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The COVID-19 pandemic has struck every major country around the globe. To flatten the coronavirus growth curve, governments around the world have imposed partial or total lockdowns in their cities and state. These unfavorable conditions have made running businesses a challenging task.
Companies have to take a proactive and predictive role to maintain business continuity. However, a study has revealed that around 73 percent of companies are not prepared for disaster recovery.
COVID-19 is testing businesses and how well they can perform under stressful conditions. If your company hasn’t formulated any business continuity plan, then you would already have realized its importance till now. However, it is never too late, and you can still prepare for an efficient strategy to ensure the flow of critical operations with minimal to zero disruptions.
In this article, we will discuss how you can prepare a business continuity plan for your organization, which you can implement during the COVID-19 crisis and pandemics in the future.We will discuss How To Make A Business Continuity Plan
Put your employees first
While drafting a business continuity or contingency plan, you should put your employees first as their health safety is critical for your business to run essential services without any disruptions.
Ask your employees to curb the spread by following all the precautionary measures such as regularly washing their hands, covering faces with masks, etc.
Along with that, you should facilitate working from home for your employees. You should follow the best practices to implement work from home.
Communication is the most crucial aspect of running business services in a hassle-free manner. Your employees should feel connected while working from home, and it is equally essential to deliver continued customer support services.
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Identify critical services and service level agreements
The ultimate goal of a good business continuity plan is to ensure that critical services keep running during any pandemic or unfavorable situations when a significant portion of your workforce is not available.
Critical services can be defined as a set of time-bound operations or activities which may lead to business failure if not performed.
During this COVID-19 pandemic, you have to identify such critical services for your business and makeshift in policies to ensure smooth operations of these vital services.
Additionally, there might be services that you need to perform to meet the regulatory requirements.
For these types of services, you should take a legal and organizational point of view. In case there are any legal limitations, then you should include them in your action plan.
Analyze staffing requirements
The next step includes analyzing the staffing requirements for those identified critical services. Classify your employees based on various skill set levels and their dependencies on your critical operations. Maintain data that can help you at the time of the reallocation of resources across the organization.
Make an extensive plan of action
Prepare a plan of action that should have the details on how you will maintain the critical services during the coronavirus pandemic. Document the plan of work during the planning process, and it should include the following information:
Critical services that have to be maintained.
Key staff to keep running these essential business operations.
Legal requirements and service level agreements.
Communication strategy for your employees and company stakeholders.
Reporting information about service operations to top-level management.
Remote work monitoring system.
Decision-making process during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Documenting your business continuity plan
The final step in drafting your business continuity plan is to document your decisions and plan of action. This step should be done only when:
– You have identified business-critical services.
– Issues that might occur when service level agreements are changed.
– You have identified action plans for essential business services.
Testing and improvisations
Also read: Top 10 Business Intelligence Tools of 2023Wrapping Up
COVID-19 pandemic has alerted companies around the world to have business continuity plans. A well-planned business continuity plan will ensure that your business keeps running smoothly and mitigate economic losses.
You're reading How To Make A Business Continuity Plan For Covid
The app tracks exposure using encrypted keys and changing identification codes. Google Apple
The coronavirus pandemic brought the idea of contact tracing to the forefront of many people’s minds. And in a nutshell, it’s difficult to accurately keep tabs on how many people you’ve come into contact with. Now, however, Apple and Google are teaming up to try and leverage the ubiquity of smartphones to help notify users who may have been exposed to the virus while protecting their privacy.
We don’t quite know everything about the project just yet, but it will begin in mid-May when both companies plan to help public health organizations release apps that would keep track of everyone that users come into contact with over the course of a day. Then, if someone with whom you’ve been in close proximity gets a positive diagnosis, the app can alert you to take appropriate action.
The necessary technology has likely been in your phone for most of a decade. It uses Bluetooth Low Energy, which has been in iPhones since 2011 and Android phones since 2012. It’s a variation on the tech that enables devices like wireless headphones. Bluetooth Low Energy—you’ve probably seen it abbreviated BLE—is only meant to transmit small amounts of data in short bursts rather than constant streams, so it’s much easier on battery life.
The tricky part, however, is getting various phones on different platforms to talk to each other in real-time, which is where this new project from Google and Apple comes in. The companies are planning to allow iOS and Android phones to pass unique codes to one another when they’re in close range. By keeping track of these codes, the app can paint a relatively complete picture of every person with whom you’ve had contact.
