Tips in an emergency
To help you manage your business during times of crisis, we have put together the top 10 tips in an emergency.
1. Think safety first
It's important to listen to the advice of your local authority if you need to evacuate. Be aware that you may not have access to services such as electricity and water after receiving an evacuation order.
For emergency warnings in your area, find resources in your state or territory.
2. Know your emergency risks
To help you prepare for any immediate emergency risks, keep in touch with the government by using social media channels and related websites, such as:
3. Fire and flood proof your storage
If your business location is prone to natural disasters, it may be worth investing in a weather proof safe for all your important documents.
If possible, scan your documents digitally and store them on a handy USB drive for convenience. You could also consider hiring a space in a safer location to store your important documents.
- Read more about how to backup and secure your data.
4. Assess the impact on your business
If a natural disaster impacts your business, the Business recovery checklist can help you to:
- assess the full impact on your business
- prioritise your efforts in your business recovery
- understand what you need to consider before you can return to business as usual.
5. Stay, pause or exit?
Once you have assessed the impact on your business, you'll have to consider what it will take to recover your business.
If you're not sure your business can recover, it's a good idea to seek advice and support:
- Speak to your accountant or business adviser.
- Use Advisory Services to find a business adviser near you.
- Contact your nearest Business Enterprise Centre or Australian Small Business Advisory Services program provider.
If there is no option but to exit your business, our information on exiting can help you understand what you need to do.
6. Re-establish your business
It's a good idea to start a database of customers when you first begin your business. Make sure you comply with privacy regulations by keeping their data secure and letting them know what you'll use it for.
You can use the database to let your customers know when you have recovered from emergencies.
7. Help your employees
If a natural disaster affects your business, it is likely to impact on your employees too.
Do you need to pay your employees when they're not working due to severe weather? For useful advice, read the Fair Work Ombudsman's Pay during stand down & severe weather.
You and your employees can get help from personal counselling services, and may be eligible for the Australian Government's Disaster Recovery Allowance (DRA). The DRA provides short-term income support to people with a demonstrated loss of income as a direct result of a major disaster.
8. Seek advice to boost your recovery
A range of small business services can advise you on business recovery:
- Find your nearest business adviser by using our Advisory Services search tool.
- Find your nearest Business Enterprise Centre or Australian Small Business Advisory Services program provider.
- Get tips on how to recover from disasters, as well as current information on disaster recovery assistance by visiting the Disaster Assist website.
- Contact your industry association for specific information, or your local council to see if there are seminars, workshops or networking events for local businesses.
9. Celebrate your recovery
Once your business recovers from an emergency, it is important to re-connect with your customers. This could be a perfect opportunity promote your small business to your community.
Download the free MarketMyBiz tablet application to create your marketing plan on the go. Don't have a tablet? Our marketing plan template and guide is also available to download and complete offline.
10. Engage with your community
If your business is able to assist your local community following an emergency, consider helping your local schools, charities and community centres. This is a great way to engage with your community while creating exposure for your small business.