Typically working from the comfort of their own homes or other off-site locations, remote staff are dispersed geographically and lack access to conventional workplace amenities. Because of this, disaster preparation and response plans for distributed teams are crucial. Knowing where in the world your remote staff are located helps to manage disasters. If your teams are in flood prone areas, or near volcanoes or on tectonic plate lines and could suffer an earthquake at any time, you need to know what the common issues are so you can plan and be prepared.
Here are three tips to keep in mind when preparing a remote team for a disaster:
Tip 1. Organise your means of contact. Remote teams must have a strategy in place for how they would communicate with one another. A single individual must be appointed to serve as the main source of information between the team members and the outside world. A backup plan is also a must in case the primary mode of communication is interrupted. An alternate phone line, emergency SMS system, or a cloud-based communication tool like Conxhub with capabilities to facilitate distant team collaboration, call routing, virtual numbers, and call recording may increase remote team disaster preparation and increase safety.
Tip 2. Create a strategy for working remotely. It may be impossible for distant personnel to maintain regular operations after a natural disaster. Teams that rely on remote workers must have a strategy in place for how they will continue to function in the event of an emergency. Every member of the team has to know what they’re responsible for right now, and what they can put on hold until things calm down. In a time of crisis, this will allow the team to keep functioning at a high level.
Tip 3. Drill and train often. Preparing for a disaster is not a one-and-done deal. To guarantee that its members are ready to respond to an emergency, remote teams should periodically undertake exercises and training. Communication drills, role-playing hypotheticals, and emergency drills are all examples of what this entails.