Once per day, the service will check a database to see if you were close enough to anyone for exposure. If so, the app will pop up an alert with guidance about next steps and possible risk factors.
While it would initially only work between users that have downloaded and activated the app, both Apple and Google are looking towards integrating the functionality directly into their respective mobile operating systems. Even then, however, users would need to opt-in in order to use it.
The companies have released extensive documentation about the way the encryption will work in a downloadable PDF. Essentially, your phone stores encrypted codes that the app can pair with identifiers only if there’s a positive diagnosis.
One of the most important takeaways: It’s not based purely on location data, but rather phones exchanging information while in close proximity. It’s easy to envision a system based on GPS and location tracking, but that opens up more security and accuracy problems—not to mention privacy concerns—that the companies are hoping to avoid.
There are still some major question marks to go along with it, however. We know that once a user gets an official diagnosis, the app will upload 14 days of codes to a server that will trigger the notification for anyone with whom they have had contact. We still don’t quite know, however, how the app will confirm that it’s a legitimate diagnosis, but there will be a safeguard in place. Similar apps like Covid-Watch require patients to get an official code from their healthcare provider that certifies the diagnosis.
We’re also still not entirely sure which organizations will have access to the software However, just this weekend, the UK National Health Service announced that it’s onboard to integrate Google and Apple’s work into its own plans. Singapore launched an app called TraceTogether, which operated on similar technology and quickly achieved wide adoption with users.
We’ll learn more about Google and Apple’s efforts in the coming weeks, but the app’s success will be dependent upon people actually trusting and using it.
Cybersecurity is an important part of a company’s Business Continuity Plan (BCP), and policies and procedures pertaining to key technology and sensitive data protection must be considered.
The process of developing preventative and recovery measures to cope with possible cyber threats to a company or to assure process continuity in the aftermath of a cyberattack is known as business continuity planning (BCP).
In business continuity planning, it’s critical to incorporate guidelines for recognizing, controlling, and decreasing cyber threats.
The secondary purpose of BCP is to maintain operational continuity before and throughout catastrophe recovery. This facilitates cross-departmental coordination and ensures that companies have a plan to respond to any assaults promptly.
The cybersecurity team’s aims are comparable to those of the business continuity and disaster recovery teams in many aspects. As a result, these groups should collaborate to develop a comprehensive business continuity strategy that considers all parts of the company. Teams can ensure effective security for crucial areas of emphasis, such as complete data and asset management, recovery and response, and the people engaged at every step of the process by using an integrated strategy.How to Integrate Cybersecurity in Business Continuity Planning?
Now let’s check how cybersecurity can be integrated in a company’s Business Continuity Planning −Business Impact Analysis
The many parts of an organization’s cybersecurity risk management approach must be taken into consideration throughout the business impact analysis (BIA) process. Teams should include reputation, revenue loss, customer service and experiences, legal and/or regulatory requirements, and increases in operational costs as a result of a cyber-attack in their impact categories.
It’s critical to comprehend the organization’s possible long-term or residual consequences throughout. Organizations may make better-informed judgments about how to ensure business continuity in the event of a data breach or assault by laying out the entire breadth of the effect.Make a Risk Assessment for Cybersecurity
Cybersecurity risk assessments give your company a holistic view of its cybersecurity as well as those of its third- and fourth-party vendors. A cybersecurity assessment may aid security teams in determining not just their existing degree of security and the actions they’ll need to take to keep the entire network safe while developing a business continuity plan.
A business continuity evaluation should be carried out in the context of an organization’s business objectives. Organizations may acquire a better awareness of their security gaps by performing both of these things, which can be utilized to guide the BCP better.Maintaining Total Vision and Keeping an Eye on Everything at All Times
Enabling both total visibility and continuous monitoring is the most effective strategy to proactively manage risk and alleviate business continuity problems related to cybersecurity. This enables IT, security teams to have a complete picture of the organization’s cyber hygiene at any given moment, enabling more confident, well-informed decision-making and continual compliance monitoring — which is becoming increasingly important in many sectors.
Organizations should use technologies that enable complete visibility over their entire network infrastructure, including vendors and the whole supply chain. The threat landscape is rapidly evolving, and companies can no longer rely on point-in-time assessments to accurately represent their security posture.Consider Risk Management in the Supply Chain and with Third Parties
Organizations frequently disregard supply chain and third-party risk management until it poses a danger to their assets or image. This reactive strategy is no longer adequate. Supply chain risk management is more critical than ever as firms increasingly collaborate to carry out commercial activities.
