"Managers are increasingly coming to recognise that disaster recovery planning is an essential function in the management of the business. This is not surprising. Studies have shown that about 80 percent of companies which do not have a workable recovery plan will fail within one year of suffering a major disaster."

Source: Business as usual: Maximising business resilience to terrorist bombings, Home Office, UK, 1999.

Develop a recovery plan

Once you've taken full stock of the impact the crisis has had on your business, you're in a better place to reopen or restore your business to normal operating levels or explore other options.

The next step is to develop a recovery plan.

A recovery plan gives you a chance to consider how you'll get your business back on track and will help you shorten your recovery time and minimise losses.

It should state what the business needs to do to reopen or restore operations, such as processes or resources that are critical to reopening along with your recovery objectives. The plan should include actions to achieve recovery objectives, a realistic timeframe and those responsible for carrying out the planned actions.

Such a plan, together with cash flow forecasts and profit and loss forecasts will help you determine if it's viable to reopen and how the business will finance the reopening. If it's difficult to finance the planned reopening, the plan may have to be modified or you may have to consider exiting your business.

Download and complete the recovery plan template: