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Build It Up Before It Gets Knocked Down! Preparing Your Business For Disaster

Naturally, with any sort of disaster, there is going to be downtime, but as a business needs to get back on its feet right away, this is what a backup plan is for, as well as ensuring that your business is prepared for whatever is thrown at it.

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Every business requires the right investments to ensure that it will progress in the right direction. A lot of the investments we need to make will relate to the long-term benefits. But we can suffer from a tendency to be short-sighted. We only look at the immediate problems right in front of us. And when we look to the long-term, it's not just about the welfare of your employees, or even the product longevity, but it's about preparing your business for various disasters. Preparation is key to anything. And in the modern world, where there are more natural disasters, coupled with climate change concerns, your business could very well fall foul of numerous issues, not to mention problems like data breaches, and various cybersecurity issues. So what can you do to ensure that you prepare your business for disaster adequately?

Look At The Structural Issues

Assessing the quality of your building is crucial especially if it's somewhere you've purchased. If you rent an office, the responsibility is down to the owners, but you still have to ensure that the protection is in place regardless. If you live in an area prone to earthquakes, you may want to consider earthquake and seismic retrofitting. On the other hand, if you live in an area prone to floods, looking at your building and seeing if it's flood-proof is essential. When you look at the physical issues, this is when you can find major errors. Structurally speaking, this is the foundation of your company, so make sure that it is sound.

Adequate Insurance Coverage

One of the most frustrating aspects of running any business is the various costs associated with protecting it. An insurance policy is obvious, but you need to look at the factors associated with the area you are doing business in. An area prone to flooding means that you require flood insurance. Many people have a shock to the system if a disaster has struck, but what adds insult to injury is if they have the wrong insurance. Understanding what your policy does and does not cover is crucial, as a lot of us do not bother to conduct an assessment of the fine print. Adequate insurance coverage is your responsibility. You have to remember that numerous policies don't cover flood damage, and when we look at the appropriate coverage for our business, sometimes we just go for the cheapest option. It's far better to protect your business with the appropriate coverage rather than having to retrospectively alter it, adding an additional expense.

Necessary Training

Protecting your business is partly to do with the structural assessments, but it's also to do with due diligence and common sense. Providing necessary training for your employees means having them undertake relevant courses so they know what to do in an emergency, but it's also about ensuring you comply with the regulatory processes should disaster strike. One of the best tools you can equip your employees with is due diligence. In the age of data breaches and cybersecurity threats, having an employee know the signs of a data breach before it strikes means that you can help to minimize the damage. Undertake common sense approaches but also ensure that your employees are armed with the necessary tools means they will be able to stop something before it gets worse. Damage control is always an appropriate mindset. In addition, disaster communication strategies need to be updated. While this may take the form of a document, your employees still need to know what to do in times of crisis and how to communicate the best way to navigate employees out of a disastrous situation.

Practicing Plan B

A backup plan needs to be in place for every eventuality. If there is freak weather, having a backup generator on site is essential, but so is the knowledge of how to use it. Plan B in every eventuality is peace of mind, but if there is nobody on site that knows how to use it, it is a useless plan. Much like the common fire alarm tests and practice evacuations, you also need to attempt drills of the big disasters. Practicing Plan B has everybody on the same page, but also helps with regard to an alternative location for the business, fire escape practices, as well as a meeting point.

Keeping The Business Going During An Emergency

Many companies will falter the first sign of an attack, be it natural, cyber or anything else. Keeping the business operating during an emergency requires different procedures. Having a business continuity plan in place gives you the opportunity to fine-tune this as your business increases in stature. But you also need to see what happens if there's a problem with regards to the supply chain, clients, as well as the customers. Keeping a business going during an emergency is partly to do with the communication strategy but it's also important to remember that the business needs some time to get back on its feet. Plan B should help to keep the business going sufficiently, but there may be some downtime involved as a result. It is natural that you don't want the business to stop dead in its tracks.

Keeping a business going during an emergency is about adequate preparation. Ultimately we want to have every eventuality covered, but we have to keep it simple. When a business is going through any sort of change, there can be issues with regards to communication. A lack of communication can cause problems with the business throughout these issues. But when there's something like a natural disaster, where the focus doesn't stay on the business, but the welfare of your employees, ensuring that there is a comprehensive plan in place means that the business can weather the storms.

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