Protect your business from the unexpected
Now that you've identified the risks to your business, it's the time to start mitigating them. It's hard to predict what will happen in the future, but you can make changes now to help protect your business later.
Take out insurance
Insurance can help your business get back on its feet if things go wrong. You can take out insurance for disasters and for business interruption to cover your losses during the recovery period.
If you already have insurance, check that it covers you for potential risks. Read your product disclosure statement carefully – don't assume you're covered. Look up the definition of certain terms such as floods as they may vary among insurers. You may only be covered for some disasters if you have chosen additional cover.
Backup & secure your data
One of your key business processes should be to store your registration, financial and customer data and other important business documents in a safe location. If they are digital records, try and perform regular backups and store the backup in a secure offsite location.
When considering data protection devices read the documentation carefully for the type of data that can be stored in them. For example, some fire proof safes should not be used for digital data as the media can melt in high temperatures.
Proper data security procedures are also important to ensure you're protected against hackers and other malicious data attacks. If you're connected to a network, try to have proper up-to-date virus protection, secure networks and firewalls, and secure password protection procedures. If you're unsure how to go about this on your own, it may be necessary to talk to a security service provider.
Choose appropriate property & infrastructure
A good strategy to help protect your assets is to ensure your property and infrastructure is appropriate for your area. For some businesses this may mean security options such as alarms or video surveillance, but in other locations it may be wise to consider fire retardant or flood resistant building materials.
Ongoing maintenance is also a good idea. In fire prone areas, ensure you maintain the surrounding areas of leaf litter and grasses and clear gutters regularly.
What to do...
- Visit the Disaster Assist website for tips on dealing with a natural disaster.
- Consider legal advice to help you understand your best insurance options.
- Speak to your insurance provider to find out the details of your insurance policy.
- For detailed advice and tips on how to protect your business, visit the Department of Communications and the Arts' Stay smart online website.
- Use our Prepare your business checklist for a quick reference of all the steps you should consider when preparing for an emergency.
- For more information on business insurance, visit Insurance.
- For general information and advice on choosing insurance visit the Australian Securities and Investments Commission's MoneySmart website.