How can a business prepare for a natural disaster? This is often a question that is never thought about until it is already too late.
During any natural disaster, businesses are affected and sometimes, long after the actual event has ended.
It doesn’t matter whether preparing for a hurricane, wild fire, tornado, earthquake, or something else completely. You must make the correct steps today to prepare your business for tomorrow.
It would be impossible to be 100 percent prepared for every single disaster that may happen but there are things that every business should understand that will allow them to react fast and effectively after a disaster of any type.
We are going to take a look at what your company should do to better prepare for the unexpected.
Perform a Risk Assessment
The very first thing that any business needs to do is to identify the assets you need to protect and then determine the threats and hazards that could impact those assets by means of a risk assessment. Your location may be the biggest factor when it comes to what disasters are likely as some are specific to geography.
Create Your Plans
Everybody within the company needs to know what their roles are following a natural disaster. Your response plan should not just be discussed but also written down. This should also include evacuation routes and emergency contact numbers. Make copies of the plan and place it in areas that are frequently used by employees.
If the business premises need to close, have a plan for continuing to operate remotely. If their are employees that are able to work from home, they should do so. As with any plan, review and reinforce often with regular drills and preparedness meetings.
You are also going to need a communications plan that clearly outlines how you will communicate with your customers throughout the emergency. You have worked hard to gain loyal customers, don’t lose them now. Along with the customers, employees will also need to know how they are to contact each other during these times.
Check Your Insurance
This is where you need to be extra careful and be sure to contact your insurance provider if you are unsure about anything in your policy. It also isn’t just the business premises that can be covered. You can usually extend your coverage with extra packages such as business interruption and loss of use.
As your business grows, so should your insurance. Review it at the same time as reviewing your plans to make sure that you have enough coverage.
Protect Your Data
As we are now in 2019, there is a very good chance that you store quite a lot of information electronically in one way or another. This information needs to be kept safe by backing it up to a cloud-based platform. Make it a priority to make regular backups of all important files. Even if not using a cloud-based platform, you could save the files to an external hard drive but keep it off-site.