Disaster Recovery Office Space

Did you know that 40% of small businesses that close for more than three days after a disaster NEVER reopen? (1)

The last thing you want to have to deal with is disaster recovery!  The worst has happened and now you need to figure out a way to keep your business going.  This is about more than just your computers and information systems.  Disaster can take many forms. Disaster Recovery is about what happens in the event of a devastating natural or unnatural disaster.

In a recent survey of more than 200 small businesses conducted by Imation, one quarter of small businesses reported that they do a "poor" job when it comes to implementing a formal disaster recovery program. In addition, 17 percent of respondents admitted to not having a formal disaster recovery plan at all.

All H#&% breaks loose

Developing a contingency plan for disaster recovery is one thing, but developing a disaster recovery plan that is effective and works is another.  It should be an ongoing, routine part of business planning and operations.

An effective Disaster Recovery Plan simply covers all the facets of business operations. This means personnel, customers, facilities, functions, assets and records. In brief, everything. Your goal is to develop a straightforward, uncomplicated approach to resuming business operations in case of a disaster. Most importantly:

Develop your Disaster Recovery Plan
as if all the key players will be absent

This means developing written procedures that support policies; using a clean, standardized format that is easy to understand and implement.

5 Tips on Preparing for Disaster Recovery

  1. Businesses the world over have been affected by disasters such as hurricanes, tornadoes, floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, volcanic eruptions and fire. Don't think you are immune!

  2. Develop your recovery plan before disaster strikes. Make sure everyone in your company is familiar with the plan and knows what steps to take in emergencies.

  3. Have adequate insurance. You’ll need coverage not only for property damage and loss (including inventory), but also for business interruption.

  4. Draw up a list of telephone numbers for all employees. Assign certain employees to call others if disaster strikes. That way, you can learn who is all right and who needs help, and you can quickly communicate instructions about your business.

  5. Don’t forget your computer system. Keep backup programs and duplicate records (accounts receivable, client information, and the like) at a different, safe site.

  6. Test your plan...

Source: SCORE "Counselors to America's Small Business."

Sample Disaster Recovery Plan (pdf)

Disaster Recovery Planning Resources

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