Example of ICT readiness for Business Continuity Plan

A business continuity plan (BCP) is a document that outlines how a business will continue operating during an unplanned disruption in service. It’s more comprehensive than a disaster recovery plan and contains contingencies for business processes, assets, human resources, and business partners – every aspect of the business that might be affected. Plans typically contain a checklist that includes supplies and equipment, data backups, and backup site locations. Plans can also identify plan administrators and include contact information for emergency responders, key personnel, and backup site providers. Plans may provide detailed strategies on how business operations can be maintained for both short-term and long-term outages.

A key component of a business continuity plan (BCP) is a disaster recovery plan that contains strategies for handling IT disruptions to networks, servers, personal computers and mobile devices. The plan should cover how to reestablish office productivity and enterprise software so that key business needs can be met. Manual workarounds should be outlined in the plan, so operations can continue until computer systems can be restored. There are three primary aspects to a business continuity plan for key applications and processes:

  • High availability: Provide for the capability and processes so that a business has access to applications regardless of local failures. These failures might be in the business processes, in the physical facilities or in the IT hardware or software.
  • Continuous operations: Safeguard the ability to keep things running during a disruption, as well as during planned outages such as scheduled backups or planned maintenance.
  • Disaster recovery: Establish a way to recover a data center at a different site if a disaster destroys the primary site or otherwise renders it inoperable.

Example of Business Continuity Plan

Section I: Introduction

A. How to Use This Plan

In the event of a disaster which interferes with <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s ability to conduct business from one of its offices, this plan is to be used by the responsible individuals to coordinate the business recovery of their respective areas and/or departments.  The plan is designed to contain, or provide a reference to, all of the information that might be needed at the time of business recovery.
This plan is not intended to cover the operations of <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s separately structured Emergency Response Team.
Index of Acronyms: (EOC) Emergency Operations Center – (EMT) Emergency Management Team – (ERT) Emergency Response Team – (BCP) Business Continuity Plan – (IT) Information Technology
Section I, Introduction, contains general statements about the organization of the plan.  It also establishes responsibilities for the testing (exercising), training, and maintenance activities that are necessary to guarantee the ongoing viability of the plan.
 Section II, Business Continuity Strategy, describes the strategy that the <Department Name> Department will control/implement to maintain business continuity in the event of a facility disruption.  These decisions determine the content of the action plans, and if they change at any time, the plans should be changed accordingly.
Section III, Recovery Teams, lists the Recovery Team functions, those individuals who are assigned specific responsibilities, and procedures on how each of the team members is to be notified.
Section IV, Team Procedures, determines what activities and tasks are to be taken, in what order, and by whom in order to affect the recovery.
Section V, Appendices, contains all of the other information needed to carry out the plan.  Other sections refer the reader to one or more Appendices to locate the information needed to carry out the Team Procedures steps.

B. Objectives

The objective of the Business Continuity Plan is to coordinate the recovery of critical business functions in managing and supporting the business recovery in the event of a facilities (office building) disruption or disaster.  This can include short or long-term disasters or other disruptions, such as fires, floods, earthquakes, explosions, terrorism, tornadoes, extended power interruptions, hazardous chemical spills, and other natural or man-made disasters.
A disaster is defined as any event that renders a business facility inoperable or unusable so that it interferes with the organization’s ability to deliver essential business services.
The priorities in a disaster situation are to:

  1. Ensure the safety of employees and visitors in the office buildings. (Responsibility of the ERT)
  2. Mitigate threats or limit the damage that threats can cause. (Responsibility of the ERT)
  3. Have advanced preparations to ensure that critical business functions can continue.
  4. Have documented plans and procedures to ensure the quick, effective execution of recovery strategies for critical business functions.

The <Department Name> Business Continuity Plan includes procedures for all phases of recovery as defined in the Business Continuity Strategy section of this document.

C. Scope

The Business Continuity Plan is limited in scope to recovery and business continuance from a serious disruption in activities due to the non-availability of <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s facilities.  The Business Continuity Plan includes procedures for all phases of recovery as defined in the Business Continuity Strategy of this document.  This plan is separate from <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s Disaster Recovery Plan, which focuses on the recovery of technology facilities and platforms, such as critical applications, databases, servers, or other required technology infrastructure (see Assumption #1 below).  Unless otherwise modified, this plan does not address temporary interruptions of duration less than the time frames determined to be critical to business operations. The scope of this plan is focused on localized disasters such as fires, floods, and other localized natural or man-made disasters. This plan is not intended to cover major regional or national disasters such as regional earthquakes, war, or nuclear holocaust.  However, it can provide some guidance in the event of such a large-scale disaster.

