Before disaster strikes, be prepared. Also be aware of how you think about “disaster”. In Northeast Ohio, snow storms that ground deliveries, employees and customers can be just as difficult to manage as other more serious issues. Having a plan and knowing what to do can make all the difference.

First, review your insurance coverage. Make sure you know what you will need to have if there was an emergency or a claim and have that stored securely. If possible, have it stored in multiple locations.

Next, prepare for utility interruptions. Can’t run your business without electricity and internet? Have backups.

Identify “go / no go” items – Identify those people, pieces of equipment, customers, parts, etc. that are required to keep your company running. If they weren’t available, what would you do? Have those contingencies ready to go and well documented.

Back up files – An off-site backup means you have access to your files even if something terrible happened and you couldn’t get to your office. Be sure to back things up and test your back up regularly.

Here are some sites to help you with disaster planning:
Prepare My Business
Ready by FEMA
American Red Cross Readiness Rating
This publication is only available to customers of member-organizations.
Evacuation Plans and Procedures tool
Using a Fire Extinguisher
Preparing Your Business for the Unthinkable
Do I need business interruption insurance?