Things don’t always go according to plan. There will be unexpected challenges and disasters that we will have to face. The same goes in running your own business — risks and disasters are bound to happen. These can cost you a lot of time, money, and effort. However, you can mitigate the effects of disasters or unforeseen circumstances when you learn to prepare a business continuity plan.
A business continuity plan ensures that your business will keep running in case that there is a major disruption. It is an outline of procedures and instructions that businesses must follow when disaster strikes.
Here are a few tips on how you can prepare your own business continuity plan:
1. Identify possible risks and disasters
List down all the risks and disasters that you and your business might possibly face. This could include preparing for natural disasters or emergencies. In listing these down, determine how much it will cost you, how much time it will take, and how much damage there will be.
2. Prepare your emergency contacts
When disaster happens, you don’t want to be running around in a panic. Have emergency contact numbers ready on your phones, and even have a list of it posted at your worksite. You should also plan alternate modes of communicating in the scenario that your main way of communication also gets disrupted.
3. Shift into digital.
If your records and documents are only in hard copy, you should back them up on the Internet using cloud drives. Hard copies are highly vulnerable to natural disasters, and if they are your only copies, it would be troublesome to recover them. Uploading them on cloud storage will give you peace of mind.
4. Have insurance
Insurance is a must in life and in business. Disasters will cause damage to your businesses, and insurance can cover some of these, such as property damage. If you don’t have insurance, you will have to pay from your own wallet, which can wipe out your savings.
5. Prepare a temporary worksite or work set-up
Your business’ location might be unavailable when disaster happens. Planning a temporary worksite or set-up will guarantee that your business operations will continue even in the middle of a disaster.
6. Test your plan
Once you have your business continuity plan, you should test it. Testing it will help you see what works and what doesn’t, and how you can further improve your plan. Spot any weaknesses and revise the plan. Schedule these tests regularly, and constantly adapt it to fit the changes that are happening in the world.
Preparation is better than cure. One takeaway we can fully embrace during this pandemic is to be prepared and get ready with disruptions. We will never know when the next pandemic will occur, but one thing for sure: we can keep ourselves ready or mitigate the risk of its impact to our business.