Must-have backup plans for every branch manager

Impending catastrophes like the Oroville Dam in California are an excellent reminder that pre-planning is important. Yet it shouldn’t be limited only to large-scale natural disasters.

Having a solid plan for everyday problems not only means fewer headaches, it also means that you spend less time putting out fires and more time being productive.

Here are 3 key areas in which every branch manager should have a backup plan:


Staffing a branch is one of the most challenging and expensive responsibilities a manager must navigate. Too many staffers is too expensive, and too few means that if one is out, you’re shorthanded. This runs the risk of overworking the remaining employees and compromising customer service.

Make a backup plan for times you’re short-staffed by cross-training existing employees, knowing the name and number of a good temp or prearranging to share staff with another nearby branch. Knowing who will fill in before the disaster strikes can save you precious time.

Power Outages

Transformers blow. Storms roll in and the power gods get angry. Most good institutions already have a plan in place for how to deal with a power outage. After all, no power means no computer, and no computer means staff cannot fully perform their roles.

But are you as ready for power outages as you can be? Now is a good time to review your backup system and talk to experts. Because technology is constantly changing, chances are good there’s an update or new product on the market that will give your backup power supply an added boost.

Lack of Organization

Missing keys, no starter kits in the drawer, no qualified staff on hand to sign official checks: the list of ways an unorganized branch can make an average day a catastrophic day is endless.

Set clear expectations for staff. If it’s their job to assemble starter kits, require a set amount in their drawers by the end of each day and run spot checks. Make a schedule to ensure that someone is always present to sign official checks. And that staff member who keeps forgetting their keys? They’re not the right fit. Let them go and find someone more reliable.