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5 Tips for Creating a Business Continuity Plan for your Small Business

When you are operating a business there is nothing as bad as a missed opportunity. Any unexpected event whether manmade or natural can greatly disrupt your business. To avoid such problems it’s very important to create a business continuity plan. A good business continuity plan will help you reduce the loss and downtime in case there is a disruption. It will also help boost your employee and customer confidence and ensure that your business is back on track. Read through to learn some of the tips that can help you.

1. Analyze your operations
Reacting quickly to disruption can be the difference between business closure and survival. You, therefore, need to identify your key business processes and functions and decide how long you can be able to move on without them. Ask yourselves your main product or service and some of the things that could affect your business. By knowing these, you will be much better placed to ensure that your business continues to run.

2. Make a list of all the disasters that might affect your business
The best thing to do is to come up with a list of all types and disasters and try to check out what could be lost and what can be done to prevent these. As compared to the power outage, a flood will require a totally different strategy. Also, estimate how long it will take and how much it will cost you so that your business can be up and running again.

3. Know how to contact your workers, clients, and suppliers
It’s not a good thing to search for phone numbers in the middle of a crisis. Make sure you have all the emergency numbers programmed into your phones. Even if your main phone shut down you should have an alternative mode of communication. Your clients should be able to contact you without knowing that you have a problem. Making arrangements concerning communication is very important if you want your business to run smoothly. Communicating with your clients and staff members can make all the difference and minimize any business interruption.

4. Prepare your business finances
Whether it’s having an emergency cash plan or the correct insurance you need to prepare your finances in advance. By doing this you will hugely shield your business from any form of disruption. A well-stocked emergency cash plan can help you buy crucial equipment and increase your stock during an emergency. Also, work with your insurance agent so that he can help you determine the best coverage for your business.

5. Keep your data safe
In case of a disaster, it’s important to know that everything you need for your business is readily available. Make sure you identify all the documents, systems, and data that you may need. Although it’s very important for every business to backup data, it can be a bit challenging if the fire destroys your office. Due to this reason, you need to have an offsite storage mechanism. This will allow you to access all the data stored from anywhere.

Those are the top 5 tips for creating business continuity plan. Remember, any smart business should always have an emergency preparedness plan.

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Leona is part of the content and community team at Specialty Fuel Services - providers of emergency fuel continuation services, in locations affected by catastrophic events.