With the recent tornadoes across the Oklahoma and the Mid-West, it brought to mind the importance of being prepared so I dug out my old article on disaster preparedness. Ready.gov states that 1 in 4 businesses never reopen after a disaster, plan to NOT be one of those that never reopen. Plan your recovery before its needed.
To see the supplies that Ready.gov recommends please visit http://www.ready.gov/build-a-kit and look at the various kits with supplies needed.
Common sense tells us, that businesses should keep copies of their most important files offsite. Personally, I use several methods personally, I use an external drive that is a complete copy and I can grab it and run if need be as well as online methods. There are numerous online backup options that are very good. . Carbonite, Backupmyinfo.com, and others as well as Box.com, DropBox.com and similar to drop in files you’ll need if working away from home. Also, I backup onto DVDs and store these in fireproof safes, and the really urgent information is easily grabbed as I’m running out the door. I use Nero BackItUp 12 for my backups to the external drive and to DVD.
Be prepared. Your equipment should be insured. Don’t use a rider on your homeowner’s policy, you should have business insurance that covers your equipment. All of it. Make an inventory of all the software you have, whether its installed or not, list your peripherals List your books. If you have a radio in your office, list that! List EVERYTHING! Take pictures of your equipment, store your receipts with your inventory, OFF SITE (or in digital format offsite). My Office inventory is electronic, and is stored offsite, AND backed up regularly. Keep your inventory up to date. When you prepare your inventory, don’t forget about your various logins and account access codes and passwords. I have a book of key codes, kept in my fireproof safe. For my more sensitive logins, those are encrypted on a flash drive in the safe. Keep this list as up to date as possible.
During severe weather, surges often cripple your equipment, which is why it is vital your equipment be protected with high quality surge protection, and if you lose power suddenly, having an uninteruptable power supply (UPS) can give you the time you need to save what you’re working on and shut your equipment down (or get out and start the generator). High quality UPS systems also include surge protection. Include your PHONES on the surge protection. Often, your telephone is one piece of equipment that is forgotten about when it comes to equipment protection. I use a cloud based telephone which I can access from anywhere, and easily forward calls to my cell from the office.
Visit Ready.gov for more information about disaster preparedness for your home and your business. Become familiar with what you need to do, and what needs to be on hand. Stay alert to the news, and be prepared.
Sending my thoughts and prayers to all effected by the destructive weather this season.