Be Prepared: Understand the Risks and How to Protect Your Business in a Natural Disaster

Review your company's policies and procedures during National Preparedness Month with resources from the U.S. Small Business Administration and ACA International.

9/12/2019 10:00 AM

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Be Prepared: Understand the Risks and How to Protect Your Business in a Natural Disaster

The significant and ongoing impact of Hurricane Dorian serves as an important reminder to review your emergency preparedness plans for your home and business to ensure your family and colleagues are safe—especially during National Preparedness Month—which falls in September.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is partnering with the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) to provide education on risks and assistance with business continuity plans as part of rebuilding and recovery this month, according to a news release.

Preparing in advance can go a long way toward protecting valuable assets and, when it comes to businesses, opening again as soon as possible after a storm or other disaster, according to the SBA.

The National Preparedness Month theme for the week of Sept. 8-14 is “Make a Plan to Prepare for Disasters.”

For businesses, especially in the accounts receivable management industry, ACA International’s Compliance Education Specialist Angela Czerlanis reports in the August issue of Collector magazine that it’s important to regularly review your company’s disaster response and communication plan. If your company doesn’t have a plan, rally your team and create one.

A disaster will also likely impact consumer communications.

In terms of agency operations, keep track of regions that have lost phone or mail service, Czerlanis reports. Collectors may be instructed not to dial telephone numbers that fall within affected area codes or block autodialers from dialing such numbers until further notice.

Keep in mind that even if your systems are back up and running and you can restore communication with the outside world after a storm; consumers may still be facing power outages, grappling with lost homes, loss of income or costly injuries.

When it comes to your business, a corporate recovery plan for use in the event of an emergency should focus on assessing the critical business functions you will need in place and protecting data and servers.

Take a step back and evaluate the people and processes that are most important to your business and identify ways to protect them.

Your clients also have expectations for business operations during emergencies, so make sure to consult them as you develop your disaster recovery and communication plans.

Read more tips on communication strategies during a disaster here and Dealing with Weather Emergencies from the FTC here. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) also has helpful tools in its  How-To Series: Protect Your Home or Business.

The SBA and IBHS will co-host a Twitter chat at 3 p.m. Eastern Sept. 18 for more information on preparing your business for a natural disaster. Follow the chat or contribute your ideas @sbagov using #SBAChat.

More information is also available in an upcoming SBA and IBHS webinar at 2 p.m. Eastern Sept. 24. Register for the webinar here (link is external).


Follow ACA International on Twitter @ACAIntl and @acacollector, Facebook and request to join our LinkedIn group for news and event updates. ACA International members are welcome to submit news items for possible publication to comm@acainternational.org. Visit our publications page for news submission guidelines and subscriptions to ACA Daily, Collector magazine and Pulse.

Advertising is available for companies wishing to promote their products or services. Be sure to visit the ACA Events Calendar on the Education and Training page to view our listing of upcoming CORE Curriculum and Hot Topic seminars featuring critical educational opportunities for your company.


Subscribe to ACA Daily NEWSROOM

Be Prepared: Understand the Risks and How to Protect Your Business in a Natural Disaster

The significant and ongoing impact of Hurricane Dorian serves as an important reminder to review your emergency preparedness plans for your home and business to ensure your family and colleagues are safe—especially during National Preparedness Month—which falls in September.

The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) is partnering with the Insurance Institute for Business and Home Safety (IBHS) to provide education on risks and assistance with business continuity plans as part of rebuilding and recovery this month, according to a news release.

Preparing in advance can go a long way toward protecting valuable assets and, when it comes to businesses, opening again as soon as possible after a storm or other disaster, according to the SBA.

The National Preparedness Month theme for the week of Sept. 8-14 is “Make a Plan to Prepare for Disasters.”

For businesses, especially in the accounts receivable management industry, ACA International’s Compliance Education Specialist Angela Czerlanis reports in the August issue of Collector magazine that it’s important to regularly review your company’s disaster response and communication plan. If your company doesn’t have a plan, rally your team and create one.

A disaster will also likely impact consumer communications.

In terms of agency operations, keep track of regions that have lost phone or mail service, Czerlanis reports. Collectors may be instructed not to dial telephone numbers that fall within affected area codes or block autodialers from dialing such numbers until further notice.

Keep in mind that even if your systems are back up and running and you can restore communication with the outside world after a storm; consumers may still be facing power outages, grappling with lost homes, loss of income or costly injuries.

When it comes to your business, a corporate recovery plan for use in the event of an emergency should focus on assessing the critical business functions you will need in place and protecting data and servers.

Take a step back and evaluate the people and processes that are most important to your business and identify ways to protect them.

Your clients also have expectations for business operations during emergencies, so make sure to consult them as you develop your disaster recovery and communication plans.

Read more tips on communication strategies during a disaster here and Dealing with Weather Emergencies from the FTC here. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) also has helpful tools in its  How-To Series: Protect Your Home or Business.

The SBA and IBHS will co-host a Twitter chat at 3 p.m. Eastern Sept. 18 for more information on preparing your business for a natural disaster. Follow the chat or contribute your ideas @sbagov using #SBAChat.

More information is also available in an upcoming SBA and IBHS webinar at 2 p.m. Eastern Sept. 24. Register for the webinar here (link is external).


Follow ACA International on Twitter @ACAIntl and @acacollector, Facebook and request to join our LinkedIn group for news and event updates. ACA International members are welcome to submit news items for possible publication to comm@acainternational.org. Visit our publications page for news submission guidelines and subscriptions to ACA Daily, Collector magazine and Pulse.

Advertising is available for companies wishing to promote their products or services. Be sure to visit the ACA Events Calendar on the Education and Training page to view our listing of upcoming CORE Curriculum and Hot Topic seminars featuring critical educational opportunities for your company.


Subscribe to ACA Daily NEWSROOM

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