During 14 natural disasters in 2018, the estimated financial loss across the United States was $91 billion.
Many small and mid-sized businesses are only one large financial loss away from closing their doors. Since you never know when a natural disaster is going to strike, you have to have an emergency action plan in place.
Creating one may sound daunting to business owners who haven’t considered this, but it’s essential if you want to protect your business.
Keep reading to learn what your emergency action plan needs to contain.
The first thing you need is support from your executive team. This may include only upper-level executives or your board of directors. Without the decision-makers on board, you’ll never be able to put an emergency action plan in place.
Once you get this support, you can start determining who will be responsible for which tasks should the unthinkable occur.
You also need to have your employees involved in the action plan. Each member of your team should know what they are expected to do in the event of an emergency.
Part of this involves informing employees of the procedures and the other part is practicing for emergencies. You should be having regular fire drills, tornado drills, and anything else you need to ensure your employees know what to do.
It may seem strange to include this on here, but it will take time and money to prepare for an emergency. Weigh the cost of loss versus loss prevention to determine how much you can afford to spend on emergency planning.
Creating a clear evaluation of how much a disaster could cost your business will also go a long way in convincing reluctant executives of the need for an emergency action plan.
If you don’t know how much your business is worth or what you have on hand, it can be nearly impossible for your insurance company to determine loss after facing a disaster.
For that reason, it’s essential to keep inventory lists on hand and updated at all times. There should be one person in charge of this so whenever things are replaced or purchased, the inventory list stays accurate.
The final part of preparing to create an emergency action plan is to do a complete hazard analysis. You have to know which disasters are most likely to strike your business so you can focus on preparing for those.
Consider your region and the weather there. A business located in Florida, for example, wouldn’t have to worry about snowstorms but they would need to plan for hurricanes.
Taking this step will prevent your company from wasting money on preparing for disasters that aren’t likely to occur.
Now you know how an emergency action plan can help your business and the five essential elements of one.
If you still feel overwhelmed by this task, learn more about our natural disaster planning services. We can help you ensure your business is protected no matter what may come your way.