Are you ready for a flood-based business interruption?
Developing a continuity plan can help keep your business operational in the wake of a disaster, such as a flood.
Your plan should outline key contacts, protocols and alternative business solutions should your property be flooded or forced to temporarily close due to evacuation orders, or if you face staffing shortages because employees are dealing with flood issues at their personal properties.
The best time to create your business continuity plan is in advance of a crisis; so, start now as flood season in Alberta is quickly approaching.
This checklist can help you start drafting your plan:
Keep your employees safe
Protecting employees should be your number one business priority—especially during natural disasters, such as floods. Keep staff safe by planning these steps:
- Identify evacuation routes, off-site meeting locations and determine a protocol for safe evacuation.
- Identify possible exposures and health risks to your employees.
- Develop or review current policies regarding remote work, paid or unpaid sick or personal time.
- Prepare and plan for operations with a reduced workforce.
- Plan for downsizing services but also anticipate any scenario which may require a surge in services.
- Identify a team to serve as a communication resource so that employees have access to accurate information throughout the crisis.
- Work with employees and their union(s) to address leave, pay, transportation, childcare, absence and other human resource issues.
- Assist employees in managing additional stressors (i.e. Employee Assistance Program – EAP).
Maintain business operations
Minimize business interruptions by identifying and finding solutions for the areas of your business that face the most risk should a disaster strike.
- Conduct a thorough risk assessment to identify critical processes and functions that would be impacted during a business disruption.
- Identify essential employees to deliver critical processes and functions.
- Determine the agility of the workforce and what resources may be needed during a disruption.
- Define internal and external stakeholders for conveying communication.
- Develop strategies and vetted holding statements to communicate with employees, customers, consumers and the media.
- Review supplier service level agreements to consequences for not abiding by contracts.
- Review supplier business continuity plans to determine whether they align with your business expectations.
- Define the capabilities of the upstream supply chain to determine their capability to provide your business what it needs during a disruption.
- Consider increasing inventory to extend operations if the upstream supplier is not capable of delivering needed goods.
- Define the capabilities of the downstream supply chain to assess impact to your customers if operations are no longer feasible at normal capacity.
- Communicate business decisions to appropriate audiences.
- Train response team members on responsibilities during a disruption.
- Test your business continuity plan by conducting tabletop exercises.
Protect your property and inventory
By acting now to reduce water damage caused by flooding, you can minimize financial damages caused by property and inventory losses.
Discover the steps you can take by reading our article: Protect your business from flooding.