Covid-19 is currently at the top of the agenda for businesses, and for good reason. Here are some of our thoughts on key points to consider to ensure your business is fully prepared.
- Ensure your employees are protected – ensure you have people monitoring local government and World Health Organisation advice. Keep all staff up to date on the company policy/response to the health advice and update procedures as required.
- Coordinate and lead the response – activate or put in place a cross-functional team (Crisis Management Team for example) which has representatives from across the business. Review your business continuity plans and manage the wider logistics (and costs) of changing your ‘business as usual’ activities. Consider elements such as minimum staffing levels required to maintain operations and IT disruption and ability to continue financial and operational activities dependent on IT systems, whether on site or remotely.
- Manage the impact – investigate and implement flexible or home-working arrangements, whilst considering whether your technology estate can cope with the surge in remote working. Alongside the performance and capability of remote working, you will also need to carefully consider the regulatory impact, such as Data Protection. Plan resourcing strategies such as the re-allocation of staff, the splitting of teams, the rotation of in-office/home-working arrangements or the cross-training of staff who perform business-critical functions, to minimise the risks of disruption if large numbers of staff, or key staff, are absent.
- Identify and manage contract and supply chain risks – review your ability to meet your contractual obligations to customers and understand the risks in your supply chain.
- Prepare, test, remediate – scenario and stress test your business continuity plans or plans for remote working. Get this done early, capture what worked, what didn’t work, and get the remediation plan in place so you are prepared in the event of needing to implement the plan for real.