Research Paper: Disaster Planning a Review

Pages: 10 (2564 words)  ·  Bibliography Sources: 7  ·  Level: Doctorate  ·  Topic: Business - Management  ·  Buy This Paper

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[. . .] This is important, for finances are important to any organization that may see itself in a precarious position. But this plan also states that it aims to not just prevent the school from undergoing financial problems should a crisis arise, but also aims to enable it to continue serving its students, staff, faculty and visitors properly, as well as mitigate any disruptions that may arise from such as crisis or disaster. Lastly, the plan aims to protect the university's reputation, which goes hand in hand with protecting financial interests, and this is important to stress.

Just as any good contingency plan, the university expands upon its aims and structures its plan according to importance. The result is a comprehensive paper that is made up of six important headings and various subheadings. These include, in order:

Business Impact Analysis

Risk Analysis

Risk Assessment

Plan Components

Strategy

Prevention Measure

Mitigation Measures

Emergency Response

Unit Continuity and Succession of Leadership

Emergency Communications

Resource Management and Logistics

Mutual Aid (Internal and External)

Training and Awareness

Exercise and Testing[footnoteRef:7] [7: All points taken from Powers, p4. ]

Having such a clear and detailed structure in place, complete with specific descriptions as to how to function in the case of a disaster, as well as post-crisis, is very useful. As can be seen from the plan to be implemented above, such a program can help an organization save itself in the front of loss that may occur from an unexpected event.

Another document that builds upon such strategies and that stresses the importance of crisis management is found to examine a governmental organization. The structure of this crisis prevention plan is quite different, as it concerns a public institution, whereas some of the plans detailed here may be related to private enterprises. Within a public institution, for transparency reasons, a crisis prevention and recovery plan will almost always be posted for anyone to see. In a private setting, this may not be the case, as shareholders may not want all to know what could be done in the event of a disaster. Nonetheless, the plan described here involves a clear network of individuals that would "take over" in the case of a disaster. The thing that is most stressed is the fact that individuals must be able to undertake whatever roles they have been given, with success. In order to do this they must, of course, know and understand their roles, which is vital. For this purpose, this particular literature builds a flow chart that shows a clear structure in an eventual crisis.[footnoteRef:8] This is useful both for the individuals within the company, but also for the public, who must be informed of the smooth functioning of a governmental organization, especially in times of crisis. [8: Business Continuity Plan. 2012. Ready.gov. Retrieved January 24, from . ]

The FEMA section, which was the first written above, and which addressed the specific ways in which the government sought to mitigate disasters is important here, for it shows how the government could act in cases such as 9/11 or Katrina. Though not always successful in its endeavors, especially in the latter case mentioned above, governmental organizations always step in. Internationally, such organizations are replaced by things like the UNDP, which strive to foresee disasters on an even larger scale, especially those provoked by violence. Yet both natural and violence-related crises may happen at any time in the internal arena, and business are almost always affected by these, so it is ever more important in such cases to be prepared, and the FEMA principles related in the first section are very much upheld in the case of the United Nations.

To go back to the private sector and how it functions, the next two pieces of literature to be examined will relate to organizational preparedness, though do not give specific business examples. The first article, which examines the basics of business continuity, states that "disaster recovery and business continuity planning are processes that help organizations prepare for disruptive events -- whether those event might include a hurricane or simply a power outage caused by a backhoe in the parking lot."[footnoteRef:9] One other important facet that this article includes expands on the things that such plans must include, and states that all such plans must encompass, above all, means of communications, so employees know where to go and what to utilize to continue doing their jobs. The author further mentions that "for some businesses, issues such as supply chain logistics are most crucial and are the focus on the plan. For others, information technology may play a more pivotal role, and the BC/DR plan may have more of a focus on systems recovery []."[footnoteRef:10] [9: Slater, D. 2011. Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Planning: The Basics. Business Continuity. Retrieved January 24, from . ] [10: Slater, p1. ]

The next study focuses on the importance of communication as mentioned above as well, but stresses the role of ethics in organization crisis management, which according to the piece, has received limited attention. Furthermore, the study aims to not only fill the gap aforementioned, but also prove a relevance for contingency plans, especially in today's ever-changing times, and make note of the fact that signal detection and uptake in organizational prevention is vital. The study also highlights implications for prevention, and takes in consideration such disasters as the explosion of the space shuttle Challenger in order to best see how further research and detail could prevent such disasters from happening.[footnoteRef:11] [11: Simola, S. 2005. Concepts of Care in Organizational Crisis Prevention. Journal of Business Ethics 62(4), pp. 341-353. ]

Conclusions

This paper has focused on analyzing what today's brightest minds say about disaster planning both within nations and within companies, and what strategies are best to avoid failure, for a business, when a crisis does happen. This literature review, though comprehensive, has shown some gaps, especially in discussing potential ways in which to handle today's most important threats, such as terrorism, and ways in which to move forward quickly after a disaster has taken place. Furthermore, there is little literature showing how businesses can best adapt to these circumstances, as they are relatively novel, especially given the uniqueness of many businesses. It is thus recommended that further research be undertaken with specific case studies in mind. [END OF PREVIEW]

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Disaster Planning a Review.  (2012, January 24).  Retrieved April 20, 2019, from https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/disaster-planning-review/7498018

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"Disaster Planning a Review."  Essaytown.com.  January 24, 2012.  Accessed April 20, 2019.
https://www.essaytown.com/subjects/paper/disaster-planning-review/7498018.