Living in an area prone to natural disasters, like hurricanes or tornadoes, require an element of preparation far in advance of an event occurring. Waiting until a storm is on the horizon may cost you and your business time and money.
As a business owner, you should have a full disaster plan at the ready for employees to become acquainted with before needing to move into action. If you are still in the planning stages, you may want to look over these four elements you may wish to include in such a plan.
- Preserving Your Computer Network
Your computer network is your business’s lifeblood, and having any downtime with your system is the equivalent of closing your doors. Consider adding network disaster recovery planning to your business preparation. These services can back up and move all of your data to a safe area away from the impending trouble. In this way, you may still be able to operate from a remote location should your business suffer significant damage. Having a contingency plan like this in place can keep your data intact and accessible.
- Keeping Important Documents Close
Experts at Inc.com suggest keeping all sensitive documents easily accessible during a natural disaster. This allows you the chance to grab what you need should a sudden emergency occur. Some of the materials that you should take include:
- Picture identification
- Extra keys to the business
- Lease or mortgage documents
- Insurance policy
- Emergency contacts for employees
To ensure none of these items gets damaged, keep them in a watertight container or envelope.
- Keeping Inventory Current
If you live somewhere with a disaster season, keep track of inventory, equipment, and other items that may get ruined, should your business sustain damage. If you have left the area for safety reasons, you will want to know what you are supposed to have in the building when it is deemed safe to return. This way, you can file insurance claims for all missing or damaged items, but only if you have the records for what existed before the event.
- Having an Evacuation Route Planned
Finally, not all disasters are preceded by a warning. Fires, flash floods and tornadoes can come on quickly and create a path of damage in minutes. Create an evacuation route for your business, including directions to the closest storm shelter or haven. This way, your employees will also know where to go should they need to leave quickly.
There is nothing wrong with being ready for a disaster. It’s better to have a solid plan in place than to regret not taking the time to do it.