23 February 2005

Why just having a Disaster Recovery Plan is not enough!

Association of Contingency Planners | Washington DC Chapter | February Chapter Meeting

Disaster Recovery Plans are only part of the picture! Do not forget your most important asset – your employees! In the fast moving readiness wave of global assurance and operational contingency, there is an important element missing from many plans. They are all predicated on having the key people actually surviving the disaster. Shouldn’t you be just as concerned with getting through the disaster when and as it occurs? Remember, in large-scale disaster, the professional rescuers may be hours or even days away from responding.

"FEMA defines an emergency as related to businesses as “any unplanned event that
can cause deaths or significant injuries to employees, customers or the public; or that can shut down your business, disrupt operations, cause physical or environmental
damage, or threaten the facility’s financial standing or public image.”

Obviously, there are many events that can be classified as emergencies. Of primary importance is creating a plan for dealing with various types of emergencies that may happen to your business. While you may not initially plan for every type of emergency, it is prudent to at least plan the likely scenarios and always try to improve your emergency response to other scenarios over time. This requires an “All Hazards” approach to your preparedness and response. All hazards planning are a clear step in the process of making sure your organization can survive an emergency event. All hazards planning include operational risks dealing with people, processes, systems and external events.

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