Hurricane Sandy left thousands of unprepared business owners in the Northeast without power, phone service, the Internet and access to bank accounts and other necessities.
Careful planning can help you minimize losses and emerge relatively unscathed from a disaster.
AppLaunch’s emergency plan includes an agreement with Regus, a provider of flexible workplaces, to get access to a backup site.
While the impact of natural disasters only accounts for 5 percent of blows to SMBs- they can be far more damaging than other common contributors, such as hardware failure, human error, and software corruption.
Without efficient and reliable communications systems in place, businesses risk having a significant downturn in productivity until power is restored.
Gain management buy-in for your plan by quantifying the cost of downtime and walking key decision makers through specific scenarios.
The other part of reducing the impact from a natural disaster is utilizing technology to help avoid mass productivity losses. When you register to view the webcast, you’ll also get access to our free ebook that contains additional tips for emergency preparedness.
Read about the legal issues related to planning for disasters and what happens after one strikes. This entry was posted in Data Archiving, Data Security and tagged Disaster data management, Disaster data security .
From the unexpected absence of a key staff member to a natural disaster, threats to your ability to maintain your business can come from anywhere at any time. For many larger businesses, emergency and disaster recovery planning is a widely accepted and understood requirement.
The goals of a business continuity plan should be to maintain maximum possible service levels during any event, and ensure that business critical departments recover from interruptions as quickly as possible.
Continuity plans must be regularly tested, as unforeseen emergency situations can arise at any time.
Without adequate consideration of the risks that an organization faces, it is impossible to draw up any sort of plan to minimize their impact.
Disaster recovery and business continuity planning should be viewed as an insurance policy. This information will be used to develop recovery strategies.Recovery StrategiesIf a facility is damaged, production machinery breaks down, a supplier fails to deliver or information technology is disrupted, business is impacted and the financial losses can begin to grow. Staff with in-depth knowledge of business functions and processes are in the best position to determine what will work. Here are seven steps that can help you develop an emergency plan and ensure that your business is as prepared as possible for the next calamity. After hurricanes Katrina and Rita, for example, 60 percent of Mississippi’s small businesses closed, according to the director of the Mississippi Small Business Development Center.
One key part to minimizing potential losses that come with any weather-related event (anticipated or not) is having an adequate business continuity plan. Our thoughts go out to our customers, distributors, and friends in Mexico who will be affected by this hurricane- and to those who have put their sweat and tears into building their businesses only to have them impacted or even destroyed by natural disasters such as this.


Disasters can happen anywhere, and with data multiplying by the day, businesses increasingly rely heavily on email, instant messages, social media, and other electronically generated information. Disaster recovery planning and the process of getting the business back up and running is crucial. Particularly for smaller businesses, it may not be possible to transfer production or sales to a different location, or provide the other facilities that would help to prevent a risk from impacting on the business. Having a system that accommodates both day-to-day group communications as well as emergency messaging and can reach people via voice messages, SMS texts, emails or even social media sites can change the game: from not prepared in emergency situations, to business running as normal even in the event of factors that would normally threaten business continuity. To read the third article in this series, go to Emergency Preparedness Planning 3: Continuity Planning. The continuity plan must include communication with stakeholders for all such emergencies, even when the risk to the business has been avoided. Recovery strategies are alternate means to restore business operations to a minimum acceptable level following a business disruption and are prioritized by the recovery time objectives (RTO) developed during the business impact analysis.Recovery strategies require resources including people, facilities, equipment, materials and information technology. Equipping converted space with furnishings, equipment, power, connectivity and other resources would be required to meet the needs of workers.Partnership or reciprocal agreements can be arranged with other businesses or organizations that can support each other in the event of a disaster.
Individuals and businesses of all sizes are frantically preparing for the storm, which grew overnight from a tropical storm to a category-5 hurricane. A study by Touch Ross indicates that less than 10 percent of companies without a disaster recovery plan are able to survive in the event of a catastrophe.
If reading these questions led to more questions than answers, your business is in need of a business continuity and disaster recovery plan. Begin your Emergency Preparedness Planning now with a free online demonstration of Regroup’s powerful, secure and easy-to-use group messaging and emergency notification system today or for more information, talk to a Regroup Communications Consultant at 775-476-8710. Regardless of the company’s perceptions, to ensure continuous data protection, businesses need to stop thinking of disaster recovery as an expense but rather a lifeline.
A disaster recovery plan is a company’s ‘insurance policy’ that ensures business continuity. Periodic review of the agreement is needed to determine if there is a change in the ability of each party to support the other.There are many vendors that support business continuity and information technology recovery strategies. For retailers and other businesses that often have customers on site, consider installing intercoms to issue instructions to staff and customers at the same time. Having this plan in place not only minimizes financial loss, but can also give your business an advantage over unprepared competitors.
Business Continuity Planning Process Diagram - Text VersionWhen business is disrupted, it can cost money. Even when this is the case, the continuity plan must still address them, an earthquake proof building is of no benefit unless staff are instructed to congregate in it and other safe areas. Therefore, recovery strategies for information technology should be developed so technology can be restored in time to meet the needs of the business. External suppliers can provide a full business environment including office space and live data centers ready to be occupied. I wonder if businesses that choose not to consider disaster recovery do so because they think it will not happen to them.


To read the 4th article, go to Emergency Preparedness Planning 4: Disaster prevention and avoidance.
The worksheet should be completed by business function and process managers with sufficient knowledge of the business.
The availability and cost of these options can be affected when a regional disaster results in competition for these resources.There are multiple strategies for recovery of manufacturing operations. Smaller businesses, for whom the impacts of any event could be significantly greater, can often overlook the necessity for disaster recovery planning.
Once all worksheets are completed, the worksheets can be tabulated to summarize:the operational and financial impacts resulting from the loss of individual business functions and processthe point in time when loss of a function or process would result in the identified business impactsThose functions or processes with the highest potential operational and financial impacts become priorities for restoration. Emergency planning and disaster recovery is not simply about preparing for a terrorist attack or earthquake, being prepared for a power outage or unexpected staff absence or incident can equally help in ensuring business continuity.
The Business Continuity Resource Requirements worksheet should be completed by business function and process managers.
Once you know what your risks are, what their impact might be and the likelihood of them arising, you can begin planning how to avoid or mitigate them. Completed worksheets are used to determine the resource requirements for recovery strategies.Following an incident that disrupts business operations, resources will be needed to carry out recovery strategies and to restore normal business operations. This is where the continuity plan really comes into its own, in providing detailed instructions on mitigating the effects of risks and minimizing disruption. Meetings with individual managers should be held to clarify information and obtain missing information.After all worksheets have been completed and validated, the priorities for restoration of business processes should be identified. This is why the continuity plan needs to be a living document that takes account of feedback from tests and genuine emergencies. Again, this should be an ongoing procedure with post-incident reviews feeding into improving the continuity plan.
From brainstorming threat scenarios to notifying customers about service changes, having a robust and reliable mass communication system is the critical to your plan’s success.
To read the second article in this series, go to Emergency Preparedness Planning 2: Risk Assessment.
We are seeing more and more extreme weather and more than ever businesses need a solid business disaster recovery plan.
Disasters are often out of our control, but you can be prepared with a backup and disaster recovery plan. However, recent technological and information advances mean that no business, large or small, has an excuse not to be prepared.



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