The short answer is yes, you do need a disaster recovery plan. No matter how small your business is, if you have a plan in place, you’ll come out of any type of disaster a lot better than if you don’t make plans.
Let’s consider the kinds of things you need to plan for, which will vary depending on the type of business you own.
Documented Response Plan
The first thing you need to create is a plan regarding how you will respond in the event of a disaster. More than likely, you’ll have a different response prepared based on the various things that can happen to you in your area in terms of natural disasters and so forth.
Protecting Your Equipment
Make a list of all the equipment that you use to do your business and anything that you use in your life that makes it easier to do your business. Make sure you have the right type of insurance that will enable you to quickly replace what needs replacing to keep working. Take pictures of everything you have and attach a copy of the receipt to it, so it’s easier to justify.
Keeping a Detailed Inventory of Your Assets
Further to the above, take pictures of everything that you may lose in a disaster related to your business, or that enables you to do your business. Attach a copy of the purchase receipts to the images. You can keep physical copies, but you’re better off scanning it all and keeping it in the cloud for easy access.
Ensuring Your Data Integrity
One thing that is important during disasters is to know what is happening to your data. For example, if there is a fire that burns down the server that keeps your data, do they have redundant systems that enable them to back it up in an unaffected area?
Checking Your Backup Systems
Every bit of content you generate internally and externally needs to be backed up. In most cases, a cloud server system can help you ensure the integrity of the data you are keeping, but you’ll want to talk to the owners to ensure that it all works the way you think it does. It might also help to create step-by-step directions on how to access information if your primary method of doing so is ruined.
Vendor and Service Provider Information
If your ability to communicate is ruined – for example, if you have all the information on your computer or your smartphone which is lost or destroyed in a disaster, how will you contact any vendors and service providers that work with you? Have a plan in place so that you can find them regardless.
Access to Funds
In any disaster, the one thing that can prevent a small business owner from success is access to funds. If you’re running a tight and lean business, you may not need much to keep your business afloat. However, if you don’t have insurance or a backup account that will let you replace your systems fast, you may lose it all due to that disaster.
Anything can happen. You can wake up today to a bright sunny day and end the day with a disaster. If you’re not ready, it will make it a lot worse for you and your customers. However, if you have a plan in place, you can simply pull out the plan you’ve created based on possible disaster sceneries you may face, and get started with your recovery fast. It doesn’t matter if your business consists of one person or 100 people – a plan will ensure that you can keep your business going no matter what.