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Build Awareness of the Need To Plan for Disaster

Do what you can to build awareness and to bring your people up to speed in recovery planning methodologies. For example, attend classes and seminars. The Internet also offers some pretty good public-domain planning guides these days that are very affordable. For example, I downloaded a Data Security Document and Disaster Recovery Plan template for under $50 from the IT Infrastructure Library’s Survival section. It’s not the be-all and end-all, but for a small business it’s much better than nothing, and a great value for the money!

At a minimum, your disaster recovery plan must establish a meeting place where workers can assemble if a disaster renders your primary business location unusable. This backup location might be another branch location, a residence, a hotel—even the CEO’s house. The key is determining the location in advance and then making sure that it has adequate telephone service, computer and fax equipment, and administrative support for coordination of the recovery process. This alternate location will be your emergency command center for recovery operations. The emergency plan for one of my clients, a bank, had everyone meeting in a parking lot. I can think of better locations, but at least they had defined a place. You should, too.

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