Godlan knows that in today’s highly connected IT world, prolonged downtime can be a manufacturing company’s biggest nightmare. Whether the downtime results from a natural disaster, or even human error, the impact of an outage can ripple throughout every aspect of your business. This ripple effect can threaten operations, resulting in accruing high costs, creating negative customer experiences – and even putting the very reputation of your business at stake.
Disaster recovery was once a question of “What will it cost me to recover and rebuild?” Now, it has evolved into, “What is it going to cost me if I CANNOT recover my systems?” This is followed quickly by the question of, “What is the true cost of this disruption to my business and my customers?”
Godlan offers multiple services that help to ensure that you are covered by whatever disaster may strike. Whether it is upgrading your ERP software to CloudSuite Industrial SyteLine SaaS, hosting as a service, managed IT services, managed security services, or disaster recovery as a service, Godlan ensures that you can focus on growing your business and gaining the competitive edge while we handle the routine and mundane.
Godlan has put together a free PDF Manufacturing Disaster Recovery Plan Template that can help you prepare for the unexpected. Following is an outline of the organizational steps you need to take, both before and after an emergency.
9-Point Manufacturing Disaster Recovery Plan
(free template – PDF downloads upon completion of the form at the bottom)
1) Mission-Critical Personnel
In a disaster, team members and managers will play multiple roles. This section of your plan should identify all the stakeholders, executives, and other personnel who will need to make quick decisions in an emergency.
2) Critical Personnel Responsibilities
Now that you have your list of critical personnel, take the time to outline each person’s responsibilities and the course of action they would ideally need to take. For example, in an IT disaster, consider who needs to have access to your secure systems, or who will be able to authorize that access if existing IT managers are unavailable.
3) Urgent Medical Response
If you believe in putting your employees first, then a concrete plan for how you will respond to a potentially life-threatening disaster is critical. In a severe tornado or fire, for example, your workers could be seriously injured on the job. Consider what kind of care could be provided on-site, where you will keep emergency medical supplies and how to access them, or where injured employees will be taken to receive the urgent care they may need.
4) Contingency Operations & Backup Locations
If your entire manufacturing facility were rendered unusable, what would you do? Is there an opportunity for production to be resumed at another location? If so, where and how quickly could you implement this plan? Be specific. While no one can absolutely prepare with perfection for every imaginable scenario, a good outline detailing exactly what will need to happen to restore operations in a variety of emergency scenarios could make all of the difference.
5) IT Continuity
The manufacturing industry of today is heavily reliant on data and technology. You must think beyond the power going out and consider how a true natural disaster impacting your IT could completely devastate and disrupt your operations. Be sure to outline your backup processes and the technologies needed to swiftly restore data, networks, and physical IT infrastructure.
6) Equipment Asset Management
One of the biggest key components of any manufacturing disaster recovery plan is equipment and asset management. It is imperative that you have up-to-date inventories of all corporate equipment and assets. This can include everything from the machines on your factory floor, to the chairs that your office employees sit on. In addition to these complete inventory lists, ensure that you identify the assets that are essential to keep operations running. Think about how you will replace them if they are suddenly destroyed or inaccessible.
7) Communication Strategy & Methods
When traditional lines of communication are down, what will you do? How will you communicate with your employees in the critical moments after a disaster strikes? Important decisions will need to be made swiftly. In this section, you will outline how personnel will communicate when traditional means of communication are out of order.
8) Document Storage
In addition to digital data, you must plan for how you will protect and restore essential paper files. Manufacturing companies will have important documents in boxes and file cabinets. If your files and documents are destroyed in a flood or a fire, what will you do? It is imperative to outline your document backup methods NOW to significantly limit the cost and damage of having to reproduce those files after a disaster.
9) Plan Reevaluation Schedule & Point Persons
Business continuity plans must be reviewed periodically and revised often to ensure accuracy of the information contained within them. In this section, identify who will be tasked with writing and reevaluating the plan, and how often this reevaluation should occur. Coordination among the departments of your company is critical. Consider assigning team members from each department to help produce the required information so that your Manufacturing Disaster Recovery Plan will be beneficial if and when you ever need it.