Free Incident Response Plan Template for Small Business (Doc&PDF)

July 31, 2023 998 views

Keep track of all the incidents in production with an efficient and powerful incident response template. This template allows you to take suitable measures quickly whenever a situation arises.


No plan is perfect, and you will likely find yourself in catastrophic security breaches while working in a business. If not timely managed, these security breaches might become security incidents causing issues and roadblocks in your operations.

That is why it is essential to manage such incidents in real-time and respond correctly before the situation escalates, causing immense damage.

While you may not be able to prevent all the incidents from happening at all, an effective incident response plan will help you minimize the disastrous consequences of such incidents and the cleaning costs.

What is Incident Response Plan Template for Small Businesses?

So, what exactly is an incident response plan? An incident response plan is integral to your business as it documents incidents and their appropriate response. The plan features a detailed procedure for each incident that security teams and employees can follow to mitigate the risks involved. It also contains checklists to follow and the roles of everyone in the response team to ensure a quick solution.

An effective incident response plan contains the steps for detecting an incident, the level of risk involved, and how to combat that incident.

The incident response plan also depends on the response team. Some organizations hire a professional incident response team, some train their employees to act as response teams in case of emergencies, and some outsource this to third-party organizations. Despite who the response team is, an efficient incident response plan is essential to guide them correctly.

An incident response plan template is a general idea of what a response plan should include, which can be tweaked according to the organization's needs. With the help of an incident response plan template, you can save a lot of time and ensure that your plan is efficient.

Why Do You Need an Incident Response Plan Template for Small Business?

Incident response plans are equally important for small and large organizations. Small businesses are already on thin ice with their products taking off and creating a market image. During this, if an incident goes out of hand, it can have catastrophic consequences for the business that might even lead to its shut down.

So, getting a fantastic incident response plan for your small business should be one of the first priorities. We vehemently recommend that you use an incident response plan template for developing your incident response plan if you are new to creating incident response plans. The template will guide you on what items to include and what level of detail is required. With an easy-to-understand template design, the response plan will allow effective communication in any serious situation.

Here is why you need an incident response plan template:

Prevent Data Breach

Data is a highly valued asset of a company since it contains confidential information about your company. Now imagine a data breach that will be a disaster of epic proportions and a PR nightmare. The customers after this breach are likely to take their business elsewhere, and you would lose most of your customer base if you do not prevent or mitigate the consequences of the incident.

The damages will be even greater if your investors and stakeholders are aware of it. They will lose confidence in the company and want to leave it as soon as possible. Such can result from having no incident response plan or not being a good one.

An incident response plan template will likely cover all these sensitive points to ensure that you can mitigate the risks as much as possible.

Minimize Duration and Level of Damage

No business is prone to accidents or security breaches. That is why you should always have an incident response plan and team on hand to mitigate the attack. A good incident response plan will minimize the duration of the incident and protect the business from damage as much as possible.

Using a good incident response plan template relevant to your business will protect the business from negative publicity and recover shareholder confidence in the organization. This will minimize losses and strengthen any points of vulnerability. It will also restore all the processes and systems that are affected and prevent such incidents from happening again.

Establish Best Practices for Incident Handling

An incident response plan prevents any chaos amongst staff and ensures everything gets back to normal as soon as possible. For that purpose, an incident response plan enlists the best practices for each incident. An incident response plan develops effective communication by considering authorities, employees, and law enforcement. It mitigates the long-term and short-term impacts of the incident and protects the brand as well as business continuity.

An incident response plan is handy for small businesses that rely heavily on outsourcing and third parties.

WPS Template Store - Find the Best Incident Response Plan Template

If you are new to incident response plans and don’t know where to start, we recommend using a template to get an idea of the standard industry practices. Templates are an excellent starting point as they will tell you what to include in your plan with a design that allows effective communication in emergencies.

While the internet is filled with many incident response templates, it can be tricky to sift the web looking for a suitable template. If you require professional-looking templates with great design, we recommend you try your luck at WPS Templates. WPS Templates has an extensive library of professionally designed templates that will cover all the essential points that you require in an incident response template. The templates are available in all formats, including doc and pdf, making it easier for you to share and edit the file.