D. Assumptions

The viability of this Business Continuity Plan is based on the following assumptions:

  1. That a viable and tested IT Disaster Recovery Plan exists and will be put into operation to restore data center service at a backup site within five to seven days.
  2. That the Organization’s facilities management department has identified available space for relocation of departments which can be occupied and used normally within two to five days of a facilities emergency.
  3. That this plan has been properly maintained and updated as required.
  4. That each department has their own Business Continuity Plan.
  5. The functions and roles referenced in this plan do not have to previously exist within an organization; they can be assigned to one or more individuals as new responsibilities, or delegated to an external third party if funding for such services can be arranged and allocated.

E.    Changes to the Plan/Maintenance Responsibilities

Maintenance of the <Department Name> Business Continuity Plan is the joint responsibility of the <Department Name> management, the Facilities Management Department, and the Business Continuity Coordinator.

Department Name management is responsible for:

  1. Periodically reviewing the adequacy and appropriateness of its Business Continuity strategy.
  2. Assessing the impact on the <Department Name> Business Continuity Plan of additions or changes to existing business functions, <Department Name> procedures, equipment, and facilities requirements.
  3. Keeping recovery team personnel assignments current, taking into account promotions, transfers, and terminations.
  4. Communicating all plan changes to the Business Continuity Coordinator so that the organization’s IT master Disaster Recovery Plan can be updated.

Facilities Management Department management is responsible for:

  1. Maintaining and/or monitoring offsite office space sufficient for critical <Department Name> functions and to meet the <Department Name> facility recovery time frames.
  2. Communicating changes in the “Organization IT Disaster Recovery Plan” plan that would affect groups/departments to those groups/departments in a timely manner so they can make any necessary changes in their plan.
  3. Communicating all plan changes to the Business Continuity Coordinator so that the master plan can be updated.

The Business Continuity Coordinator is responsible for:

  • Keeping the organization’s IT Recovery Plan updated with changes made to <Department Name> facilities plans.
  • Coordinating changes among plans and communicating to <Department Name> management when other changes require them to update their plans.

F. Plan Testing Procedures and Responsibilities

<Department Name> management is responsible for ensuring the work ability of their Business Continuity Plan.  This should be periodically verified by active or passive testing.

G. Plan Training Procedures and Responsibilities

<Department Name> management is responsible for ensuring that the person who would carry out the Business Continuity Plan is sufficiently aware of the plan’s details. This may be accomplished in a number of ways including. practice exercises, participation in tests, and awareness programs conducted by the Business Continuity Coordinator.

H. Plan Distribution List

The <Department Name> Business Continuity Plan will be distributed to the following departments and/or individuals, and will be numbered in the following manner:

Plan ID NoLocationPerson Responsible

Section II: Business Continuity Strategy

A.   Introduction

This section of the <Department Name> Business Continuity Plan describes the strategy devised to maintain business continuity in the event of a facility disruption. This strategy would be invoked should the <ORGANIZATION NAME> <Department Name> primary facility somehow be damaged or inaccessible. It is assumed that each critical business function at your location also has its own group/department Business Continuity Plan, which is similar to this plan except the recovery procedures and appendices have been customized for each respective group/department based on size, and complexity.

B. Business Function Recovery Priorities

The strategy is to recover critical <Department Name> business functions at the alternate site location.  This can be possible if an offsite strategy has been put into effect by Office Services and Disaster Recovery/IT Teams to provide the recovery service. Information Systems will recover IT functions based on the critical departmental business functions and defined strategies. Business Functions by Location are listed in Appendix B (Recovery Priorities for Critical Business Functions).  “Time Critical Business Functions,” i.e., those of which are of the most critical for immediate recovery at the secondary location is:
Reference: Appendix B – Recovery Priorities for Critical Business Functions

C. Relocation Strategy and Alternate Business Site

In the event of a disaster or disruption to the office facilities, the strategy is to recover operations by relocating to an alternate business site.  The short-term strategies (for disruptions lasting two weeks or less), which have been selected, include:

Primary LocationAlternate Business Site
<Office Address>TBD

For all locations, if a long-term disruption occurs (i.e. major building destruction, etc.); the above strategies will be used in the short-term (less than two weeks).  The long-term strategy will be to acquire/lease and equip new office space in another building in the same metropolitan area.

D.   Recovery Plan Phases

The activities necessary to recover from a <ORGANIZATION NAME> facilities disaster or disruption will be divided into four phases.  These phases will follow each other sequentially in time.

1.    Disaster Occurrence

This phase begins with the occurrence of the disaster event and continues until a decision is made to activate the recovery plans.  The major activities that take place in this phase include emergency response measures, notification of management, damage assessment activities, and declaration of the disaster.

2.    Plan Activation

In this phase, the Business Continuity Plans are put into effect. This phase continues until the alternate facility is occupied, critical business functions reestablished, and computer system service restored to <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s Departments. The major activities in this phase include notification and assembly of the recovery teams, implementation of interim procedures, and relocation to the secondary facility/backup site, and re-establishment of data communications.

