In April 2015, Baltimore, MD erupted in chaos as protesters stormed the streets following the death of 25-year-old Freddie Gray. Rioters showed no scruples about damaging physical property, and a Small Business Administration survey later estimated the damages at $9 million.
But while many businesses weren’t equipped to handle the disruption, one local service provider was prepared. Rather than shutting its doors while waiting for the rioting to subside, the business simply relocated its operations to a building it owned outside of the hot zone. The building was already equipped with tables and chairs, and the business worked with a third-party business continuity and disaster recovery (BC/DR) vendor to have office equipment shipped in within 24 hours.
What would you do if your business experienced an interruption due to a civil unrest, a terrorist event, workplace violence or other kind of event that might make your own organization or city a crime scene? Follow the lead of the Baltimore service provider and take these precautions:
- Have physical space ready. It could be a building you own, a previously contracted third-party building or a mobile workspace.
- Make sure you have access to backup equipment, whether it’s your own inventory stored off-site or equipment that you’ve precontracted from a BC/DR provider.
- Make a plan of action and test it. Creating a plan of action and testing it helps your employees know what to do in the heat of the moment and helps you fine-tune the plan.
Unfortunately, you won’t receive prior notice when a crime occurs on your doorstep. But with some advance planning, you can relocate your operations and protect your business.
To learn more about integrating workspace recovery and IT disaster recovery to maintain business continuity, read this post.