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Whether it’s flooding, a fire, or a cyberattack, hazards can strike a business at any moment. 40 percent of businesses never reopen after a disaster. There are actions business owners can take to prepare their organization for a disaster. These actions can help you avoid becoming a statistic! 

Develop an Emergency Plan

  • Assign a team to lead disaster planning efforts for your business
  • Review the identified threats and hazards we face here in the District of Columbia and identify what could potentially interrupt your business
  • Identify the critical functions that your business performs
  • Rank the functions for restoration 
  • Develop restoration procedures for each function and a plan to ensure continuity of operations (COOP) 

Protect Critical Information

  • Assign a team to lead disaster planning efforts for your business
  • Back-up important files to prevent damage or loss 
  • Back-up urgent data to prevent corruption or loss 
  • Consider alternative, off-site storage such as cloud-based data storage 
  • Maintain and update contact information for your: 
    • Employees 
    • Vendors 
    • Suppliers 
    • Insurers 
    • Other key points of contact 

Train and Exercise Emergency Procedures

  • Develop emergency response procedures
  • Develop emergency response procedures
  • Conduct refresher trainings on emergency procedures.  
  • Administer tests of emergency alert and communication equipment. This includes PA systems, fire alarms, and phone trees 
  • Execute tests of emergency plans and procedures  
  • Practice restoring and recovering critical functions  
  • Take into account the needs of your employees when creating plans and procedures. Review the District’s preparedness tips for individuals with access and functional needs.

Prepare Employees

  • Develop emergency response procedures
  • Encourage employees to stay informed by downloading the free HSEMA app and signing up for AlertDC to receive emergency updates from District officials.  
  • Help employees make an emergency kit that can be stored at their desks 
  • Maintain and update emergency contact information for employees and ensure staff knows who to report their safety to in an emergency 
  • Take steps to ensure that employees are preparing their family for disasters 

Become a BEMOC Member

An effective emergency response requires a whole community approach. A crucial part of the whole community is the private sector. The BEMOC helps businesses before, during and after emergencies.  

The BEMOC Helps Businesses:

  • Prepare their business through planning assistance  
  • Prepare their employees  
  • Build partnerships with the private sector to aid a full community response 
  • Assist their community during a disaster 
  • Make informed decisions necessary to reopen after a disaster 

As a BEMOC Member You Will Receive:

  • Prepare their business through planning assistance
  • Information sharing with the public sector during emergencies 
  • Access to free emergency response training and exercises 
  • Technical assistance for business continuity planning  
  • Key information needed to make informed decisions for long-term recovery 

Become a BEMOC member today by signing up here.  

Additional Resources