Does your business have a plan when disaster strikes? Whether it’s a natural disaster or a PR crisis, having a ready-made playbook on hand will help you come out stronger on the other side of any emergency. 💪
While few businesses can predict a big disaster like the pandemic, companies with a recovery procedure in place can be better positioned to act faster in the future. When you invest in a business continuity plan (BCP), you can keep your team safe, avoid business disruptions, and protect your brand image.
A business continuity plan covers all the potential emergency situations that could impact your business. But it takes time to create a solid continuity plan—and you need to focus your energy on the meat of the plan, not on formatting.
Fortunately, BCP templates make it a breeze to quickly create contingency plans that leave no stone unturned. 🔍
In this guide, we’ll explain what a continuity plan template is, explain the key components of a BCP template, and share our top 10 free business continuity plan templates.
- What Is a Continuity Plan Template?
- What Are the Key Components of a Business Continuity Plan Template?
- 10 Free Continuity Plan Templates
- 1. ClickUp Business Continuity Plan Template
- 2. ClickUp Contingency Plan Template
- 3. ClickUp Probability and Impact Matrix Template
- 4. ClickUp Business Impact Analysis Template
- 5. ClickUp Priority Matrix Whiteboard Template
- 6. ClickUp Emergency Plan Template
- 7. ClickUp Workplace Emergency Action Plan Template
- 8. Word Business Continuity Plan Template by Disaster Recovery Plan Template
- 9. Word Small Firm Business Continuity Plan Template by FINRA.org
- 10. Word Business Continuity Plan Template by LegalTemplates
What Is a Continuity Plan Template?
A continuity plan template is a structured document that helps your business continue operating even during an emergency.
At its core, a continuity plan template is all about preparedness. Whether you’re facing a natural disaster like a tornado or a human-made outage from a cyberattack, a BCP template gives you a roadmap to minimize business disruption and downtime.
This isn’t just for big enterprises, either. Small businesses are more susceptible to disasters because they have fewer resources, so it’s extra important for small businesses to create a continuity plan.
The downside is that creating a BCP takes time and resources, which is why so many businesses don’t have one. Luckily, following a ready-made template can shave hours off the BCP creation process. It also helps you look at several facets of disaster preparedness so you’re less likely to overlook something important.
What Are the Key Components of a Business Continuity Plan Template?
Every business has a different definition of what constitutes an “emergency.” The good news is that you’ll still be able to follow the same emergency management formula with the right template. A solid business continuity plan should include these components at a minimum:
- Table of contents: List all sections in the template—with jump links—for easy access
- Introduction: Introduce the BCP’s purpose and scope. It’s also important to distinguish when you need to use this plan and when it’s time to contact emergency services instead
- Risk assessment: This section should identify potential threats that could affect your business. It should include a business impact analysis to measure how damaging that particular risk would be to your company
- Recovery strategies: Once you understand the potential risks, you can create a strategic plan for recovery. Check with your legal team to see if there are regulatory requirements for this step
- Stakeholder roles and contact information: List all team members and their emergency contact phone numbers. Include relevant contacts in human resources (HR), information technology (IT), and the management team. The plan should also specify which stakeholders are in charge of each part of the plan
- Communication plan: Specify how you’ll share information with staff members, senior management, business partners, and the public
10 Free Continuity Plan Templates
A business continuity plan keeps your business running even when the going gets tough. Creating a plan takes time, but with the right template, you can streamline formatting and get straight to the good stuff. Check out these 10 free continuity plan templates to speed up the continuity plan creation process. ⚡
1. ClickUp Business Continuity Plan Template
Equipment failures, pandemics, and natural disasters wreak havoc on any business. You need a flexible business plan that works even when the worst happens. That might mean you’re only performing critical business functions, but that’s better than nothing, right?
You can’t predict every potential disaster, but the ClickUp Business Continuity Plan Template is the next best thing to a magic crystal ball. 🔮
It includes several helpful sections for:
- Risk assessment
- Recovery strategies
- Process testing and reviews
This template even includes pretty visualizations and colors to draw your attention to the right places. Create custom statuses, fields, and views to make the template your own.
The ClickUp Business Continuity Plan Template also integrates with your ClickUp project management tools so you can generate tasks, track time, create dependencies, and more without leaving your BCP template. 🤩
2. ClickUp Contingency Plan Template
A contingency plan is different from a continuity plan. This type of BCP template identifies potential risks, lists possible solutions, and gives your team a strategic plan to respond to the most likely disruptions.
The ClickUp Contingency Plan Template gives your team an expert framework for:
- Analyzing risks
- Setting goals and desired outcomes
- Finding resources and personnel for executing a contingency plan
- Testing all alternative scenarios
The great thing about this template is that it provides a process for creating a unique contingency plan tailored to the risks you care about the most. It also identifies team members’ responsibilities and tasks for every scenario, making your next steps crystal clear.
3. ClickUp Probability and Impact Matrix Template
We saw firsthand how easily a pandemic can cause massive business disruptions. But some disasters are more (and less) likely to have an impact on your business.
