them on vital business operational tasks so that you are not only dependent on them in the event of an emergency situation. You could also consider keeping essential materials and supplies stock pilled in case deliveries cannot be made for a period of time.
- Have a transport plan in place in the event that employees are unable to get to work by their usual means.
- Ensure you have adequate insurance in place to cover you in the event of an emergency or crisis, this includes employee insurance, asset insurance and business premises insurance.
- Enable employees to fulfil their allocated responsibilities in a crisis situation by giving them specific training.
- Have a list of emergency contact details available so that you can notify the relevant departments as quickly as possible. This will include emergency services, customers, government departments, insurers and suppliers.
Ensure that you have an alternative business premises plan in case your normal place of business becomes unsafe or inaccessible for any significant length of time. Avoid costly downtime by making preparations now to allow employees to work from home (and ensure they have what they will need in terms of equipment), arrange with a partner firm to share space if either of your premises become unusable, or look into temporary office space on easy-in, easy-out terms. Offices.net provides comprehensive list of office buildings offering this type of short term business accommodation in locations throughout the US.
It is essential to test your business continuity plan on a regular basis to assess how you and your company will be able to perform during a crisis event. Ensure each employee is aware of their role and responsibilities during an emergency and prioritise actions that will need to be taken to allow business continuity.
Keep your business continuity plan updated and relevant, as your business or circumstances change. By ensuring you have a comprehensive plan in place you will minimise the risks to your business during an emergency situation or event.