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February 07, 2013

Prepare Your Business for Continuity - Rain or Shine

By Paula Bernier, Executive Editor, TMC

I live in Phoenix, where the weather is almost always perfect. Yet, The Weather Channel has become one of the most commonly watched stations at my house and -- as I understand it -- at other homes and businesses across the nation.  The reason for all this is clear: Weather is increasingly capturing headlines.

The 2004 tsunami in Indonesia; Hurricane Katrina in 2005; the April 2011 spate of 385 tornados across much of the U.S.; Hurricane Irene; and last year’s Super Storm Sandy are among the big weather events of the last decade. This only-partial list goes to show that severe weather is becoming more frequent, destructive and wide-ranging.

A review of the new movie The Impossible, about the Indonesian tsunami, by the website Heavy says “back in 2004, we had no idea just how badly the ocean wanted to murder us.”

It’s funny because it’s true. Severe weather is increasingly putting us – and our businesses and properties – at risk.

Of course, we’re even more likely to be put in harm’s way -- or have our businesses’ adversely impacted -- by less dramatic or even everyday events, such as local emergencies like power outages or employees calling in sick.

In any case, in the age of always-on communications and growing uncertainty, it’s important to put business continuity plans in place so your organization can maintain operations in any event. That way, whether you’re caught in the path or a major storm, or are just one of a few impacted by a smaller event, your business can keep the lines of communication open with customers, no matter what; enable all employees to work remotely; and survive and thrive.

In their Disaster Recovery column in INTERNET TELEPHONY, Rich Tehrani and Max Schroeder note that in Connecticut, TMC’s (News - Alert) home base, almost 50 percent of the state’s electric customers were without power due to Irene alone – some, including several TMC employees, for more than a week. During this period the TMC website was operational; TMC editors and account managers were available; ITEXPO (News - Alert) West registration services were active; and all other TMC operations including e-mail, fax, online publications and TMC Channels appeared normal. “The reason this story is so important is to impress upon you the fact that business continuity is achievable if you plan properly,” noted Schroeder.

To learn more about business continuity and disaster recovery, join us for a webinar on this topic by registering here.

Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli
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