Nearly one in five organizations surveyed by IFMA and RLE Technologies does not have a plan for emergency preparedness and business continuity, according to a joint study by the two organizations. FM professionals have a key role to play in instituting the study’s top 10 crisis plan concepts.
1. Define roles Who is responsible for forming and executing the plan? The facility department often either fills this role or is a major contributor to it.
2. Define mission-critical functions Prioritize your organization’s most important functions so you can determine where to dedicate the most resources and what to address first in case of a failure.
3. Define risks Assess all vulnerabilities, especially to the mission-critical functions from step 2, and determine the likelihood of those vulnerabilities.
4 .Calculate costs Estimate the cost of downtime and the cost of proper preparation and planning.
5. Monitor conditions Utilize your manpower and technology to catch disasters before they occur.
6. Communicate Make sure your post-emergency communications plan is resilient.
7. Test Ensure the elements of your plan are in good working order by testing them to ensure they’ll work during a real emergency.
8. Practice Whenever possible, conduct live drills and tabletop exercises. Developing muscle memory for how to respond is crucial for responding to a real emergency.
9. Adapt and adjust Don’t just write a plan and file it away in a drawer. Make regular adjustments as needed based on testing, practice and changing priorities.
10. Crowdsource. Develop a network of strategic partners (including service providers and other nearby organizations) and FM colleagues that you can reach out to for advice in an emergency.