3. Alternate Site Operations

This phase begins after secondary facility operations are established and continues until the primary facility is restored.  The primary recovery activities during this phase are backlog reduction and alternate facility processing procedures.

4. Transition to Primary Site

This phase consists of any and all activities necessary to make the transition back to a primary facility location.

E. Vital Records Backup

All vital records for <Department Name> that would be affected by a facility’s disruption are maintained and controlled by either <Department Name> or Disaster Recovery/IT. Some of these files are periodically backed up and stored at an offsite location as part of normal <Department Name> operations. When <Department Name> requires on-site file rooms, scanning, and organization offsite storage locations, best practices advise using one near-by Records Warehouse and another secure site for vital records and data back-up.  All vital documents are typically located in files within the office complex and the most current back-up copies are in a secure off-site storage facility.

F.    Restoration of Hardcopy Files, Forms, and Supplies

In the event of a facility disruption, critical records located in the <Department Name> Department may be destroyed or inaccessible.  In this case, the last backup of critical records in the secure warehouse would be transported to the secondary facility.  The number of critical records, which would have to be reconstructed, will depend on when the last shipment of critical records to the offsite storage location occurred.<Department Name> management will arrange the frequency of rotation of critical records to the offsite storage site. The following categories of information can be exposed to loss:

  1. Any files stored on-site in file cabinets and control file rooms.
  2. Information stored on local PC hard drives.
  3. Any work in progress.
  4. Received and un-opened mail.
  5. Documents in offices, work cubes and files.
  6. Off-site records stored in the Records Warehouse (if this is not a secure, hardened facility).

G.   On-line Access to <ORGANIZATION NAME> Computer Systems

In the event of a facility disruption, the IT Disaster Recovery Plan strategy should be to assist in re-establishing connectivity to the <ORGANIZATION NAME> departments and to establish remote communications to any alternate business site location.  If the data center is affected by a disaster or disruption, the IT Disaster Recovery Plan should include recovering processing at a pre-determined alternate site. Services covered would include; phones, cellular phones, pagers, communications, and all other services required for restoring limited emergency service to the organization. In this case, data communications will be rerouted from the data processing hot or cold site to the respective alternate business site locations.

BCP Representatives – It will be necessary to contact your respective Information Technology department in order to complete this section. You should understand, and enter here, what the recovery time frame is for systems recovery (i.e. will have critical systems restored within hours or days) and what the strategy is for acquisition, installation, and connection of PC’s/terminals.  Acquisition and recovery of critical standalone personal computer capabilities should also be considered here.  You should also understand the Information Technology strategy for recovery of applications, either AS/400 based and/or those on desktop systems, which <Department Name> relies on.

H. Mail and Report Distribution

During the time that <ORGANIZATION NAME> department operations are run from the secondary facilities, output reports and forms will have to be delivered to that location.  The data center may or may not have the same print capability if the disruption affected the data center as well, so it may be necessary to prioritize printing of output. The EOC Administration Team in conjunction with designated delivery/courier services will distribute mail to all <ORGANIZATION NAME> alternate business sites.  Due to the possibility of multiple alternate business sites and the additional travel time required for mail service activities, the number of mail pickups and deliveries could possibly be decreased from the normal daily routine to once daily.  Mail pickup and delivery schedules, including overnight mail, will be established and communicated to each alternate business site.  Overnight mail/package delivery carriers should be contacted directly by a business function for items requiring pickup after the last scheduled pickup by the EOC Administration Team.  All overnight mail service vendors will be notified by the EOC Administration Team of appropriate alternate office addresses to redirect deliverables to <ORGANIZATION NAME> personnel or provide for pick up at the post office by a Team member.

Section III: Recovery Teams

A. Purpose and Objective

This section of the plan identifies who will participate in the recovery process for the <Department Name> Business Continuity Plan. The participants are organized into one or more teams.  Each team has a designated team leader and an alternate for that person.  Other team members are assigned either to specific responsibilities or as team members to carry out tasks as needed.

The information in this section is organized into several subsections.

B. Recovery Team Descriptions

This section lists the team definitions for the <Department Name> Team and gives a short explanation of the function of each team or function.

<Department Name> Recovery Team:

Responsible for oversight of the <Department Name> recovery functions.

C.   Recovery Team Assignments

This section identifies the team roles and the specific responsibilities that have been assigned to the team.

Team leader-Overall coordination of <Department Name> Recovery Team

Backup Team Leader – Duties to be assigned based on Recovery Team areas of responsibility.

Team Member – Duties to be assigned based on Recovery Team areas of responsibility

D.  Personnel Notification

This section specifies how the team members are to be notified if the plan is to be put into effect by identifying who calls whom, and in what order.  Notification can also be made by using tools such reverse 911 or other notification systems.

References:   Appendix A – Employee Telephone Lists

E. Team Contacts

This section identifies other people or organizations outside of the <Department Name> Team who might need to be contacted during the recovery process.  Their names and telephone numbers are provided.

