No Facilities Manager wants to think about what may happen when an emergency arises. Unfortunately, failure to plan and understand the nuances of emergency facilities management will only result in added costs, more disruptions, and even a risk for loss of life. Emergency management complexity, including the severity and frequency of major storms, says Climate.Gov, is increasing at an alarming rate, and Facility Managers need to understand why.
What’s Wrong with Today’s Emergency Management?
Today's emergency management practices were designed to fulfill the essential business needs of a traditional facility. In the past, it was common to shut down operations throughout recovery and avoid allowing consumers into your facility. Unfortunately, the world of e-commerce and online experiences means any second lost due to a failure to plan for an emergency could have a disastrous effect on overall profitability. It only takes one negative interaction to tarnish your brand image and result in your loyal customers leaving you for Amazon or another major competitor.
Optimal Planning Is Essential to Emergency Management
The only way to understand the problem with emergency management complexity is optimal planning. Optimal planning gives Facilities Managers access to more information about the risk of emergencies, how to respond to emergencies, the steps necessary to correct issues or damage caused by crises, and what is needed to reopen and eliminate risks to consumers successfully, explains Ready.Gov. Unfortunately, Mother Nature always has another plan, and as evidenced in 2017, responding to Black Swan weather events is a significant area where emergency management complexities have grown beyond current capabilities. When a major emergency occurs, every business in your area will be striving for more resources and ways to recover faster. As a result, companies that do not plan for emergencies and have established contracts and processes in place to handle recovery will be the last on the list service vendors.
How to Plan for Increasing Emergency Management Complexity
Facilities Managers should follow these steps to plan for increasing emergency management complexity:
- Recognize the threat.
- Look beyond the common emergencies.
- Remember the threat of severe weather.
- Learn from past experiences, even in areas far from home.
- Work with technology to ensure safety and security.
- Back up data to the cloud.
- Increase the strength of your facility assets, including windows, entryways and emergency exits.
- Avoid waiting until the last minute to enact changes.
- Hold drills with staff to improve response.
- Consider working with a third-party servicer to achieve faster, optimal disaster recovery.
Know What to Expect, and Act Now to Minimize Disruptions
An ounce of prevention is truly worth a pound of treatment when it comes to the increasing emergency management complexities in today’s world. Facilities Managers must begin the process of implementing protocols and plans to reduce disruptions, understand proactive emergencies and respond when such issues arise.