How quickly your company can get back to business after a terrorist attack, a tornado, a fire, or a flood often depends on emergency planning done today. While the Department of Homeland Security is working hard to prevent terrorist attacks, the lessons of the 1993 World Trade Center bombing, the 1995 Oklahoma City bombing and the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks demonstrate the importance of being prepared.
When you also consider that the number of declared major disasters nearly doubled in the 1990's compared to the previous decade, preparedness becomes an even more critical issue. Though each situation is unique, any organization can be better prepared if it plans carefully, puts emergency procedures in place, and practices for emergencies of all kinds.
America's businesses form the backbone of the nation's economy; small businesses alone account for more than 99% of all companies with employees, employ 50% of all private sector workers and provide nearly 45% of the nation's payroll. If businesses are READY to survive and recover, the nation and our economy are more secure. A commitment to planning today will help support employees, customers, the community, the local economy and even the country. It also protects your business investment and gives your company a better chance for survival.
Ready Business outlines commonsense measures business owners and managers can take to start getting ready. It provides practical steps and easy-to-use templates to help you plan for your company's future. These recommendations reflect the Emergency Preparedness and Business Continuity Standard, developed by the National Fire Protection Association and endorsed by the American National Standards Institute and the Department of Homeland Security. It also provides useful links to resources providing more detailed business continuity and disaster preparedness information.
Business continuity and crisis management can be complex issues depending on the particular industry, size and scope of your business. However, putting a plan in motion will improve the likelihood that your company will survive and recover. The following information is a good start for small- to mid-sized businesses. Companies that already have their emergency plans in place can continue to help create a more robust sustainable community by mentoring businesses in their own supply chain and others needing advice.