Summer means barbeques, beach trips and BOOM! Thunderstorms.
Summer storm season has arrived, along with its more aggressive older brother, hurricane season.
So are you confident you’d be prepared if your company was flooded or without power for days?
New data suggests not everyone is.
Surprise! Managers and employees don’t agree
June is National Safety Month, so Staples conducted a survey on safety in the workplace. And the findings will open some eyes.
Less than half (43%) of employees believe their work site is prepared to handle extremely hot temperatures.
But the trouble doesn’t stop there. Turns out there exists a disconnect between how ready managers feel their office is to handle weather-related problems, compared to their charges.
Little surprise, managers think their companies are in better shape than employees do:
- 69% of managers say their workplace is prepared for natural disasters and associated issues, such as power outages, vs. 56% of workers, while
- 54% of managers believe their workplace is ready for extreme hot temperatures, compared to 43% of workers.
And when you come down to it, there are plenty of folks in both camps who don’t think they’re prepared.
The Taxman wants you prepared, too
Someone else who’s noticed? IRS. In fact, the Service recently put out a reminder of what businesses should be doing to be prepared before disaster strikes.
IR 2015-83 covers what businesses should be doing to ensure they’re prepared for the worst with these four steps:
- Maintain an additional electronic set of records. Whether you store data in the cloud or in a remote location, make sure your company’s most important documents are housed somewhere besides inside your office building. And make sure IT is staying current on this ever-so-important task.
- Document all valuables/assets. Of course your company already does this both for insurance and property tax purposes. But the start of summer storm season marks an excellent time to review your lists to make sure it’s 100% up-to-date. That will prevent a lot of headaches should you ever get hit.
- Update emergency plans. This may be the most important step you take. Have new employees come aboard since the last time you checked your plan? Do you have current cell phone numbers for everyone? Have people changed departments and need to be accounted for differently? According to the Staples survey, 30% of employees said they receive last-minute notifications or none at all about office closures. Also, don’t hesitate to use social media as a way to get messages out (though that shouldn’t be the only way).
- Check on fiduciary bonds. This one is for companies that outsource payroll. Double check should that your provider has a fiduciary bond in place. The bond could protect you in the event your payroll service provider defaults.
And you can bet that since IRS just specifically pushed for these protections, the Service will have little sympathy for companies that failed to take these steps and get caught short.