Businesses have learned many hard lessons this year, but maybe the biggest is the need to be prepared for anything, even something as unprecedented as a pandemic. A recent survey conducted by the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) reported 34% of employers didn’t have an emergency preparedness plan before the pandemic. For businesses, emergency preparedness planning can make the difference between staying in business and losing everything.
An emergency preparedness plan (or a business continuity plan) is a document or series of documents that outline procedures and processes to help mitigate the impact of a natural disaster or other disruptive event, such as a cyber incident, civil unrest, and even disease outbreak. A well-planned business continuity plan explains what needs to be done and who is responsible for getting a business back up and running after a disaster strikes. This is particularly important considering that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) estimates 40% of businesses that experience a natural or human-made disaster never reopen, while 25% of those that do reopen fail within a year.
Traditional business emergency preparedness plans have focused on how to respond and recover from common threats to property or personnel like fire, severe weather, or workplace violence. However, most failed to account for the types of business disruptions experienced during the pandemic like staffing shortages, travel restrictions, unavailable services, shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE), limits to the number of people who can gather in a single location and supply chain interruptions. While the actual contents of a business continuity plan depend entirely on your industry and business model, when drafting or updating your emergency preparedness plan, be sure to include these core elements:
As we continue to recover from the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s become clear that risks are constantly shifting. Make sure your emergency preparedness plans continue to shift with these risks as well.
For additional disaster preparedness, check out USI’s Natural Disaster Planning resources or contact us..
Amy assists clients with identifying and mitigating risk, resolves carrier loss prevention recommendations, develops and implements safety programs, evaluates training needs and delivers customized training solutions.
Amy assists clients with identifying and mitigating risk, resolves carrier loss prevention recommendations, develops and implements safety programs, evaluates training needs and delivers customized training solutions. She brings a practical approach that has been developed in the real world which translates into improving client safety performance. Amy’s strengths include developing safety programs compliant with OSHA and DOT regulations, conducting management and employee training, organizing and leading safety committees, enhancing safety awareness and building safety cultures and facilitating carrier loss control inspections.
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