 Reference: Appendix A – Employee Telephone Lists

F. Team Responsibilities

Departmental Recovery Teams


Business Continuity Coordinator – <Insert Name>

In the event of a disaster, the Business Continuity Coordinator is responsible for ensuring that the following activities are successfully completed:

  • Works with the <ORGANIZATION NAME> Emergency Management Team to officially declare a disaster, and start the Disaster Recovery/Business Continuation process to recover <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s business functions at an alternate site.
  • Alert <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s Senior Management that a disaster has been declared.
  • Assist in the development of an official public statement concerning the disaster. The <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s EOC Communications Team Leader is the only individual authorized to make public statements about organization affairs.
  • Monitor the progress of all Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery teams daily.
  • Present Business Continuity Plan recovery status reports to Senior Management on a daily basis.
  • Interface with appropriate work management personnel throughout the recovery process.
  • Communicate directions received from <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s Senior Management to the EOC and Departmental Business Continuity Team Leaders.
  • Provide on-going support and guidance to the Business Continuity teams and personnel.
  • Review staff availability and recommend alternate assignments, if necessary.
  • Work with <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s Senior Management to authorize the use of the alternate recovery site selected for re-deploying critical <ORGANIZATION NAME> resources.
  • Review and report critical processing schedules and backlog work progress, daily.
  • Ensure that a record of all Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery activity and expenses incurred by <ORGANIZATION NAME> is being maintained.

EOC Communications Team –

This team is responsible for providing information regarding the disaster and recovery efforts to:

  • <ORGANIZATION NAME> and organization offices Senior Management
  • Customers
  • Vendors/Contracts
  • Media
  • Regulatory Agencies
  • Other Stakeholders
  • Coordinating, submitting, and tracking any and all claims for insurance.

EOC Human Resources Team –

This team is responsible for:

  • Providing information regarding the disaster and recovery efforts to employees and families.
  • Assisting in arranging cash advances if out of area travel is required.
  • Notifying employee’s emergency contact of employee injury or fatality.
  • Ensuring the processing of all life, health, and accident insurance claims as required.
  • Coordinates temporary organization employee requests.

EOC Administration Team –

This team is responsible for:

  • Ensuring the recovery/restoration personnel has assistance with clerical tasks, errands, and other administrative activities.
  • Arranging for the availability of necessary office support services and equipment.
  • Providing a channel for authorization of expenditures for all recovery personnel.
  • Arranging travel for employees.
  • Tracking all costs related to the recovery and restoration effort.
  • Identifying and documenting when repairs can begin and obtaining cost estimates.
  • Determining where forms and supplies should be delivered, based on damage to the normal storage areas for the materials.
  • Contacting vendors to schedule specific start dates for the repairs.
  • Taking appropriate actions to safeguard equipment from further damage or deterioration.
  • Coordinating the removal, shipment, and safe storage of all furniture, documentation, supplies, and other materials as necessary.
  • Supervise all salvage and cleanup activities.
  • Coordinating required departmental relocations to the recovery sites.
  • Coordinating relocation to the permanent site after repairs are made
  • Assuring that arrangements are made for meals and temporary housing facilities, when required, for all recovery personnel.
  • Assuring order placement for consumable materials (forms, supplies, etc.) for processing based upon input from the other teams.
  • Notifying the United States Postal Service of delivery disruption.
  • Establishing internal mail delivery procedures and process.
  • Assuring that mail, and reports are redirected to the proper location as required.

Emergency Response Team –

This team is responsible for:

  • The safety of all employees.
  • Inspecting the physical structure and identifying areas that may have sustained damage.
  • Expanding on and/or revising the findings of the Preliminary Damage Assessment.
  • Providing management with damage assessment reports and recommendations.

Information Technology Recovery Team (See also Disaster Recovery Plan) –

This team is responsible for:

  • Activating the IT Technology Recovery Plan (See also Disaster Recovery Plan).
  • Managing the IT disaster response and recovery procedures.
  • Mobilizing and managing IT resources.
  • Coordinating all communications related activities, as required, with telephone & data communications, PC, LAN support personnel, and other IT related vendors.
  • Assisting, as required, in the acquisition and installation of equipment at the recovery site.
  • Ensuring that cellular telephones, and other special order equipment and supplies are delivered to teams as requested.
  • Participating in testing equipment and facilities.
  • Participating in the transfer of operations from the alternate site as required.
  • Coordinating telephone setup at the EOC and recovery site.
  • Coordinating and performing restoration or replacement of all desktop PCs, LANs, telephones, and telecommunications access at the damaged site.
  • Coordinating Disaster Recovery/IT efforts between different departments in the same or remote locations.
  • Training Disaster Recovery/IT Team Members.
  • Keeping Senior Management and the EOC Business Continuity Coordinator appraised of recovery status.

