Your Disaster Plan: Continual
You want your disaster plan, also known as a “business continuity” plan, to be complete, accurate, functional, up to date, and able to meet your recovery objectives. To ensure that you meet these goals, there’s no better way than a “live test.”
You can create buy-in among managers and staff by providing a test scenario that’s specific, realistic, detailed, and comprehensive.
Consider this real-world example: A television communication company in Miami was completing its disaster plan when it learned that a powerful hurricane was headed straight toward Southeastern Florida. Fortunately, because the business had several days’ warning, it was able to implement the plan rapidly and communicate it to employees. Although the company was prepared for the worst, the storm struck to the south and west, near Key West.
Although there was no significant damage in the Miami area, the exercise tested important components of the plan, such as the ability of the business to:
- protect equipment and strengthen the building in a timely and orderly manner
- activate and maintain an alternate transmission site
- test backup electrical generation and other equipment under adverse weather conditions
- communicate emergency technical instructions to affiliate stations throughout the Spanish and Portuguese speaking world
- sponsor a shelter for emergency storm personnel
- release and recall staff in an orderly basis
A post-disaster meeting led to a number of refinements in the plan. Most important, the exercise confirmed the ability of the company to maintain important business activities at a pre-established acceptable level, with minimal impact to its customers and revenue stream.
If you’d like advice on testing your company’s business continuity plan before disaster strikes, just give us a call.