Disaster can strike your business at any time. All it takes is a single major storm to cause flooding. A lightning strike can spark a fire. An earthquake can demolish your building. A tornado can close your business permanently. Most small businesses never reopen after a major disaster because they were unprepared for the realities. It’s about more than just destruction of physical property. It’s about protecting the core of what your business is and does.
Prepare for the Everyday Disasters
When you think about disasters that can affect your business, chances are good that you imagine catastrophic events – floods, earthquakes and major fires. However, more businesses are destroyed by everyday disasters than by catastrophic events. These include seemingly mundane happenings such as burst pipes, server failure or localized fires. A single pipe bursting can flood your premises, ruining inventory and destroying electronics. Inventory can be replaced (at a cost), but what happens to the data on your computers? It might be possible to recover some of it from hard drives, but that’s costly (and needless if you have the right solution in place). Prepare for everyday disasters as well as catastrophic events.
Have a Plan
First and foremost, you need a disaster plan customized to your business location. For instance, if you were located in San Francisco, you’d need a plan to deal with several different types of threats, including earthquakes. If you operated in San Antonio, you’d need a very different disaster management plan, although all plans should include:
- Identifying and assessing vulnerabilities
- Business resumption plans
- Relocation plans
- Emergency supplies
- Cloud storage/backup for essential files and information
- Insurance coverage
Protect What Matters Most
Yes, your premises are valuable. Your inventory is expensive. Your office furnishings and electronics are costly to replace. However, your business’ financial information is irreplaceable and invaluable. More small businesses are destroyed by loss of financial information than by the costs of replacing physical items damaged in a fire, flood or other disaster. Protect that sensitive information by storing it in the cloud.
What Is “The Cloud”?
Chances are good that you’ve at least heard of the cloud, although you might not be entirely sure what it is. Essentially, the cloud is a network of interconnected computers, storage systems and servers located offsite. Information stored in the cloud will be available to you 24-7, regardless of what happens to your physical workstations. Your business’ location could be completely demolished, and your financial information would still be intact, safe and accessible whenever you need it.
How Does It Work?
Cloud technology is actually relatively simple to understand. You enter information on your end (via your PC, laptop, smartphone or tablet), and that information is then stored safely in the cloud, invulnerable to physical disasters and threats. You get access to your information via the cloud interface whenever you require it, on a 24-7 basis. However, it’s more than just a non-physical hard drive. The right cloud accounting solution can actually help streamline your business, building in greater functionality, security and ease of use while streamlining your processes and enhancing accuracy.
The right cloud accounting solution will protect your business’ most valuable asset – your data. By storing it offsite, it’s invulnerable to physical threats that might completely destroy your business location, ensuring that business resumption is not only possible, but simplified (beyond the prospect of finding a new place to call home for your company). Of course, the cloud isn’t only for disaster preparedness, and can help you build efficiency and run leaner immediately, ensuring that your business realizes savings, greater accuracy and better results during day-to-day operations.
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