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Recent experiences with natural and man-made disasters have heightened the awareness for emergency action plans in the U.S. Yet an Extension office can be the cornerstone of scientific and educational resources when it comes to emergency response; county educators often serve as that critical communication link for families, communities, and area businesses affected by disaster (Boteler, 2007). Business continuity planning (BCP) describes the ability of an organization, agency, or business to maintain critical functions of operation in times of uncertainty or organizational imbalance (Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council, FFIEC, 2003). The university selected an online software program, Living Disaster Recovery Planning System (LDRPS), in which all plans were created.
To ensure consistency throughout all county offices, project staff developed a curriculum to describe key terminology and processes that occur during emergency planning, including the primary reasons for implementing an emergency action plan. Management and Leadership—Manages implementation of the plan by providing leadership to staff as they complete their assigned tasks. Two critical persons per county played a key role in plan development, the Plan Owner, who was the County Director, and the Plan Manager, who was a staff member designated by the County Director. The project team developed criteria to assist county office staff in completing their Phase 1 template. During Phase 1 the project team conducted a total of 10 educational workshops for Plan Owners. Following Phase 1, a formative program evaluation was electronically administered to each Plan Owner and Manager.
Following Phase 2, a summative program evaluation was electronically administered to each Plan Owner and Manager. Training for Phase 2 was conducted for 33 counties representing 89% of the counties eligible to advance to Phase 2 planning. The short-term outcomes were evaluated using a Web-based survey completed by Plan Owners and Plan Managers at the completion of Phase 1 training, with a 50% response rate. A second evaluation was administered to all Plan Owners and Plan Managers 2 years following the initial launch of the BCP project, with a 49% response rate. Through this experience, county staff identified several needs that were not in practice prior to this planning effort. Third, the Plan Owner (county director) did not initially involve county office personnel in the BCP development process after participation in the training; they developed their office BCP document on their own as if it were an administrative function.

The outcomes of this process, beyond meeting the needs for university compliance measures, were that emergency response plans were developed and implemented in county offices. Five experts give advice and offer Cover Pages for Resume templates to bring your idea to life. Another benefit for a county office to have a Business Continuity Plan lies in the efforts to recover business functions following a localized disruption. Business continuity is particularly important for agencies involved in community emergency response.
Within this curriculum, a template was developed for each county Extension office to satisfy the university's software program. In many cases, the Plan Manager was the County Co-Director when the county had such a position. Therefore, the recovery plan was based on a uniform prioritization of business functions throughout all 88 Ohio county offices. It contained primary business functions for which each county office had responsibility in Government and Media Relations, Human Resources, Fiscal, and Customer Service Communications. This training was only available to counties that had successfully completed their Phase 1 templates. However, 41% reported completing a BCP plan took valuable time away from their programming efforts.
After 2 years of annual testing and evaluation of the 88 county BCP plans, Ohio reported 76% of their county offices completed a BCP and were in compliance with the university recommendation. First, the university-purchased software package was developed for business application and was difficult to translate to an organization like Extension.
The technology of the program was beyond what was actually needed to produce this type of planning document on the scale needed by an Extension county office.
However the development and implementation strategies are described so that others can understand the potential challenges and opportunities when considering statewide business continuity plans. The need for Business Continuity Planning was implemented in Ohio as a statewide initiative for all university departments, including county Extension offices.
Due to the fact that county Extension offices are included in many state emergency plans, it is imperative for field faculty and staff to be competent in maintaining certain functions and services during times of community distress.
Likewise, other OSUE educators and office staff had limited to no experience with emergency or disaster planning as it related to their function or their work environment.
Phase 2 developed a recovery process consisting of a business impact analysis in which recovery time objectives determined the priority for resuming various responsibilities within the county office.

Each workshop was 2 hours in length, with the first hour devoted to learning the management concepts related to business continuity planning and the second hour dedicated to hands-on work in the participant's county office LDRPS account. Plan evaluations were performed twice annually as well as upon request from the Plan Owner or Manager.
This standardization provided staff with a step-by-step recovery plan to aid the decision-making process during anticipated stressful and chaotic times associated with emergencies and disasters. Due to the turnover of county directors, the workshop began with a review of Phase 1 concepts in addition to the Phase 2 recovery of business operations.
Due to the turnover of county Extension directors, the workshop began with a review of Phase 1 concepts in addition to the Phase 2 recovery of business operations. Having a quality business continuity plan increases county Extension offices' capacity to continue business operations during an emergency or recovery quickly following a localized disruption.
As a result of this process, Ohio has developed BCP templates that can be used as a model for other Extension organizations to use according to their needs. Proactive planning to address budget shortfalls: The Rutgers Cooperative Extension Experience.
Download this business continuity plan sample it Business Continuity Plan Template collection picture with tags "" for free that are delivered in high definition, 789 x 768 pixel. This article presents Ohio's commitment to ensure emergency preparedness of its Extension county offices using business continuity plans. Figure 1 depicts the Ohio Business Continuity Planning Program in the format of the Logic Model. Within each phase there was opportunity for template development, educational workshops, plan testing, and evaluation. Once approved for advancement, the Phase 2 template was electronically attached to the eligible county plan. These plans were developed through NIFA Special Needs grants and published on the Ohio page of the Extension Disaster Education Network (EDEN) website. Having a full-time state staff position designated to this project was also important for managing questions from Plan Owners and Managers.

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