Teams must consider the effect of various cybersecurity risks across the whole supply chain in order to allocate additional resources and strategies to respond properly to these threats.Implement Fundamental Controls
Basic controls such as remote working policies, mobile device management, and VPN technology should all be included from a technological standpoint. In the case of an emergency, automation may be used to ensure that key cyber security duties are still completed. To ensure appropriate steps are implemented at each level, the security team should be incorporated in Crisis and Business Continuity Planning Sessions throughout the Enterprise.Emergency Access
Enabling adequate access to third parties and incidents during a crisis should be a vital aspect of any business continuity plan.Challenges in Implementing Cyber Security in BCP
One of the biggest challenges for firms when they execute their BCP is ensuring that cyber security is adequately evaluated and that their vital systems and data are secured. Organizations may not apply the required controls on non-corporate devices in their eagerness to deploy remote working. Simultaneously, opportunistic hackers are focusing their efforts on vulnerable home workers.
The impact of lower staffing numbers in essential cyber security and IT teams exacerbates the issue. The easiest approach to prepare for these risks is to make sure they’re addressed in your business continuity plan.
It’s great having so many technologies available to us. How else would we deal with the COVID-19 pandemic and the quarantine measures!
Let’s take an inside look at what actual value these technologies bring to retailers and eateries. And where it all will eventually lead us.
Shifting to online orders is not that difficult from a technology point of view. But it requires a new business flow to be implemented. Once going online, you will no longer have such an option as:
“Let me check to see if there’s any tuna salad left.” Placing an “available” option online means you have to be able to deliver everything you offer.
So it’s all about the automated menu and inventory management systems. Moreover, coronavirus pushes restaurants into the grocery business and meal kits delivery.
Such changes force restaurants to automate the process. Good news — they don’t have tens of thousands of products to manage.
Still, business transformation is necessary. Even after the World will be back on track, the question of how to be prepared for the next crisis will remain.
Some might say that being a grocery store from around the corner is a sweet spot these days. According to research, spending on groceries has grown by up to 40%.
Instead of going to a restaurant, we put on a mask and visit the nearest open store or choose online ordering, which is another growing niche.
Anyway, a boost in sales seems to be temporary for local grocery stores as the lockdown will eventually end. Moreover, we haven’t seen many changes in the way they do business. Besides, there’s competition from delivery services. For example, Walmart brings 2-hour delivery.
According to ComCash ERP CEO, Richard Stack, many of small to medium retailers, groceries and liquor stores were using ERPs and inventory management systems long before the crisis.
But many of them were not operating online actively. After March 2023, things changed, and now the implementation of e-stores is the most in-demand service.
Getting online seems like a necessary, but not sufficient solution. It’s a bit of a different business with its own rules, marketing budgets, and technologies.
What we learned from our retail clients — they know their customer journey in detail. And apply technologies exactly to those cases where it could be most valuable to customers.
With the end of COVID-19, there’s going to be a shift in customer behavior. Perhaps, not that huge as some predict, but still enough to make an impact.
These people are visionaries who can see what customers will look for tomorrow and provide them with value and service.
Here are some use cases of how trending technologies in retail could impact customers.
The Canadian winery brought its customers an augmented experience to stand out from the crowd. Users have to point the camera at the wine label to see AR scenes and get additional information about the product.
Also, retailers use augmented reality for marketing and branding — virtual instructions, presentations, and online fitting rooms.
ChatBots are not that hard to bring onboard. There’s plenty of ready to use solutions. But let’s be realistic — chatbots can not replace real customer service (yet).
It can, however, speed up service and increase engagement. For example, a chatbot can suggest additional goods to your customers, help to navigate and perform checkouts. According to most analytics, the revenue generated with chatbots’ help is growing and will continue to grow in the future.
Clients have changed during COVID-19. Probably, many people will avoid crowded lines. Thus, SmartTab POS brings a different experience with its customer mobile application.
Since the app is integrated with the bar’s point of sales solution, it reduces interactions between bartenders and visitors. The idea is to let customers open and close their tabs, make payments through the app with zero interpersonal communication.
Machine learning application in retail is another dominant technology trend. It often sounds complicated and expensive.
And in most scenarios, it is really complicated, costly, and not needed for small or medium retailers. Still, there are cases when it could bring value. For example, you can detect and identify your visitors if you have their photos by utilizing face recognition technology.
