Business Continuity in Challenging Times
It is never too soon to consider what your business will do in the event of a disaster–a cyber attack, a natural disaster, or an epidemic. In the Covid-19 pandemic and subsequent quarantine, many businesses have still managed to continue operating with employees working from home. These times have been a test of any business continuity plan and have also proved the need to have a plan in place. Read on to learn more about developing and refining a plan for your business in these challenging times.
Business Continuity Goes Beyond Data
A key element in any business continuity plan is handling data—storage, transmission and protection. Data is the lifeblood of your business, and must be readily available and kept safe from loss and compromise. Questions to consider include whether data will be stored on site, in the cloud, or both; which mission – critical data needs to be readily available; and how that data will be backed up. Also, how do you protect proprietary information with employees working remotely, under varying conditions? With employees working remotely, the risks are higher. If there is a cyber attack, who will handle it, and how? Another consideration is the human element — caring for employees and customers during the on-going quarantine.
Caring for Employees and Customers
This pandemic–or any disaster–offers an opportunity for companies to become trusted leaders for employees and customers alike. According to CompTIA, one way to guide employees through a disaster situation is to communicate proactively with them. You can share both good and challenging news with them, in order to reassure them. Topics to talk about with them include when your business is likely to reopen and what safety measures will be taken.
To remain vital to customers, CompTIA recommends a ‘serving’ over a ‘selling’ approach. One idea to consider in your plan is sharing resources (webinars, articles, or checklists) with your customers; these resources can help reduce stress and also to cement your business’s reputation as a trusted partner. Inspire trust by adapting to employee and customer needs, such as tailoring employees’ hours to their most productive times. An idea for serving customers is providing flexible payment arrangements. Long after the emergency and its stresses recede your customers and employees will remember your efforts.
This year’s experience with Covid-19 is an example of why a business continuity plan is needed. For help and developing or refining your plan, contact us today.