Emergency preparedness is a broad concern for businesses seeking to ready themselves in today’s ever-changing risk landscape. Whether stemming from crime or natural disasters, the cost of business interruption and disaster recovery can, depending on the size of a company, have a significant long-term impact on everything from productivity to profit.
The international business security experts at IMG GlobalSecur can help you by conducting a top-to-bottom emergency preparedness audit. It starts with brainstorming and researching what might constitute an “emergency.” Might it be a terrorist incident? Perhaps a cyberthreat like the hacking of a corporating meeting? Or perhaps it’s as “mundane” as Senior Executives getting stranded in a country that’s undergoing political upheavel. An “emergency” can take many forms, including workplace violence or other sorts of threats. Next, we have to assess how prepared each aspect of your business is – starting with your key physical assets but also looking at cyber or computer assets and concluding with human assets.
Preparing for a Business Emergency
What emergencies can companies anticipate in their efforts to adequately prepare? There are a number of factors that should be considered when evaluating levels of preparedness. To adequately plan, companies with facilities at multiple locations should avoid using a one-size-fits-all approach. One facility might be located in a country or region where natural disasters and severe weather are more likely to occur, while another facility’s location might have more concerns related to terrorism or other crimes.
Heightened preparedness starts with an honest evaluation of risks, then a prioritized approach that is based on potential impact. Natural disasters, i.e. flooding or hurricanes may impact production and transportation as well as facilities themselves. When planning for those types of emergencies, what kind of business continuity planning is in place? Can production be shifted to other facilities, and if so, are they prepared to procure additional materials or labor? Is there a clear communication plan in place to facilitate any necessary transfer of work?
Anticipating when an act of terrorism or civil unrest might occur is difficult at best, but those kinds of events might need to considered when evaluating some facilities’ levels of emergency preparedness. Even when physical and supply chain security are high, a single serious event can impact business continuity.
While addressing business continuity concerns, emergency preparedness planning should also include employee safety. Is there some type of plan, however basic, in place to assist business travelers or groups attending meetings or events?
Reaching out for a Business Emergency Preparedness Audit
Because emergency preparedness is such a multi-faceted topic, companies wishing to adequately plan should take a highly tailored approach. At a minimum they should consider the highest priority concerns for each business location. Looking past an initial crisis, they should seek ways to plan for concerns related to international travel security, supply chain security, labor, transportation and logistics as part of ongoing business continuity planning. Because the risk landscape continues to evolve, it’s crucial for businesses to conduct periodic evaluations of their level of preparedness and response. A good first step? Reaching out to the experts at IMG GlobalSecur for an emergency preparedness audit. Having an expert analysis can really help you “see” your vulnerabilities and then make a plan on how to respond to them.