But make sure that they are ok with it. From a technology perspective, the task to match visitors’ faces with your database is not that complicated. But it could give significant personalization to the in-store experience.
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As you might see, there’s nothing new among those priorities. It feels like this crisis will boost prior existing technology trends, not necessarily bringing new ones.Serhii Maksymenko
My career started with iOS applications development but growing interest in various fields of AI made me get into researching Machine Learning and Deep Learning solutions. I’ve been working on different Data Science projects at MobiDev, from time series forecasting to face recognition. I am a speaker at the Machine Learning conference and author of articles in online Data Science communities.
Salesforce is a customer relationship management (CRM) software that helps businesses manage their customer interactions and streamline their sales, marketing, and customer service processes. It is a cloud-based platform that offers a wide range of customizable features and tools that can be tailored to fit the specific needs of a business. In this article, we will discuss how to customize Salesforce for your business, including the steps involved, the tools available, and the best practices to follow.Define Your Business Needs
The first step in customizing Salesforce for your business is to define your needs. Identify the key areas where Salesforce can be of help, including sales, marketing, customer service, and support. Determine the features and functionality that are essential to your business and prioritize them accordingly. This will help you to narrow down your options and focus on the most critical aspects of your business.Evaluate Your Salesforce Edition
Salesforce offers a range of editions, each with different features and functionality. Evaluate your edition to ensure that it has the tools you need to customize the platform. If you find that your edition does not meet your requirements, consider upgrading to a higher edition.Customizing Salesforce
Once you have defined your business needs and evaluated your edition, it is time to start customizing Salesforce. Here are the steps involved −Create Custom Fields
Custom fields are essential to tailor Salesforce to your business needs. You can create custom fields for specific data types, such as text, number, date, and picklist. Custom fields help you to capture and track the data that is important to your business.Create Custom Objects Create Custom Page Layouts
Custom page layouts allow you to organize the data in a way that is specific to your business needs. You can add or remove fields, sections, and related lists to create a custom layout that is tailored to your business processes. Custom page layouts help you to streamline your work and increase productivity.Create Custom Reports Create Custom Dashboards Create Custom Workflows
Custom workflows automate your business processes and help you to manage your business more efficiently. You can create custom workflows for specific events, such as when a lead is created, updated, or converted. Custom workflows help you to streamline your work and increase productivity.Create Custom Email Templates
Custom email templates allow you to personalize your email communication with your customers. You can create custom email templates for specific events, such as when a lead is created, updated, or converted. Custom email templates help you to improve your customer communication and increase customer satisfaction.Best Practices
Here are some best practices to follow when customizing Salesforce −Start with the Basics
When customizing Salesforce, start with the basics, such as creating custom fields, objects, and page layouts. These are the building blocks of your Salesforce customization and will help you to create a solid foundation for your business needs.Plan Your Customization
Before you start customizing Salesforce, it is essential to have a plan in place. Identify the areas where Salesforce can be of help and prioritize them according to your business needs. This will help you to focus on the most critical aspects of your business and ensure that your customization efforts are aligned with your business goals.Test Your Customization
Once you have customized Salesforce, it is essential to test your customization thoroughly. Check that all the custom fields, objects, and workflows are working as expected. This will help you to identify any issues and ensure that your customization is functioning correctly.Train Your Users
When you customize Salesforce, it is essential to train your users on how to use the new features and functionality. Provide them with clear instructions and training materials to ensure that they can use Salesforce effectively. This will help to ensure that your customization efforts are successful and that your users are using Salesforce to its full potential.Monitor Your Customization
After you have customized Salesforce, it is essential to monitor your customization regularly. Check that it is meeting your business needs and adjust it if necessary. This will help you to ensure that your customization remains relevant and useful to your business.Conclusion
Customizing Salesforce can help you to streamline your business processes, improve customer communication, and increase productivity. By following the steps outlined in this article and adhering to the best practices, you can customize Salesforce to meet your specific business needs. Remember to start with the basics, plan your customization, test it thoroughly, train your users, and monitor your customization regularly. By doing so, you can ensure that your customization efforts are successful and that you are getting the most out of Salesforce.
Did you accidentally switch to a business account on Instagram?
If you did, you might be looking to remove a business account and switch back to a personal one.
A business account has features that a personal account does not have, and vice-versa.
