5 effective ways to avoid business disaster
Successful businesses heavily rely on their ability to resist hardships and interference. There are many risks to consider, your business could experience anything from IT errors to internal damage caused by natural disasters. There is also a range of schemes you can put in place to help your business withstand disaster and ensure continuity.
Find out how to build business resilience with these top five tips.
Identify the risks.
Risk assessment is crucial to any business; it is best to eliminate the element of surprise and prepare for all possible circumstances. Once threats are identified, companies can devise strategies to avoid lasting damage and adapt processes to tackle any disaster.
- IT and server breakdown: Systems are at risk of viruses, malware, and hackers. Install security software to block unauthorized users from interfering.
- Power failure: Loss of IT consequently stops employees from working. Lack of lighting and electrical facilities pose a health and safety risk to all. Impose a work-from-home protocol allowing workflow to continue.
- Natural disaster: Flooding or wind damage following a storm can disrupt access to workspaces or the internet. Consider placing vital electrical equipment high up to avoid water damage.
- Fire: Serious consequences could result in the loss of workspaces. Fire extinguishers and blankets should be located throughout the workplace.
- Disease outbreak: Illness or injuries may force employees to work from home, which could potentially be disruptive to workflow. Increase access to sanitary cleaning products to reduce the spread and make sure training on workplace safety rules is up-to-date and in line with government guidelines. By doing this, employers demonstrate their concern for employee safety while minimizing the risk of workers’ compensation liability, breaches to employment law, and government-enforced actions.
Strengthen team communication.
Solid communication is a fundamental element of business.
Consider establishing a communication platform accessible to the entire team. Chanty and Slack are popular team communication sites available on phones, tablets, and computers. Business continuity will benefit from strengthened team communication as members will be prompted to take certain protocols far more efficiently.
Monitor technology effectiveness.
Digital strategist, Antoine Bechara says, “Technology is constantly evolving; backing up data can significantly prepare your business for a disaster. Digital clouds effectively maintain business continuity, allowing authorized members to access vital information from an external location. Be sure to monitor your cloud storage limits to avoid data loss.”
If your business heavily relies on IT equipment, you may consider hiring reliable IT professionals to install suitable firewalls, safeguarding software, and SIEM tools. Workplace security is equally imperative, CCTV cameras and trespasser alarms will deter thieves and assist with any insurance claims.
Strategize and test business continuity plans.
Once you’ve completed a risk assessment of your business, it’s time to strategize continuity plans:
- Identify critical areas of your business — ask yourself what service you are providing.
- Determine which areas are most vulnerable to disaster.
- Identify potential losses if specific protocols go down — begin to prioritise which services are most important.
- Keep a checklist of supplies — utilise necessary equipment for those working from home.
- Plan recovery periods for each key area of your business — provide team training on safety protocols following a disaster.
- Test, test, test. Practice makes perfect; use testing opportunities to identify flaws in your plans.
Ensure businesses can operate from home.
Many of us are no stranger to working from home; following a disaster, this could be your only option to keep your business up and running. Investing in extra equipment to help your teamwork efficiently from home is a step in the right direction.
Again, communication platforms are a great way to support your team from home. Provide them with a space to gain IT support, and access work files.
Disasters can come as a surprise, so it’s always best to prepare for the worst in advance. The key to success is ensuring your team has a safe, alternative way to carry out work. Remember to perform frequent risk assessment checks and aim to identify flaws in your recovery plans.