 Section IV: Recovery Procedures

A. Purpose and Objective

This section of the plan describes the specific activities and tasks that are to be carried out in the recovery process for <Department Name>. Given the Business Continuity Strategy outlined in Section II, this section transforms those strategies into a very specific set of action activities and tasks according to the recovery phase.

The Recovery Procedures are organized in the following order: recovery phase, activity within the phase, and task within the activity.

The recovery phases are described in Section II.D of the Plan.  In the Recovery Procedures document, the phases are listed in the order in which they will occur.  The description for each recovery phase begins on a new page.

Each activity is assigned to one of the recovery teams.  Each activity has a designated team member who has the primary assignment to complete the activity.  Most activities also have an alternate team member assigned.  The activities will only generally be performed in this sequence.

The finest level of detail in the Recovery Procedures is the task.  All plan activities are completed by performing one or more tasks. The tasks are numbered sequentially within each activity, and this is generally the order in which they would be performed.

B. Recovery Activities and Tasks

PHASE I:  Disaster Occurrence 

ACTIVITY:  Emergency Response and Emergency Operations Center Designation

ACTIVITY IS PERFORMED AT LOCATION:  Main Office or Emergency Operations Center



  1. After a disaster occurs, quickly assess the situation to determine whether to immediately evacuate the building or not, depending upon the nature of the disaster, the extent of damage, and the potential for additional danger.

Note: If the main office is total loss, not accessible or suitable for occupancy, the remaining activities can be performed from the Emergency Operations Center (EOC), after ensuring that all remaining tasks in each activity have been addressed.  This applies to all activities where the Main Office is the location impacted by the disaster.  The location(s) of the EOC are designated in Appendix D – Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Locations.  The EOC may be temporarily setup at any one of several optional locations, depending on the situation and accessibility of each one.  Once the Alternate site is ready for occupancy the EOC can be moved to that location.

  1. Quickly assess whether any personnel in your surrounding area are injured and need medical attention. If you are able to assist them without causing further injury to them or without putting yourself in further danger, then provide what assistance you can and also call for help.  If further danger is imminent, then immediately evacuate the building.
  2. If appropriate, evacuate the building in accordance with your building’s emergency evacuation procedures. Use the nearest stairwells.  Do not use elevators.
  3. Outside of the building meet at (XXXXXXXX XXXXXXXXXX)Do not wander around or leave the area until instructed to do so.
  4. Check in with your department manager for roll call. This is important to ensure that all employees are accounted for.

ACTIVITY:  Notification of Management


ACTIVITY IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF: <Department Name> Management Team

  1. Team leader informs the members of the <Department Name> management team and notifies the <Department Name> senior management if they have not been informed.
  2. <Department Name> personnel are notified of the disaster by following procedures as included in Section III. D. – Recovery Personnel Notification.
  3. Depending upon the time of the disaster, personnel are instructed what to do (i.e. stay at home and wait to be notified again, etc.)

ACTIVITY:  Preliminary Damage Assessment


ACTIVITY IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF:  <Department Name> Management Team


  1. Contact the Organization Emergency Response Team Leader to determine responsibilities and tasks to be performed by the <Department Name> Management Team or employees.
  2. If the Organization Emergency Response Team requests assistance in performing the Preliminary Damage Assessment, caution all personnel to avoid safety risks as follows:
  • Enter only those areas the authorities give permission to enter.
  • Ensure that all electrical power supplies are cut to any area or equipment that could posses a threat to personal safety.
  • Ensure that under no circumstances is power to be restored to computer equipment until the comprehensive damage assessment has been conducted, reviewed, and authority to restore power has been expressly given by the Emergency Management Team.
  1. Inform all team members that no alteration of facilities or equipment can take place until the Risk Management representatives (this is a function provided through the Department of Central Services as a statewide service) have made a thorough assessment of the damage and given their written agreement that repairs may begin.
  2. Instruct the Organization Emergency Response Team Leader to deliver the preliminary damage assessment status report immediately upon completion.
  3. Facilitate retrieval of items (contents of file cabinets — petty cash box, security codes, network backup tapes, control books, etc.) needed to conduct the preliminary damage assessment.
  4. Ensure that administrative support is available, as required.
  5. Arrange a meeting with the Emergency Management Team and Management Teams from other GROUPS/DEPARTMENTS in your facility (location) to review the disaster declaration recommendation that results from the preliminary damage assessment and to determine the course of action to be taken. With this group, determine the strategy to recommend to Senior Management (the Emergency Management Team Leader will be responsible for communicating this to Senior Management).

