Disaster recovery is a set of policies and procedures which enable a business to recover from natural or human-made disaster. Disaster recovery is based on the IT or technological systems which support business functions, as opposed to business continuity, which keeps critical business functions running even after a disruptive event.

Disaster recovery strategy should start at the business level. The approach should assist the business to determine the applications which are critical to running the business.

Once the worst of a natural disaster has come to pass, the struggle begins for an organization, especially if its operations sustained major damages. This article discusses how businesses should manage disaster recovery. This should happen through the following:

Contact your insurer immediately

Businesses should contact their insurance companies before cleaning up any damage as this helps the business to get an accurate estimate of the damages. Many insurers have emergency response teams, which will always be available to survey the situation after the disaster. The business should ensure that all the damaged materials have been taken into account because they are all evidence of the impact of the catastrophe on your business.

Stay on top of communication

Once the worst is over, it’s always good to keep your customers and clients updated on what’s happening. Updating the homepage of your business’ website to let the customers know the steps you are taking to recover from the disaster is one way of keeping your customers updated. Also, once you expect to reopen your business, it’s good to notify your clients.

Businesses should be honest about whatever might be happening, and the time they expect to take before they regain full operations. They should also give a detailed report of the operating plan for the recovery period. By doing this, your customers will acknowledge that your business knows how to deal with its problems, and this can earn you their trust.

Seek assistance

Businesses can also seek financial help to help them recover from the adverse effects of a disaster. Any business, regardless of its size, which is located in a declared disaster zone, can apply for low-interest and long-term loans to assist in recovering from physical damage. Even if the business’ property was not damaged, a business could apply for a loan to help in relieving the economic effects caused by the disaster.

Don’t rely on FEMA for quick assistance

So long as your business is in a federally declared disaster region, federal assistance will be available for your business. However, federal aid can move slowly especially if they are handling many claims.  Homeowners can receive money to rebuild their homes or temporary shelters. But for business owners, insurance covers or loans can be the best opportunity to receive the money they require fast.

Have a backup plan

Businesses should always have a business continuity plan in place, but if not, they should be prepared for the adverse effects a disaster can bring. A business continuity plan outlines how a business is supposed to respond to a catastrophe.

If your business doesn’t have a business continuity plan, considerations should be made to put a disaster recovery in place for its most critical files.

Upgrade your insurance coverage for the future

Many businesses are not protected in case of floods or earthquakes. Some of these firms are not located near fault lines or floodplains, and so they don’t see the need for protecting themselves against these disasters.

Businesses should also note that not many insurance companies provide cover for damages caused by hurricanes or disruptions caused by storms. Therefore, it is important for the businesses to review their insurance policies to understand their coverage.

It is recommended for businesses to consider adding an extra or separate policy to cover for damages caused by factors not included in the existing insurance policy.