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ARI Blog: Article

Restoration Insurance Tips: Disaster Planning Mistakes (Part 1)


As a restoration contractor, you specialize in repairing disasters that occur to others. What happens, though, if a catastrophe finds your company ill-equipped and unprepared for a calamity that occurs to your own company?

We’ve compiled a list of the most common disaster planning mistakes restoration contractors make and tips on what your company can do to avoid them.

Mistake #1: Failing to Inform Employees Properly

In our experience working with restoration contractors on developing risk management and disaster plans, we have found that many companies have at least started on a plan or even have a basic one in place. However, many of those same companies fail to inform their employees of their disaster plan or share what they should do in an emergency.

Tip: Be sure to inform all current employees of your disaster plans and integrate your plan into your new hire training so all employees will understand.

Mistake #2: Failing to Prepare Employees

While many companies will address what their employees should do when they’re at the office and a disaster strikes, very few companies address what to do if they are at home. For example, does your company have a way for employees to work from home if necessary?

Or, if you have critical employees, like executives, do you know if they have a plan to meet with the other executives in an emergency? Key employees, including executives, should have a way to access company files if stranded at home. Additionally, you may want to consider having those employees store extra gasoline at their homes to ensure they can make it to any meeting where you need them.

Mistake #3: Failing to Address IT Needs Adequately

Most companies will have some data backup to prepare for a disaster, but how many have addressed how they will use that backup to get their systems up and running again? Do you know if you have the IT staff in place to get you back up and running quickly? Or, if you use a 3rd party systems administrator, do you know how they will respond to your company in an emergency.

Tip: Communicate openly and regularly with your IT department to ensure all parties are of the same understanding before any claim. If you use a 3rd party company for your IT needs, make sure you know how they will get you back up and running.

Mistake #4: Over-Reliance on 3rd Party Information

When disasters strike, most people tend to rely too much on external information to make decisions on getting back up and running. For example, do you know when the power and utilities will return? Or when will you gain access back to your property?

Tip: Your disaster plan should include information on how your business can sustain itself for at least 72 hours without power or access to your office.

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