Your ability to respond quickly to a business disruption could mean the difference between survival and closure. To determine the maximum amount of time your business could afford to stay closed after a disaster occurs, you need to know your operations. First, identify your key business functions and processes … and then decide how long you can go without being able to perform them.
Consider the following:
- What is my main product or service?
- How do I produce this product or service?
- What are the things that could most likely impact my ability to do business?
- If my business was impacted, who would I need to call? How would I reach them?
- What other business functions and processes do I perform to run my overall business? Consider functions in all areas: Accounting/Finance, Production/Service Delivery, Sales/Marketing, Customer Service, Human Resources, Administration, Information Technology and Purchasing.
- Which of these functions and processes involve legal, contractual, regulatory or financial obligations?
- Can the function be performed offsite? What equipment is needed?
- How much downtime can I tolerate for each function?
- What are the consequences if the function cannot be performed?
- Can my business survive without a specific function?
If you can’t answer every question (don’t worry, we can help!), we recommend listing all your business functions, then filling out a separate form for each one.
Using our printable business function form, rate each with a priority level of Extremely High, High, Medium or Low, and consider any possible workarounds or backups for each function, as well as any temporary processes that could be implemented until a permanent solution is available. Document detailed procedures for these workarounds and processes, including any additional resources needed.
To truly know your operations, download our printable business function form now. Then, to keep your plan relevant, review your business functions and processes every six months.
Frankly speaking, the best businesses are prepared for the worst, and our Disaster Preparedness Guide has you covered.