ACTIVITY: Declaration of a Disaster

ACTIVITY IS PERFORMED AT LOCATION: Main Office Location or Alternate Site/Emergency Operations Center

ACTIVITY IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF:  <Department Name> Management Team


  1. Actual declaration of a disaster is to be made by the Emergency Management Team, after consulting with senior management. The <Department Name> Management Team should wait for notification from the Emergency Management Team that a disaster has been declared and that groups/departments are to start executing their Business Continuity Plans and relocate to their Alternate Business Site Location.
  2. The person contacted verifies that the caller is someone who is authorized to do the notification.
  3. The person contacted notifies the <Department Name> Senior Management, if they have not yet been contacted.
  4. In the event the Emergency Management Team cannot be assembled or reached, the Team Leaders from each <Department Name> Management Team at the location should assemble, gather appropriate information, consult with senior management, and make the decision whether to declare the disaster.
  5. Because of the significance, disruption, and cost of declaring a disaster, appropriate facts should be gathered and considered before making the decision to declare a disaster. Individual groups/department personnel or the respective <Department Name> Management Teams should not unilaterally make a decision to declare a disaster.  This is responsibility of the Emergency Management Team.

PHASE II: Plan Activation

ACTIVITY:  Notification and Assembly of Recovery Teams and Employees

ACTIVITY IS PERFORMED AT LOCATION:  Alternate Site/Emergency Operations Center

ACTIVITY IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF<Department Name> Management Team


  1. The team leader calls each member of the management team, instructs them of what time frame to assemble at the <Department Name> Emergency Operations Center (to be decided at the time), and to bring their copies of the Plan. The location(s) of the EOC are designated in Appendix D – Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Locations.  The EOC may be temporarily setup at any one of several optional locations, depending on the situation and accessibility of each one.  Once the Alternate site is ready for occupancy the EOC can move to that location, if preferred.
  2. Review the recovery strategy and action plan with the assembled team.
  3. If necessary, adjust the management team assignments based on which members are available.
  4. The Management Team contacts critical employees and tells them to assemble at the alternate site. If the alternate site is a long distance from the primary site (i.e. out-of-state), then individuals should make their own travel arrangements to the alternate site.  Non-critical employees should be instructed to stay at home, doing what work is possible from home, until notified otherwise.
  5. In the event of a disaster that affects telecommunications service regionally, the Management Team should instruct critical employees to proceed to the alternate site even if they have not been contacted directly. Delays in waiting for direct communications can have a negative impact on <ORGANIZATION NAME>’s ability to recover vital services.

ACTIVITY:  Relocation to Alternate Site




  1. When instructed by the <Department Name> Management Team, make arrangements to commute or travel to the alternate site. Reference item #5 under Notification and Assembly Procedures for exception to this step.
  2. The <Department Name> Management Team needs to consult with the Emergency Management Team and the Organization Emergency Response Team to determine if access can be gained to the primary (damaged) site to retrieve vital records and other materials. The Organization Emergency Response Team will only allow access to the primary site if the authorities grant access.  This will be dependent upon the nature of the disaster and the extent of damage.
  3. If allowed access to the primary site to retrieve vital records and other materials, perform some pre-planning to determine what is most important to retrieve. This may be necessary since the time you may be allowed access to the primary site may be minimal.
  4. Depending on the amount of vital records and other materials you are able to retrieve from the primary site, make arrangements to transport this material to the alternate site. If the material is not too great, this could be accomplished by giving to employees to carry along with them.  If the material is a large amount, then make arrangements for transport services and/or overnight courier services.
  5. Management and critical employees travel to alternate site.

ACTIVITY:  Implementation of Interim Procedures


ACTIVITY IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF:  <Department Name> Management Team


  1. After arrival at the alternate site, map out locations that can be used for workspace. This should include unused offices and cubicles, conference rooms, training rooms, lunch/break areas, and open space in hallways or in other areas.
  2. Obtain additional tables and chairs, either from the office or from outside rental agencies to provide additional workspace. Place in any available open areas, but be cautious of not blocking exits for fire evacuation purposes.
  3. Determine flexible working schedules for staff to ensure that client and business needs are met, but also to enable effective use of space. This may require that some employee’s work staggered shifts or may need to work evening or nightshifts.
  4. Gather vital records and other materials that were retrieved from the primary site and determine appropriate storage locations, keeping in mind effectiveness of workgroups.
  5. Determine which vital records, forms, and supplies are missing. Obtain from off-site storage location or from other sources, as needed, per Appendices E & F.
  6. Developed prioritized work activities, especially if all staff members are not available.

ACTIVITY:  Establishment of Telephone Communications




  1. Contact the Organization Disaster Recovery/IT Team to determine what activities they are taking to reroute telephone communications to the alternate site. Do not directly contact the telephone company – this will be handled by the Organization Disaster Recovery/IT Team.
  2. If your alternate site is at another <ORGANIZATION NAME> office, prepare a list of phone extensions which your staff will be temporarily using and provide this list to the alternate site switchboard attendant.
  3. If your primary office phones will not be switched to the alternate site, let the Organization Disaster Recovery/IT Team know that the phones need to be transferred to the phone numbers you will be using at the alternate site.
  4. Coordinate with the Organization Communications Team regarding contacting customers to notify them of the disaster situation, how <ORGANIZATION NAME> is responding, and how you can be reached. Do not contact customers until the Organization Communications Team has given you directions.

