Hurricane Florence is expected to make landfall on the southeastern Atlantic coastline (primarily North and South Carolina) later this week as a Category 4 storm. While the Washington DC region is not in its direct path, we can expect heavy winds, rain and flooding to wreak havoc in our area as well. Florence is capable of catastrophic damage with maximum sustained winds of 130 miles per hour or more, so the time to prepare for storm damage and power loss is now.
After securing one’s personal safety and home, it’s also important to consider the impact this storm could have on your business. If time allows, these steps will help ensure that those businesses impacted are back up and running as quickly as possible after the storm.
Here are a few business continuity tips you should take as the storm approaches:
- Create a phone tree for your organization and stay in touch.
- Have a plan and contingencies.
- What do you need to take from your office?
- How will you support your customers, and from where?
- Send out the storm plan to your employees, customers and partners. Include a communications schedule and stick to it.
- Send an update to employees every few hours with what you know and don’t know.
- Send updates to customers, partners and suppliers with updates that affect them regularly.
- If your business cannot withstand a period of lengthy downtime, secure a facility further inland for you and your employees or ensure everyone is able to work remotely.
- Tropical storms can put data centers out of commission. Make sure your business data, backups, applications, and server images are stored off-site.
- Your IT professionals will be able to restore systems either virtually via the cloud or at the site where you’re resuming operations.
- If time allows, test the backups of crucial servers before the storm hits.
For more tips and information on how to protect from natural disasters, download our Natural Disaster Survival Guide for businesses here.