Where do you stand?

How does your organization's current plan measure up? Has your organization developed a robust emergency plan, or are you just getting started? Regardless of where you are in the planning process, complete the following steps.

Build a Team

    1. The Chief Executive of your organization should appoint someone to lead this emergency planning effort (You may have already been appointed to fill this role!)
    2. Establish an Emergency Planning Committee:
      • You may already have a Safety Committee with similar membership that could be utilized for this effort. According to the New Hampshire Department of Labor, "Effective January 1, 2013, employers with 15 or more employees are required to have a Joint Loss Management Committee and a Written Safety Program."
        • The committee should be composed of equal numbers of employer and employee representatives. Employee representatives shall be selected by the employees. After a written safety program has been filed, the program shall be reviewed and updated by the employer at least every 2 years.
      • The committee should be diverse, and include a representative from each of your departments, business lines, and support organizations (human resources, facilities, security, leadership, operations, front reception, finance, transportation, etc.). Ready.gov Business has a great worksheet that can help you identify members for this committee.
    3. Clearly identify roles and responsibilities of the committee, including plan review and drill schedules, staff training, and activities and duties.

Complete an Assessment

Now that you've built a team to work with, you will conduct a simple evaluation to get you thinking about your organization's current activities towards becoming more resilient.

Complete the American Red Cross Ready Rating Assessment. It is strongly recommended that you complete the ReadyAdvance Assessment. You can access a blank copy of this assessment here.

    • Completing the assessment will enable you to assess how prepared your organization is. By completing the assessment on the Ready Rating website, a "Next Steps Report" will be generated providing you with additional resources to improve your rating. An example of this "Next Steps Report" can be found here.
    • Request that an emergency preparedness and public safety professional assist you as you complete this assessment. They know what to look for, and you can start to develop a working relationship between your organization and the city's emergency responders. This will also be a great way for the group to know you are taking important steps towards becoming more resilient. Contact our group of Nashua public safety partners here.

Create a Network

Establish connections with outside entities, including:

These are the responders and public safety officials that will be your resources throughout your planning process and when a disaster strikes. It is always better to get to know and establish a relationship with these organizations before you need them during an emergency.

You may also want to reach out to your trade/professional association, accrediting body, corporate headquarters, or licensing agency to find additional resources.

Set a Schedule

The Emergency Planning Committee should hold regular meetings to create, revise, and test your emergency plans.

    • Regular meetings are recommended in order to better prepare your organization for an emergency situation. The more your committee regularly convenes to discuss and work on the plan, the stronger your organization's response to an emergency!
    • Many organizations are required to update and review their emergency plans at least annually. This is a perfect task for the Emergency Planning Committee.

Do Your Research

Your organization could have different regulations and requirements beyond what is recommended in the Ready Rating assessment. Together with your Emergency Planning Committee, research what regulations are required by your industry. More information regarding sector-specific emergency action plan requirements can be found in Step 2: Develop a Plan.

Community Emergency Planning Spotlight

Boys & Girls Club Emergency Planning Committee

The local Boys and Girls Club begins their emergency planning by forming an emergency planning committee. Members from a number of different parts of the organization are selected, and the first meeting is held. Roles and responsibilities within the committee are outlined, and the group decides to meet on the first Tuesday of every month. They work together to complete the "Ready Rating" assessment to determine their current levels of preparedness before they begin any future planning. After the meeting, one of the members of the committee is tasked with reaching out to local fire, police, and emergency management officials to learn more about emergency and disaster planning. Because they are a New Hampshire licensed childcare facility, they review emergency planning requirements to maintain an active license. They also reached out to the Boys and Girls Club National Office for guidance on their organization's specific requirements for emergency planning.