One of the important aspects in managing your own business is coming up with a disaster recovery plan. While many business owners put most of their time, money, and effort in making their business grow, many are also unprepared when it comes to dealing with natural and man-made disasters that could set them back or force them to close their business. With proper disaster recovery planning, you can avoid having to shut down your business and recover more quickly in case these kinds of disaster occur. Here’s a quick guideline on how you can make an effective one for your own small business:

Back up all your data

There are lots of small businesses that already go to the Cloud as their primary solution in backing up their important data. It stores everything in one centralized location and it can be accessed anywhere, using any mobile device that has Internet connection. Another advantage of using the Cloud is that it lets you automatically update your files as you work.

Another example is the Dropbox, which enables you to manage your business from a remote location in case a disaster strikes your business.

Most companies nowadays prefer to have added security of an off-site backup system, such as a facility where you can store your actual hard drives. You can optimize the security of your business data if you back it up in several different ways. If you cannot avoid keeping paper files in the meantime, make sure to store your duplicate records somewhere safe and off-premises like a safe deposit box. Make it a habit to update those records on a regular basis.

Develop a strategy for communication

It is recommended to make a list of contacts who can assist you after a disaster, such as local state agencies for emergency management, customers and clients, vendors, suppliers, and contractors. Also include insurance claim representatives, loan companies, and financial institutions. Plan to post notices in local newspapers, at your premises, and on your website.

Keep your clients well-informed and keep in touch with them by phone and/or email. This way, it will somehow prevent you from losing your valuable customers in case a disaster happens. It is also a must to communicate with your suppliers and coordinate with them on what to do in case they are unable to deliver the needed goods or services in order to keep your business operational. And finally, get in touch with another trusted business and determine a reciprocal agreement for disaster recovery, so that you’ll both have access to alternate facilities, supplies, and equipment in case of emergency.

Check your insurance plan

Determine if you have enough coverage to pay for damages, covering both physical damage and indirect costs. An example of an indirect cost is the interruption of your business caused by a disaster. Basic insurance normally includes building coverage, personal property loss, location property loss, and some additional expenses.

Most insurance policies do not cover damage caused by specific natural disasters such as earthquakes and floods, so make sure you read the details carefully before you commit. Your agent can also do a damage assessment to evaluate or estimate how much the damages cost and how much will be covered by the insurance at the same time. They will also help you to determine the replacement costs of certain aspects of your business, figure out how much you will need to reinvest or re-establish your business, and determine if you are qualified for any tax relief.

If you have a solid disaster recovery plan at the early part, or better at the start of your business, you can easily recover and rebuild your business after a major catastrophe. Just make sure to keep your recovery plan updated and provide your employees an outline of it so that they can help you act quickly when the need arises. This way, you can be assured that your small business will survive and re-grow in the soonest time.

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This entry was posted by Staff Writer on Friday, March 20, 2015 at 3:02:37 AM and is filed under Small-Medium Business.

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