In order for companies to have quick business resumption after an emergency – either natural disaster or otherwise – it's crucial to conduct a comprehensive risk analysis. That way, a thorough business continuity plan can be created, with all employees understanding what needs to be done before, during and after the emergency.
As this blog has previously discussed, tabletop exercises are especially beneficial. Individuals will know how to quickly move to a safe location, possibly a hot site, and what must be done to keep themselves and others out of harm's way. Essentially, after an emergency has already occurred – even a data breach – is not the best time to prepare an organization.
According to a Property Casualty 360 article, too many companies review insurance policies and continuity plans without taking a thorough analysis of the business and its actual needs and daily operations. It's crucial for decision-makers to take the time to see what could affect the company and what preparations need to be done.
For example, Reuters reported that Hurricane Sandy is the second-costliest catastrophe in U.S. history, with insured loss estimates as high as $25 billion. The costliest catastrophe was hurricane Katrina in 2005.
Businesses need to take into account their location when creating a business continuity plan. Weather-related emergencies could either knock out power and prevent normal operations, or could result in dangerous roads, which would prevent employees from coming into the office.
While insurance is important for companies of all sizes to have, partnering with a firm that specializes in business continuity and disaster recovery planning is also crucial, as it will ensure that the day-to-day operations can continue as normally as possible. Additionally, this will guarantee that all employees are properly educated and will know what to do in the event of anything from a data breach to a natural disaster.