Research shows when local businesses bounce back quickly following a disaster, the community as a whole responds positively as well. If a disaster-hit community can count on local businesses and services to help them recover as soon as possible, these businesses can help rebuild the local economy and provide employment for locals. 

Wouldn’t it be better if a community could help support local businesses during this time, rather than having to look elsewhere for services? This is why it’s important for businesses to have continuity plans in place, so they can be up and running again quickly.

What is Business Roundtable EXTEND?

Established in 2011, Business Roundtable EXTEND is helping businesses be better prepared and better connected in order to be more resilient in the face of disaster.  The reality is confronting – after a disaster, the longer a business is out of action, the more difficult it becomes to re-establish a customer base and therefore more likely it will fail. Even with Australia’s recent history of disasters, half of all small and medium sized businesses still have no preparedness plan. 

Business Roundtable EXTEND is working to change this. Every Roundtable is different, based on the issues and interests of local businesses. Business owners learn about and discuss disaster preparedness, as well as create networking opportunities with other businesses to help foster community resilience. Disaster resilience experts believe collaboration is integral to a strong and resilient community, especially in the business sector.

What is business continuity/business resilience?

It is important businesses are prepared for interruptions to their normal proceedings, and have a plan to help them bounce back faster.  The effects of storms, cyclones, floods and fires can mean the end of a business, but you can help reduce this likelihood through a business continuity plan.  By considering your customers, suppliers, staff, equipment, communications and finances now, you can make better plans for what may happen in the future. For example:

  • What would happen if flooding wiped out your production capabilities for three months?
  • What would happen if a cyclone in another part of the state meant one of your key suppliers went out of business?
  • What would happen if a storm and power surge destroyed your IT capabilities, resulting in a loss of all computers and vital client information?

A business continuity plan examines such scenarios and helps businesses plan how they will respond.  It is too late to start planning for a disaster when it’s about to hit, so early preparation is key.

Who can be involved?

A typical Roundtable consists of businesses from across a community, including trades, retail, hospitality, and health and education services, as well as representatives from local council, emergency services or disaster management groups.  It doesn’t matter if you’re well-versed in disaster preparedness or have never thought of it, Business Roundtable EXTEND provides valuable lessons and knowledge for all business owners.

Volunteering Queensland runs Roundtable events in communities across Queensland, often in partnership with local businesses, council, and the Chamber of Commerce. Find out more about being a participant at a Roundtable.

Our work is all about building community self-reliance; as such we are continually looking for enthusiastic business owners to host Roundtables for their own communities. If you are interested in running a Roundtable, we can help you do so, find out more about becoming a host

Check out our collection of case studies to read more about how Business Roundtable EXTEND is helping businesses.

Find out more

Contact our team via:

P (07) 3002 7600

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