Is your business ready for a catastrophe? Do you have a business evacuation plan in place?
A study conducted by the Institute for Business and Home Safety suggests that almost 25% of businesses don’t reopen after a serious disaster. Therefore, it’s important to protect your business by identifying potential risks to your location from both manmade and natural disasters. You owe it to your staff and customers.
Preparing for a disaster with a business evacuation plan should be a top priority. Planning for disasters and emergencies is a critical aspect of running a business.
A business evaluation plan can help you and your staff:
- Respond to disasters and emergencies quickly
- Stay safe
- Prevent or reduce downtime during an emergency or disaster
- Resume operations as soon as possible
What is a Business Evacuation Plan?
Evacuations are more common than business owners realize. They are mostly the results of floods, tornadoes, hurricanes, and fires. Major storms can lead to mass evacuations of businesses. Not only this but almost every year, industrial accidents release life-threatening chemicals and toxins that force many people to leave their place of work. This is where the need for a business evacuation plan comes into the picture.
It’s important to plan how you will gather your employees, equipment, and supplies for business evacuation and decide where you will go in different situations. Identify evacuation routes and pick safe locations where you can move your business temporarily in the event of an emergency or disaster.
A business evacuation plan should include:
- An assessment of the impact of the emergency/disaster on your business
- Critical steps to minimize exposure to potential risks that could lead to business closure
- Mitigation guidelines
- Emergency/disaster recovery plan
How to Create an Effective Business Evacuation Plan
Every business is made of different units, such as customers, physical assets, supply chain, products, and services, that must be included in the business evacuation plan.
Whether it’s a fire or earthquake, here are some important things you should be following while evacuating your commercial property:
- Remain calm
- Immediately move to the safest exit
- Assist colleagues as and when possible but practice personal safety first
- Take not more than a minute to gather your personal belongings
- If possible, shut down critical operations/equipment before exiting the building
- Allow the emergency personnel to do their jobs
Advance planning always comes in handy to make the recovery of IT processes easy and quick after an emergency or disaster.
- Perform regular backups of your data
- Create a list of all the hardware in your workplace so that you can replace what is needed
- Determine the number of equipment you need to function properly in a disaster
- Conduct regular recovery exercises to avoid issues during emergencies and disasters
Smart Building Technology for Smoother Business Evacuation
While you cannot prevent emergencies and natural disasters, you can take the necessary steps to mitigate the potential risks faced by your employees and ensure workplace safety comes from a well-planned business evacuation plan. Therefore, to minimize evacuation-related issues during a business evacuation, use smart building technology to relay information during evacuation.
Install Emergency Mass Notification Systems
Many companies are using alarm systems that sound different types of alarms for different situations. For instance, if a threat requires vigilance and not an emergency evacuation, the alarm will beep repeatedly. However, if an emergency evacuation is required, it will sound like a blaring siren.
An emergency mass notification system sends pre-recorded audio messages or pre-written text messages, email, push notifications, phone calls and desktop alerts signal evacuation. You can also connect it to digital signage, siren systems, and fire and smoke alarms. Even in the case of a power outage, devices that are connected to the local internet will receive the messages.
Situational Awareness Security Control (SASC) Systems
Situational Awareness Security Control (SASC) systems can help a great deal during human disasters, such as active shootings. These systems can assist with these kinds of incidents, notifying law enforcement at the first sound of gunfire and linking authorities to the scene via your video surveillance system. This is another reason why having a monitored security system with all components linked and functioning as a whole is useful.
At ProTech Security, we have a strong history of experience, innovation, and customer service. The ProTech Security Advantage is more than 35 years of service in Northeast Ohio and a strong commitment to providing quality, cost-effective protection for homes, businesses, educational institutions, and government facilities. To see what ProTech Security can do for you, contact us today.