For example, if you’re in the Midwest, hurricanes probably aren’t on your radar. However, if your supply chain relies on materials brought in from the coast, you’re probably going to care a lot about hurricanes. 🌀
The ClickUp Probability and Impact Matrix Template will help you sort through which risks are most likely to disrupt your business. It even ranks these risks in terms of potential damage to help you prioritize your time and resources. This way, you prep for the most damaging (and likely) emergencies first.
This template is a must-have if your team struggles to make informed decisions or prioritize tasks. This business continuity plan template even includes a simple visualization you can share with other team members to make informed group decisions in less time. 🙌
4. ClickUp Business Impact Analysis Template
A business impact analysis (BIA) identifies potential risks to your company. Once you identify the risks, the BIA logs all of the action plans you can activate in case of an emergency.
For starters, log every potential emergency in an issue tracking template. From there, use the ClickUp Business Impact Analysis Template to quickly plug in criteria like financial impact, brand reputation, customer experience, and more. ✨
This continuity plan template helps teams get out of unproductive cycles of anxiety by focusing on plan activation. Instead of going with your gut in a crisis, this rubric-style template supports calm, objective decisions using quantified data.
5. ClickUp Priority Matrix Whiteboard Template
Once you know the higher-priority emergencies that could affect your business, you might still need help prioritizing which ones to address first. Use the ClickUp Priority Matrix Whiteboard Template to get clarity on which disaster plans and tasks you should execute first.
You can use this template during the planning phase of creating a continuity plan or even when a disaster strikes. The Priority Matrix gets your team on the same page, ranks the urgency of various tasks, and visualizes everything for your group in a pretty graph. 📊
6. ClickUp Emergency Plan Template
Every business continuity plan template should contain an emergency plan of some kind. The ClickUp Emergency Plan Template is useful not only for your continuity plan, but also for emergency signage throughout your building.
You’re free to customize the plan to your liking, but out of the box, the template includes:
- Evacuation plans
- Escape routes
- Assembly points
- Roles of key personnel
- Step-by-step procedures for different emergencies
Some businesses make a single emergency plan while others will need to create multiples. For example, you can create an emergency plan for fires and a separate one for tornadoes. 🌪️
Keep in mind that local, state, or federal laws will apply to emergency signs. Check with your legal team to ensure you display these signs per those requirements.
7. ClickUp Workplace Emergency Action Plan Template
Some business continuity plan templates are designed for protecting business operations or the public, but it’s important to have a plan for protecting your employees too. The ClickUp Workplace Emergency Action Plan Template helps you do just that.
This is a more in-depth emergency plan that helps you:
- Communicate quickly and clearly with employees during all types of emergencies
- Define who is in charge of what in an emergency—before the emergency actually happens
- Store all emergency plans in one secure place
An emergency plan is great because it equips your employees with the skills and knowledge required to rise above an emergency. Some insurance carriers require businesses to have a documented emergency plan, so this can also help you secure coverage. 🌻
ClickUp is an all-in-one workplace solution, so storing your emergency action plan in the same platform as your tasks and chats makes it more accessible for the entire team.
8. Word Business Continuity Plan Template by Disaster Recovery Plan Template
Are you a Microsoft company? Then you’ll love the Word Business Continuity Plan Template by Disaster Recovery Plan Template. It’s a publicly available version of MIT’s Business Continuity Plan, so you can trust that it covers all your bases.
This free continuity plan template includes sections for:
- Design of the plan
- Organization of disaster response and recovery
- Business continuity plan
- Team management procedures
- Recovery procedures, including a notification list
Downloads are available for Word and Adobe PDF, but the template’s text is available on the website if you don’t want to download it.
9. Word Small Firm Business Continuity Plan Template by FINRA.org
The Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) regulates the investment industry. Investments are all about risk management, so it’s no surprise that FINRA released a free Small Firm Business Continuity Plan Template.
A continuity plan is required if you’re a small brokerage firm or if you’re otherwise required to follow FINRA guidelines. Instead of wondering whether you’re compliant, follow FINRA’s continuity plan template for more peace of mind. 🧘
It includes sections for:
- Emergency contact personnel
- Office locations and alternate sites
- Firm policies
- Financial and operational assessments
- Mission critical systems
- Regulatory reporting
- Updates and annual reviews
You should still tailor the template to your unique needs, but the template will help you save a lot of time.
10. Word Business Continuity Plan Template by LegalTemplates
LegalTemplate’s Word Business Continuity Plan Template is no-frills, but it includes all the information you need to create your own business continuity plan.
We like that the site actually takes you through a structured process to create an incident response plan (IRP), emergency response plan (ERP), supply chain continuity plan, and other types of continuity plans that you might need.
LegalTemplates also throws in a few helpful tips for tracking your continuity plan goals over time. They say you need to review the checklist twice a year, practice implementing everything once a year, and do a formal revamp of your continuity plan every other year.
Improve Business Processes With ClickUp
Business continuity management is a must-have for businesses of all sizes. Whether it’s a natural disaster or other emergency, you need a plan long before the worst happens.
Rely on this list of free continuity plan templates to create a disaster recovery plan that helps you get back to normal business operations more quickly. 👔
Templates are helpful, but wouldn’t it be better if you could store your templates alongside your Tasks, Projects, Docs, Whiteboards, and more?
ClickUp combines all your work into one platform to save time and eliminate the hassles of switching platforms. See the ClickUp difference for yourself: Create your free ClickUp Workspace now.