Business Continuity - What do you do?


#1

Dear all,

I have a few hard questions for you I’m afraid. Sorry!

  1. What you have all put in place in case you have an accident? … as in: how will your clients be informed that something has happened?

  2. What arrangements have you made for work to carry on without you?

  3. If you have a designated person to contact your clients … what procedures are in place if you cannot inform your that something has happened (say you are unconscious for a few days for instance - if not worse)?

  4. What assurances do you give your clients that work will carry on for them? Do you have a process for someone to take on the work on your behalf?

  5. And how does it work all work with GDPR anyway?

Forgive me but I am still battling with my T&Cs (cheekily published my website already though, as I have a networking event on Friday and wanted it to be live :worried:) and suddenly realised that as a sole trader, this is really hard to ensure!

I have looked at the FSB page on this, but Business Continuity comes under their insurance support scheme and before I scheduled a meeting with them, I though it would be good to have an understanding of what you all do first.

I looked at as many T&Cs as I could find, but I could not find this referenced on them … is that because VAs don’t need them?

I remember reading in one post that some of you have a safe in your office with all your up-to date passwords and gave the combination to your spouses … so can I ask what instructions you have given them?

I feel bad leaving such an onerous task to friends and family … especially if they are really worried about me … but I would like to be able to inform my clients as soon as possible if something major happened to me. And also some reassurance that they will not be left in a compromised position because of it … so I’m looking for your pearls of wisdom on the matter.

Again, sorry for the unhappy topic :disappointed: and thanks :slight_smile:


#2

We usually have a second in command who swings into action when I’m indisposed… I have an offsite fire safe with all the banking stuff/passwords etc. and those could be given to the 2nd in command if I’m seriously ill, although it would run fine for a few weeks without me.

I hasten to add I hadn’t printed all this out until someone at the Northern VA Collaboration pointed out to me a couple of years ago that if my computer goes kaput and I somehow lose access to the online backups, I need access to the cyber insurance document at very least!!!

The chances of you being run over by a bus are slim though, so in most cases, you would be able to struggle on or ask clients to be patient if you have a bad dose of flu etc.

In reality business continuity is a process rather than a tickbox… It’s of no use unless your document contains all processes detailed coherently and is up to date. Or the VA covering is used to how you work on a regular basis.


#3

What a great subject. This is an area I haven’t considered, but reading through your concerns, it is an area I should really invest time in. At the moment I would rely on my partner to contact my clients.

Definitely food for thought smile.

Kirstin


#4

Some really great thoughts and pointers here. Worth adding in here too that in some circumstances, this would be where the Force Majeure clause comes in to play. Whilst that of course wouldn’t provide the needed resource if you were out of action, it would cover you contractually.


#5

Great post and one i have thought about recently! I am going to speak to a fellow VA that I know really well and do some associate work for and see if she wants to set up some form of agreement, whereby if either of us is ill, or worse (!!) our respective husbands will basically take our laptops to the other and they will either pick up the work or contact the clients to explain. havent really thought how it would work more than that!!


#6

Really great if you could get something like that going. Good luck!