We're in the middle of a pandemic right now and if that doesn't tell you that we need to ensure that a business has an emergency plan, nothing will! Every single business needs a backup plan, as without one, it's much harder to recover if something goes wrong. No one imagines planning for an emergency; but that's the whole point. An emergency isn't predictable, it doesn't give you notice before it happens and preparing for something specific isn't the easiest thing to do in the world.
Instead, you have to plan for it all. You need to avoid planning for tornados or quakes unless you're in the areas that are affected by those things. You have to think about planning for everything going wrong, from needing back up gas oil drums in the event of a power outage, to needing a remote working plan in case all of your staff have to work away from the office when a pandemic occurs. These are things that while you can't control, you can be ready to respond at a moments' notice. So, what should be included in your business emergency plan? Let's take a look at four things below.
You can't really have a business plan without a risk assessment. Yes, you cannot be specific, but you can narrow down the things that can affect your business in a negative enough way that you should plan for them. What disasters could happen to your workplace? Are you aware of the risk of hackers and cybersecurity issues? Is there a risk of a blizzard that could mean you need extra heaters and fuel? These are things to consider in your risk assessment.
Do you have protective responses in place in your plan? Are you aware of how to respond to each of the risks facing your business? If you're not, then it's time to get those into place. Whether this is having a stockpile to see you through a cold patch, or you have an evacuation or shelter plan, you need to have these responses written down and communicated to your staff so that they know what to do. Training is so important here, as your employees must be aware of what's ahead of them in the event anything occurs. It's also vital that you have a leader to help to organize the team when things go wrong.
Point Of Contact
For every emergency, your staff need to know who is in charge of First Aid, who is going to be leading anyone out of the building in the event of a fire and who will be controlling the stabilization of any incident. If your business is aware of who the point person is in any emergency, things can run easily because everyone will know their role and where they should be in that role. You shouldn't be caught up looking for someone to help - they'll spring into action.
Prepare & Predict
Does extreme weather threaten your business? If it does, then you need to ensure that you are on top of the weather predictions at every harsh season. It's not just about whether you have the fuel to continue, but whether you need to ensure that everyone can work from home while a storm is happening.
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