Hurricane season is at its peak, but extreme weather conditions can strike any time of the year so it’s important to be prepared. Before a hurricane or other severe weather impacts your area, we encourage all Affiliates to take the time to create a plan to prepare for and cope with any extreme weather that might come your way. Here are three easy steps you can take to help prepare for an extreme weather event
Verify All Employee Contact Information
Accurate contact information is one of the most important components of any business operation. It is even more critical in the event of an emergency. Knowing how to reach all your employees and vendors is vital to helping your Affiliate quickly bounce back from a disaster.
Send a memo to your employees and vendors asking them to update their contact information. In the event of severe weather, up-to-date contact information will ensure you can check in on employees’ wellbeing and quickly communicate the next steps for resuming all Affiliate activities.
Update Critical Business Functions
Take the time to prioritize key business functions required for your Affiliate to operate. Critical business functions can change from year to year, so review your existing business disaster plan to account for any changes and update as needed.
These questions can help start the process:
- How much downtime can your Affiliate tolerate without incurring significant financial impact?
- Which functions are necessary to fulfill legal or regulatory obligations?
- What functions are essential for your Affiliate to operate?
Be sure to prioritize each business function (high, medium or low) and determine who among your staff is responsible. Record detailed notes outlining the steps that should be taken in common disaster scenarios, including power outages, damage to equipment or natural disasters.
Work with your employees to ensure they fully understand the procedures for recovering critical business functions. Name an alternate employee to take charge should a primary employee be unavailable during an emergency. This advance planning will help everyone recognize their role.
Prepare Your Recovery Location
If your plans include the use of a recovery location as an alternative site for Affiliate operations, take time to review your needs. Be certain the location is adequate. It is a good idea to contact the recovery location prior to extreme weather seasons. Review the plan and make sure everyone is on the same page. The location should be equipped with any special supplies or equipment that will be needed to continue operations.
Severe weather can cause disruption to your Affiliate’s activities, but a severe weather management plan can help your Affiliate bounce back quickly after the storm has passed. Take the time now to ensure you are prepared for this season’s severe weather events.