• Are you ready for an emergency?

Are you ready for an emergency?

We typically think of emergencies coming in the form of a large scale natural or manmade disaster. But not every calamity comes with a five-alarm fire response. Most emergencies are everyday situations gone awry such as security hacks or even computer failure, affecting our lives and businesses wherever we work. The good news is the impact of these difficulties can be mitigated with thoughtful planning and good small business disaster recovery plan steps.

Woman holding mask over her mouth

Putting your home office and small business disaster recovery plan in place.

With some analysis and planning you can handle the most immediate small business disaster recovery needs for yourself and your employees:

  • Start with a basic emergency response plan and make sure everyone knows what to do and where to do it in the event of an evacuation or shelter-in-place drill. Different disasters require different responses (tornado versus earthquake versus active shooter). Assign a Safety Manager and a method for everyone to check in with that person or each other (i.e., a place to rendezvous if the physical building is compromised).
  • Create a list of emergency contact information that includes state and local emergency management agencies. Make sure you have the names of your financial institutions, major clients, insurance company and agents, and any key business contacts you may need to reach when things settle down. Check your insurance is up to date and covers the possible disasters in your area.
  • Prepare emergency supplies including food and first aid kits, and make sure you have backup power and a backup communications system. Encourage employees to assemble a personal emergency kit, especially those requiring medication.

photo of exit sign

Remember to practice disaster recovery drills regularly and keep in mind that the first priority is preserving human life; the second is to limit property and inventory damage. Next, assemble a plan for your physical workplace and the work that will be impacted by an interruption to business:

  • Keep backup data files stored off site and place important documents in a safe deposit box. Xerox® ConnectKey® Technology enabled printers let you easily digitize documents and store in the cloud for better organization. And Xerox® Web Capture Service automates and scans documents directly into web applications.
  • Plan to have your building inspected to make sure it is safe to return. Be prepared to find alternative facilities and consider working out an agreement for space with another business.
  • Include financial contingencies in your business plan if you have to shut down for an extended period of time. Also consider your ability to conduct business if suppliers or your employees are unable to reach you (as well as customers).
  • Be prepared to create notices or a communication method (i.e., social media) to reach regular clients and the general public about your status after the disaster.

photo of digital display of numbers and text "cyber attack"


people pointing and looking at computer monitor

Preparing for disasters of a different kind.

For today’s business owner – and private citizen – security hacks and server or equipment failures can equal natural disasters in time and money lost.


Take steps now by making basic changes to your computer systems at home and work like automating security updates so that you’re always covered with the latest malware protection.

  • Enable basic protections — Make sure automatic update programs are turned on and change or create passwords whenever you receive notices.
  • Security clearance — Wireless routers and access points don’t come secured by default so enable encryption or else anyone can easily connect to your Wi-Fi network. Limit your access to shared folders and be wary of letting the public or guests onto your private network.
  • Train up your people — For starters, avoid leaving documents at the printer and make sure they delete emails from people they don’t know, especially if it contains an attachment or hyperlink.
  • Upgrade — Refresh your hardware regularly, and look for products that have security built in, like our AltaLink® advanced printers that are certified by the National Information Assurance Partnership (NIAP).

Create your disaster recovery plan steps before emergencies occur and not only will you be prepared, you’ll create peace of mind for yourself and your employees.

Discover more small business tips to find the best ways to be ready for the unexpected.

Contact your reseller or Shop Xerox for a free consultation today.