ACTIVITY:  Restoring Data Processing and Data Communications with Primary or Secondary Backup Data Center



  1. Contact the Organization Disaster Recovery/IT Team to determine when the data center is to be recovered, if affected by the disaster. Also, discuss when data communications will be established between the primary or secondary backup data center and your alternate site.
  2. If your alternate site is another <ORGANIZATION NAME> office, determine if that site has access to the computer systems that <Department Name> uses. If so, work with local office management to determine how workstations can be shared between personnel from their groups/departments and <Department Name>.  This may involve using flexible hours or multiple shifts for your personnel.
  3. Discuss with the Organization Disaster Recovery/IT Team when and how replacement PC’s and/or terminals will be provided to you at the alternate site and when they will be connected.
  4. Discuss with the Organization Disaster Recovery/IT Team when the files from your normal PC/LAN servers and applications will be restored and how you can access those files. Also, work with other <ORGANIZATION NAME> management at your alternate site to discuss using their LAN servers.
  5. Discuss with the Organization Disaster Recovery/IT Team your normal application report distributions, such as when you can expect to receive standard computer reports and how they will be distributed to your alternate site.
  6. Communicate the IT recovery status to all <Department Name> personnel who regularly use the systems.

PHASE III: Alternate Site Operations

ACTIVITY:  Alternate Site Processing Procedures




  1. Communicate with customers regarding the disaster and re-solicit phone contacts (in conjunction with the Organization Communications Team)
  2. Acquire needed vital documents
  3. Access missing documents and files and reconstruct, if necessary
  4. Set up operation

ACTIVITY:  Manage work backlog reduction.


ACTIVITY IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF:  Alternate Site Operations Team


  1. Determine priorities for work backlogs to ensure the most important backlogged tasks are resolved first.
  2. Set an overtime schedule, if required, based on staff and system availability.
  3. Set backlog priorities, establish a backlog status reports if necessary, and communicate this to the <Department Name> supervisor.
  4. Report the backlog status to <Department Name> management on a regular basis.
  5. If backlogs appear to be very large or will take a significant time to recover, determine if temporaries could be used for certain tasks to help eliminate the backlogs. If justified, arrange for temporaries to come in.

PHASE IV: Transition to Primary Operations

ACTIVITY:  Changing Telephone and Data Communications Back to Primary Site




  1. Coordinate with the Organization Disaster Recovery/IT Team to determine when <Department Name> will be relocating back to the primary site. Verify that they have a schedule to ensure that telephone and data communications are rerouted accordingly.
  2. Discuss when and how PC’s, terminals, and printers, if brought into the alternate site, will be de-installed, moved back to the primary site and re-installed.

ACTIVITY:  Terminating Alternate Site Procedures

ACTIVITY IS PERFORMED AT LOCATION:  Alternate Site and Primary Site



  1. Determine which alternate site operating procedures will be suspended or discontinued and when.
  2. Communicate the changes in procedures to all affected staff.
  3. Determine if additional procedures are needed upon return to the primary site, such as to continue resolving work backlogs.

ACTIVITY IS PERFORMED AT LOCATION:  Alternate Site and Primary Site

ACTIVITY IS THE RESPONSIBILITY OF:  <Department Name> Management Team


  1. In conjunctions with the Emergency Management Team and the Organization Emergency Response Team, determine when <Department Name> will be scheduled for relocating back to the primary site.
  2. Communicate this schedule to all <Department Name> personnel.
  3. Inventory vital records, equipment, supplies, and other materials, which need to be transported from the alternate site to the primary site.
  4. Pack, box, and identify all materials to be transported back to the primary site.
  5. In conjunction with the Organization Administration Team, make arrangement for a moving company or courier service to transport the boxes back to the primary site.

Section V: Appendices

Appendix A – Employee Telephone Lists 

Office Phone #Home Phone #Cellular/
Pager #
EmailTime CalledArrival TimeComment
 Fire, Police, Emergency        

*     Indicates Team Leader
**    Indicates Alternate Team Leader

Appendix B – Recovery Priorities for Critical Business Functions

DepartmentPrioritiesMaximum  AllowableDowntime
<Department Name>1-2 Days3-5 days1-2 weeks> 2 weeks

 Appendix C – Alternate Site Recovery Resource Requirements

General Requirements

#DescriptionCurrent   NumberBCP   NumberComments
1.Number of people   
2.Square footage needed   
3.Power Outlets 110V  
4.Power Outlets 220V   
6.Telephone lines   
13.Microfiche Viewers   
14.File Cabinets (specify type)  
15.Other – Please attach list   

