Preparing for the Unexpected: Your Contingency Plan

Your contingency plan helps prepare for the unexpected. This course of action determines the steps to take in case a significant situation or event occurs.

A contingency plan is an alternative action plan if the expected results do not develop. This plan is essential for risk management, incident response, disaster recovery, and business continuity.

Contingency planning addresses cybersecurity, critical infrastructure, crisis communications, and emergency response issues. This planning supports the continuity of business operations for organizational resilience.

Learn how to prepare for the unexpected by developing a contingency plan.

Contingency Plan Elements

Your contingency plan should include the following characteristics:

  • Risk assessment: Examine internal and external risks, vulnerabilities, and threats to the company and its technology infrastructure. Emphasize the likelihood of recurrence, the severity and potential impact on the organization, and the financial and operational effects.
  • Awareness training: Share information about your contingency plan with employees, company leaders, and other stakeholders.
  • Review and auditing: Regularly examine your contingency plan. Check for consistency with current business and technology practices and the accuracy of contact information. Ensure alignment with relevant controls, standards, and regulations.
  • Continuous improvement: Ensure your contingency plan meets your business’s operational needs.

Contingency Plan Examples

Your contingency plan should focus on one part of your business operations. For instance, your plan might detail the steps to back up critical data. Or, your plan could clarify the remote-work provisions in case your office becomes inaccessible.

Navigating the coronavirus pandemic lockdowns demonstrated the importance of having contingency plans for different parts of an organization. Companies with effective plans could react faster and continue operations than companies without these plans.

Tips to Create a Contingency Plan

You can use these tips as a framework to develop your contingency plan:

  • Develop a contingency planning policy statement. Provide the outline and authorization to create a contingency plan.
  • Create a business impact analysis. Identify and prioritize the systems required for ongoing business functions.
  • List the preventative controls. Include proactive measures to prevent system disruptions and outages.
  • Create contingency strategies. Develop thorough strategies to ensure efficient system recovery after a disruption.
  • Develop an action plan. Include the procedures and guidance to handle a damaged or unavailable system.
  • Detail testing and training exercises. Validate recovery capabilities. Prepare recovery staff for plan activation. Identify and fill planning gaps.
  • Create contingency plan maintenance. Regularly update your plan to stay current with system enhancements and organizational changes.

Develop a Contingency Plan for Your Staffing Needs

Include HireCall in your contingency plan to fill your staffing needs. Learn more today.