Five Steps to Develop Your Business Preparedness Program


Disasters can strike anytime, anywhere. Business owners in California need to be able to identify risks and hazards before, during, and after a disaster – regardless of magnitude.

Business owners wanting to learn more from disaster caused natural hazards can go to the  MyHazards website for more information.

​​Five steps to develop your business preparedness program:

Program Management

    • Organize, develop, and administer your preparedness program
    • Identify regulations that establish minimum requirements for your program



    • Write a preparedness plan addressing the following:
      • Resource management: Resources needed for responding to emergencies, continuing business operations, and communicating during and after an incident should be identified and assessed.
      • Emergency response: Plans to protect people, property and the environment should be developed. Plans should include evacuation, sheltering in place and lockdown as well as plans for other types of threats identified during the risk assessment.
      • Crisis communications: A plan should be established to communicate with employees, customers, the news media, and stakeholders.
      • Business continuity: A business continuity plan that includes recovery strategies to overcome the disruption of business should be developed.
      • Information technology: A plan to recover computer hardware, connectivity, and electronic data to support critical business processes should be developed.
      • Employee assistance: The business preparedness plan should encourage employees and their families to develop family preparedness plans. Plans should also be developed to support the needs of employees following an incident.
      • Incident management: An incident management system is needed to define responsibilities and coordinate activities before, during and following an incident.
      • Training: Persons with a defined role in the preparedness program should be trained to do their assigned tasks. All employees should be trained so they can take appropriate protective actions during an emergency.

Testing and Exercises

    • Test and evaluate your plan
    • Define different types of exercises
    • Learn how to conduct exercises
    • Use exercise results to evaluate the effectiveness of the plan

Program Improvement

    • Identify when the preparedness program needs to be reviewed
    • Discover methods to evaluate the preparedness program
    • Utilize the review to make necessary changes and plan improvements

To learn more on preparing businesses for a disaster, visit: