December is here which means the festive season is almost upon us. This further means that as a business you will at some point close for the holidays. For some, you might not close per se but you will just downsize your staffing. This is a delicate process of transition that must be handled with care. Remember it is just a short period and afterwards, a new year will start. After all that it will be back to business as usual. If you are careless you can cause serious disruptions that can be costly later. That is why it is important to properly prepare for the upcoming December shutdown.

Inform All Stakeholders – In Good Time

Your stakeholders are many some of which are your customers, employees, suppliers, and what nought. They must not be ambushed by your shutdown; they must know it well in advance. November is almost done and ideally, by now you should already know when you are shutting down. In principle, it is wise to inform the relevant stakeholders about a month before the shutdown. At the very least tell them about 2 weeks before though that could be short notice for some. When making these communications ensure they are acknowledged and do reminders as well. This helps them to plan and prepare accordingly.

Adequately Plan For Continuity

The nature of businesses differs so how this applies to the different contexts greatly varies. Certain businesses cannot completely close off for the holidays. For such there will be a need to have a skeletal staff for the duration. Then some can completely close off. Whichever the case, you adequately plan for continuity. How are you going to guarantee normal service with a skeletal staff? If you completely close off how will you handle customer issues during that period? You must plan all this ahead of time. This is especially important because when you communicate with stakeholders you will have to clarify these and other operational dynamics.

Ensure Your Security Is In Order

Shutting down will mostly mean your businesses might be unmanned. If this is not properly taken into consideration, your premises can become vulnerable. You must guarantee that your premises will be well-secured despite the absence of the usual stuff. Supposing there is suspicious activity or actual break-ins, who will be contacted. Despite having security, have someone who can periodically go on-site to check if everything is in order. With that said, plan on who will be allowed on the premises during the period. This will help in accountability and limiting access as well. It would be strategic if you have security onsite to inform them on who is allowed and who is not. These are some of the issues to consider regarding security during the shutdown.

SOS And Keep On What Should Be Kept On

Before shutting down be very wary on ensuring you SOS – switch off switches. This goes a long way in saving energy but even helps in avoiding unfortunate incidents. These days there is incessant load shedding in many places. This random switching off and on of power can cause electrical faults that can end up in serious accidents. So it is advisable to switch off switches and unplug devices or appliances that will not be in use. This goes a long way in averting such possible fires. Where possible, you can even turn off breaker units just to be safe. On the flip side, there might be certain stuff you will have to keep on. For example, security systems, refrigeration units, and fax machines are examples of things that must be kept on.

These are 4 ways by which you can start preparing for the December shutdown. There is life after the holidays so do not get carried away by the excitement of shutting down. A lot of things could wrong during the shutdown so it is vital that you prepare for it properly. I am sure these 4 preparations I have shared with you will be useful.