The main pros of a business account are that you’ll have access to insights and the ability to display information about your business.
However, a business account cannot be private.
If you want to make your Instagram account private, you’ll have to switch to a personal account.
On the other hand, if you’re running a business, it’ll make more sense to have a business account.
In this guide, you’ll learn how to remove a business account on Instagram and switch back to a personal one in 3 easy steps (with pictures).How to remove a business account from Instagram
To remove the business account from Instagram, you need to navigate to your account settings from your profile.
From your account settings, you can switch back to a personal account by selecting “Switch to personal account”.
Once you’ve switched to a personal account, the business account will be removed from Instagram.
On the other hand, if your account is previously a creator account, select “Switch to Creator Account” instead.
Do note that if you switch to a personal or creator account from a business account, you will lose access to your insights.
If you accidentally switched to a business account, switching to a personal or creator account has no impact on your insights.
But if you’ve been using a business account for a while and you constantly check your insights, you should think twice about switching back to a personal/creator account.
Here’s how to remove a business account from Instagram:Step #1: Go to your settings
To begin with, open Instagram on your device.
Then, tap on the profile icon on the bottom navigation bar.
Once you’re on your profile, tap on the menu in the top-right corner of your profile.
After you’ve tapped on the menu, a navigation drawer will open containing several options.
Tap on the “Settings” option, which is the first option of the navigation drawer.
This will open the settings page.
You’ve successfully navigated to your settings from your profile.
In the next step, you’ll have to navigate to your account settings where you’ll be able to remove the business account and switch back to a personal/creator account.Step #2: Tap on “Account”
Once you’re on the Settings page, you’ll see multiple options.
There’s the “Follow and invite friends” setting, “Your activity”, “Notifications”, and so on.
“Follow and invite friends” allows you to invite friends via multiple platforms (e.g., WhatsApp, SMS).
“Your activity” displays your link history and your time spent on Instagram, while “Notifications” allows you to edit your notification settings.
On the bottom of the screen, you’ll see an option that says “Account”.
The “Account” option allows you to edit your account settings, which is the setting that you want to navigate to.
Tap on “Account” to go to the account settings page.
You’ve successfully navigated to your account settings.
In the last step, you’ll be able to switch back to a personal/creator account on Instagram from it.Step #3: Tap on “Switch to personal account”
Once you’re on your account settings, you’ll see multiple options on the screen—Personal information, Saved, Close friends, and more.
The “Personal information” option is where you can provide your personal information such as your email address and phone number.
The “Saved” option allows you to view your saved posts, while the “Close friends” option displays your close friends list.
As you scroll to the bottom of your account settings, you’ll see two other options in blue.
The first option is “Switch to personal account” while the second option is “Switch to Creator Account”.
Tapping on either one of these options will remove the business account.
Tap on “Switch to personal account” to switch your account back to a personal one.
However, if your account is previously a Creator Account, tap on “Switch to Creator Account” to switch your account to a creator one.
Congrats, you’ve successfully removed the business account on Instagram.What happens if you switch back to a personal account on Instagram?
When you switch back to a personal account from a business account on Instagram, you’ll immediately lose access to a wide range of features.
Here are all the features that you’ll lose access to when you switch back to a personal account from a business account on Instagram:
Real-time metrics on stories and promotions.
Address and location.
However, if you don’t own a business or if you want to make your Instagram account private, it’s best to switch back to a personal account.
This is because a business account cannot be private.Can I switch from business to personal Instagram?
Yes, you can switch from a business account to a personal one on Instagram.
If you happened to switch to a business account, you can easily switch back to a personal account by tapping on “Switch to personal account”.
If you want to revert the change, you can switch to a business account again by tapping on “Switch to business account”.
Hence, you don’t have to worry about switching your account type as it’s not permanent.Conclusion
An Instagram business account has many features that a personal account does not.
If you own a business, it’s highly recommended that you get a business account due to its wide range of features.
However, if the account is a personal one, it’s probably not a good idea to switch to a business account especially if you want to keep it private.
Business accounts cannot be private, so if you want to make your Instagram private, you have to remain as a personal account.
If you accidentally switched to a business account, you can remove it by tapping on “Switch to personal account” in your settings.
However, if you don’t mind having a public account, you can’t go wrong with switching to a business account.Further Reading
How to See The Exact Time of an Instagram Post
How to Change Your Explore Page on Instagram
7 Effective Ways to Clean Up Your Instagram Account
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