Technical Requirements

#DescriptionCurrent   NumberBCP   NumberComments
1.Telephone Lines (regular)   
2.Telephone Lines (800 or special)   
3.Single Line Telephone Sets   
4.Other Type Telephone Sets   TWO LINE   
5.Stand-alone FAX Machines   
7.LAN/WAN Connections   
8.Printers  – LAN   
9.Printers – Direct attach to PC   
10.PC Connectivity outside <ORGANIZATION NAME>* (Internet)   
11Other Computers   
12.Fax – Stand alone   
13.Other – Please attach  list   

Appendix D – Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Locations

Disaster Affecting Which Area/Building                        EOC Location

<ORGANIZATION NAME> Home Community City

Recovery Locations and Travel Directions

Alternate Sites

Critical FunctionAlternate Site
Desktop and Personnel 
EOC Emergency Management Team 

NOTE – Provide directions to all alternate sites. Include address and phone number of site.  Include Maps and Floor Plans.

Appendix E – Vital Records

DescriptionPrimary Location of RecordsAlternate (Backup) Location of RecordsOther Sources to Obtain Records
Settlement AgreementsDepartment File CabinetsVaultScanned images on Network drive/Other Parties
Litigation FilesDepartment File RoomScanned Images of pleadings on Network driveOutside Counsel/Courts

 Appendix F – Forms and Supplies

Form/Supply Name/DescriptionPrimary Locations Where StoredAlternate Sources to Obtain Form/SupplyVendor’s Name/Phone
No special form or supplies other than standard office supplies.   

Appendix G – Vendor Lists

Vendor NameGoods/Service ProvidedContact NameAddressPhone #
Master Service Agreements and other contractors  – lists available on network Master Service Agreement and Insurance databases    

Appendix H – Desktop Computer Configurations

Description of Desktop:  Dell, etc                                                                                      

Used By: All <Department Name> Employees                                                                    

Business Activity Supported:                                                                                             

Connected to Which LAN’s:                                                                                               

Used for Host Access (Which Applications): network printing                                              

Special Features, Boards, Memory Size, Etc.: over 20 Gigs HD, over 128MB Memory _____

Over 850 MHz Processor(s)                                                                                               

Ethernet Net Cards, Fax/Modems                                                                                      

Proprietary Software required (indicate release number, version and/or level, as applicable:  

The IT Department maintains records on all desktop systems.                                         

 Appendix I – Computer System Reports

  Report Name  Report DescriptionSystem Produced FromAlternate Sources of Report or Information
No special computer reports required.   

Appendix J – Critical Software Resources

Software ApplicationPublisher or VendorPlatformRecovery Criticality

 Appendix K – Alternate Site Transportation Information

Employees will be notified (by team members), if a disaster is declared, as to the location and when to report.  Since recovery site is local, transportation to the work location is up to the employee unless directed otherwise.  Directions will be supplied at the time of notification, if necessary.

Appendix L – Alternate Site Accommodations Information

Should alternate site accommodations be required team members will be notified.  Employees will be contacted (by team members), if a disaster is declared, as to the location and where to go.  Since accommodations are local, transportation to the work location is up to the employee unless directed otherwise.  Directions will be supplied at the time of notification, if necessary.

Appendix M – Severity Impact Assessments

<Department Name>

  Severity ofImpact
Least ——>to——>Greatest
Impact Area12345Comments
1Cash Flow Interruption
2Inoperative Billing Systems
3Inoperative Financial Controls
4Loss of Customers
5Financial Reporting (Banks, IRS, etc.)
6Increases in Liability
7Loss of Public Image
8<Department Name> and Regulatory Violations
9Contractual Violations
10Vendor Liabilities & Relations
11Customer Liability & Relations
12Effect on Employee Morale
13Staff Resignations

Appendix N – <ORGANIZATION NAME> Business Impact Assessment

Department or Function:<ORGANIZATION NAME>Number of Employees in HOME COMMUNITY :Primary Business Function:
What’s at Stake:  $ Millions Plus
Able to work from home if access to e-mail and system is available through dial-up access. Will need records and files as well.
Unable to work remotely if access to records and files is restricted.
Loss Impact
Our department would not be able to perform >95% of its work without access to our computers or work areas. It would take time and effort to recreate the contracts and other information (to the extent they can be recreated) before we could work on them.
Maximum Allowable Downtime:> 24 – 48 Hours

Appendix O – Recovery Tasks List

Recovery Activation Date: ________

Task No.Task DescriptionEstimated TimeActual TimeAssigned ToAssigned TimeCompleted TimeComments
10Receive Communication on emergency Situation      
20Identify recovery site      
30Retrieve Business Continuity Plans      
40Notify department members identified in Appendix A      
50Retrieval of  department Vital Records      
60Oversee delivery and placement of office equipment.      
70Oversee delivery and placement of office supplies.      

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