Disasters Happen. Disaster Recovery Relief Requires a Plan
Last week, in my first post in this disaster recovery relief series, I focused on help “after the fact.” I listed government resources available to assist businesses after they have suffered physical and economic losses. It’s comforting to know that such help is available in the event of a destructive event.
But today I’d like to discuss something even more valuable for your business – a business continuity plan. It will help your business minimize damage during a disaster and return to full function as soon as possible. Clearly, a business that continues to operate throughout a disaster bounces back more quickly afterward.
Disasters Recovery Relief 2.0
Chances are the words “disaster recovery” make you think of people dealing with a flood, earthquake or other climate-related event. And those certainly create havoc; we’re still dealing with the damage from hurricanes Katrina and Sandy.
But today, additional types of disaster can impact your business. A major fire, a disease outbreak, a cyberattack or other external threat may cause great harm. Your business can do little to prevent them. But there is plenty you can do to keep your business strong while others struggle.
Disaster Recovery Relief Through a Business Continuity Plan
Our friends at techtarget.com have put together an excellent resource. It is a guide designed to help businesses establish a continuity plan, containing mechanisms and special procedures that make a difference in a disaster. They will help a small or medium-sized business cope with any threatening event. The guide highlights three specific areas that are critical to consider in developing a business continuity plan:
- Resilience – This relates to creating or revising critical functions right now to make them more fluid. It includes things like surpluse capacity, redundancy of data and other systems, and flexible staffing. This helps ensure that basic and essential services can continue without interruption. As an example, with proper planning, a simple click can reroute all data management to a safe, alternate location. The company’s operations can continue unimpeded.
- Recovery – Recovery plans help ensure that in a disaster, problems are handled efficiently. A business continuity plan prioritizes action items so that in a disaster, the most critical elements are recovered first. The plan also calls for extra resources to be inventoried and third-party assistance agreements made in advance. Alternate spaces are also reserved for critical functions in case regular facilities become unavailable.
- Contingency – Finally, it is important to design procedures that will ease disruption during a disaster. These can include a clear delegation of responsibilities throughout the organization. Every staff member knows his or her role, and to whom they report. It may also address things like quick replacement of damaged equipment and leasing new space.
How Do I Start Planning for Disaster Recovery Relief?
Techtarget’s Small Business Disaster Recovery Planning Template and Guide provides a great deal of valuable information. You can also download a business continuity plan template from a link on the page. You can use it to help gather information and make the preliminary decisions needed to develop a plan for your organization.
Another strong first step would be to ensure that your print and mail interactions with your customers and prospects continue throughout a disaster.
Contact us today to get your disaster recovery quote for print and mail. And check back on Thursday for the third and final post in this series, in which I’ll discuss how our friends at Digital Data Centers offer capabilities that can literally save your business in the event of a disaster.
Catch Up On The Entire 3 Part Series: Disaster Recovery Relief Top Priority for Trump’s Head of SBA Linda McMahon