Most of the templates are free, so you can download them without purchasing the membership. However, if you want something advanced, then you can also go for the premium option, which is very cost-effective. With the premium membership, you can also edit the templates' colors, designs, and fonts to customize them however you want. Even if you don't have the premium version, you can still edit the text of the template in WPS Office for a seamless experience. The software is straightforward to navigate and very intuitive.

At WPS Templates, you will be able to find many types of incident response templates. You can then look for the one that suits the needs of your small business. Ensure you visit WPS Templates for your incident response plan templates for professional quality templates.

How to Use the Incident Response Plan Template?

An incident response plan is integral in any business, and there is no one way to use it. Depending on the company and its processes, the incident response plan can be used in multiple ways. Another factor affecting the use of incident response plans is who uses them. Is there a professional incident response team or employees acting as an ad hoc response team?

There are two main frameworks for Incident response plans. One is NIST, the government standards body, and the other is SANS, a non-profit security research organization. Despite which of these frameworks is used, they should have the same end result: effective incident response management.

Here is how you can use your incident response plan template to get desired results:

  • Ensure your incident response includes guidelines for the response team and the employees so everyone can play their role in mitigating the risks.

  • The incident response plan should also include how to look for the risks and techniques to detect them.

  • The employees should be told to report the severity of the risks as low, medium, high or critical.

  • The incident response plan should cover all sorts of incidents likely to occur in the nature of the business.

  • An incident response plan template should be designed to communicate with employees what they need to do effectively. If the template is easy to understand, the action will be quicker and more thorough.

  • Your incident response plan template can enlist different types of incidents, stages involved in mitigating the risk, and how to make a quick recovery.

  • It is crucial to place your incident response plan where everyone, especially the response team, can view it. It can be placed in a common room, hallway, company website, or collaboration platform.

You can utilize an incident response plan in multiple ways depending on the information you want to give. You can make various incident response plans for different incidents or a single one covering all sorts of incidents.

Where to Download the Incident Response Plan Template?

WPS offers you to download incident response plan templates for free. A premium range of templates can also be downloaded by purchasing a premium membership, which will barely make a dent in your pocket.

WPS has an extensive range of incident response plan templates, and you can choose one that fits your small business. Here is how you can download a template from WPS Templates:

  • Open your browser and go to the WPS Templates store and sign in to WPS templates with your email, and then start browsing templates.

  • You can use the search bar to find the templates you want.

  • When you locate the incident response template you want, click on it to preview it. You can click on the download button to download it to your PC if it is what you need. WPS also allows you to edit the template in the browser before downloading.

  • Once downloaded, you can edit the template and add all the relevant data. If you have a WPS premium membership, you can also play around with colors, themes, and fonts to further customize the template.

And Voila! You have your customized template for an incident response plan.

Best 3 Incident Response Plan Templates for Small Business

If you are a bit confused about the type of template you should choose, we can guide you until you can find one on your own. WPS has loads of different kinds of incident response templates, so you can select more than one and then work on them accordingly.

It is not like all the incident response templates will cater to the same problem, so you will need to sift through the templates. There are many different types of incident response templates, depending on how thorough you want them to be and what kind of incident it is.

Let us look at the top incident response plan templates available:

1. Emergency Response Template

This emergency response template guides employees and staff on what to do in a natural disaster. The template uses bright contrasting colors and large font to get their attention. This emergency response template covers four steps to stay protected. You can edit it and add more effort on what employees should do and who to inform. List down any possible emergency exits as well.

2. Orange Emergency Response Template

This Orange Incident Response Template is another template you can use to guide employees and response teams regarding quick action. You can use this template to navigate them against accidents, fires, or natural disasters. Along with that, you can add detailed steps towards recovery. An excellent eye-catching template like this will ensure employees go through it at least once.

3. Blue Emergency Response Template

This Emergency response template can be used to guide staff regarding first aid and medical emergencies. In case of accidents, especially in production plants, a response plan like this can be helpful.

Wrap Up

Now, you know all about incident response plans and how they work. You can easily find incident response plan templates at WPS templates to start working on incident response plans. These templates will save you a lot of time and effort in creating incident response plans from scratch. You can also download WPS Office to edit and customize your templates seamlessly. Ensure your incident response plan includes all the essentials from risk detection, analysis, mitigation of risk, and recovery.

15 years of office industry experience, tech lover and copywriter. Follow me for product reviews, comparisons, and recommendations for new apps and software.