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Business Continuity Planning

Published on: 2/13/2013 4:18 PM

INSURANCE – Most companies discover that they are not properly insured only after they have suffered a loss.  Lack of appropriate insurance can be financially devastating.  See Insurance, Records & Important Documents.

MANAGEMENT – You can assume that not every key person will be readily available after an emergency.  Ensure that recovery decisions can be made without undue delay.
  • Litigation - Consult your legal resources regarding laws and corporate bylaws governing continuity of management.
  • Command - Establish procedures to assure the continuity of the management.
  • Key Personnel - Establish procedures to maintain succession for key personnel.
  • Headquarters - Establish procedures to move to alternate headquarters, if necessary.

HUMAN RESOURCES – As always, the employees who rely on you for support after an emergency are your most valuable asset.  Consider the range of services you could provide them:

  • Cash payroll advances.
  • Salary continuation.
  • Flexible work hours.
  • Reduced work hours.
  • Crisis counseling.
  • Care packages.
  • Day care.
  • Temporary relocation.
RECORDS – Records preservation will be important for business operations as well as insurance purposes.

  • Engineers - Engineers may help determine how hazardous your facilities may be and offer available options to make them safe.
  • Alternate Location - Plan to relocate operations as another option.


EQUIPMENT – Have a plan to repair or replace all critical equipment.

  • Recovery Team – Establish a recovery team and priorities for resuming operations.
  • Safety – Ensure the safety of personnel on the property.
    • Assess remaining hazards.
    • Maintain security at the incident scene.
  • Communication –
    • Conduct an employee briefing.
    • Follow notification procedures for employees’ families, off-duty personnel, insurance carriers, and government agencies.
    • Maintain contact with customers and suppliers.
  • Records – Keep detailed records.
    • Consider audio recording all decisions.
    • Take photographs of or videotape the damage.
    • Establish special job order numbers and charge codes for purchases and repair work.
  • Facilities / Equipment –
    • Protect undamaged property.
      • Close up building openings.
      • Remove smoke, water, and debris.
      • Protect equipment from moisture.
      • Physically secure the property.
    • Restore sprinkler systems.
    • Restore power.
    • Conduct salvage operations.
      • Segregate damaged from undamaged property.
      • Keep damaged goods on hand until an insurance adjuster has visited the premises.
    • Take an inventory of damaged goods.  This is usually done with the adjuster, or the adjuster’s salvor if there is any appreciable amount of goods or value.  If you release goods to the salvor, obtain a signed inventory stating the quantity and type of goods being removed.
    • Restore equipment and facilities.  For major repair work, review restoration plans with the insurance adjuster and appropriate government agencies.
    • Assess the value of damaged property.
    • Assess the impact of business interruption.
  • Investigation – Conduct an investigation.  Coordinate actions with appropriate government agencies.
CONTRACTING – Consider making plans for contracting post-emergency services and/or operations on a temporary basis.

(Attribution:  Public-Private Partnership with Federal Emergency Management Agency).