Surviving the next Joaquin with 6 business continuity tips
Business Continuity Tips that can actually save your business
With hurricane Joaquin fresh on everyone’s mind here on the east coast, we wanted to provide business continuity tips to help businesses stay open, even in light of a true disaster. Planning ahead helps to ensure the long-term health of your business as the majority of businesses that lose data will shut their doors in as few as six months. Here are the 6 business continuity tips to make sure your business—stays in business.
- Identify Possible Disasters
Think about your business—where it is located, the physical building itself and map out any likely situations. Be thorough here. Once you identify the possible crises, you can develop the appropriate back up plan to keep your business running while order is restored. For example, if you are you in an area prone to hurricanes, you should consider safeguards against flooding and loss of electricity as well as downed servers. Or, if you are located in a high-crime area, perhaps you plan for the loss of physical property.
Remember: while inconvenient (and really crappy) most physical property can be restored or rebuilt with time. However, no amount of insurance can recover a businesses’ data or intellectual property once it is lost so make sure to have multiple backups in place. This is not an area to cut costs; it is imperative to enlist the help of a professional.
- Establish the Disaster Recovery Team
Now that you have identified your crises and backup plan(s), it is time to identify key individuals that can put the plan in motion, if needed. The team should include management executives, representatives from different departments, IT experts, and any other vital staff related to your business. Also, there should be an overall leader identified for the recovery effort.
- Create a Disaster Recovery Call Tree
Keep a current list of employees and their personal contact information (including social media) and establish a hierarchy or a relay approach to get information and instructions out to people quickly. You should agree to the communication plan beforehand so there is no question during a crisis. Make sure everyone has a copy of the list.
- Declare a Remote Workplace for Recovery Efforts
In the event of an emergency, your main facility may be inaccessible; therefore alternative “mini” hubs should be established. This could be virtually anywhere from a bunker to a warehouse off-site of your main facility. Plan for transportation for key staff to and from these satellite facilities and also have these facilities outfitted with the capability to access networks and data remotely.
- Communicate with Outside Entities
The importance of establishing communications with authorities, stakeholders, board members, vendors, and international or remote employees is imperative. As a rule of thumb, be sure to include means of communication other than phones or email. Social media is quickly gaining popularity as a way to communicate when disaster strikes.
- Practice, Adapt and Adjust
A disaster recovery plan is a living, breathing thing. As your business grows and changes, be sure to adapt your working disaster recovery plan accordingly. Practice scenarios with staff on a regular basis and continue to train employees on their responsibilities during and after an emergency to keep things as smooth as possible when there is a real crisis.
As business continuity specialists in NY, who stayed operational for our clients during Sandy, we are able to provide business continuity tips to help keep you up and running in the face of disaster. Let us know if you would like to talk about business continuity planning with Invenio IT.