A Continuity of Operations Plan (COOP) is a business continuity plan designed to sustain essential departmental functions until normal operations can be restored following an emergency or other incident. It addresses the following disruptions to normal operations:

  • Loss of access to a facility, or portion of a facility;
  • Loss of services due to a reduced workforce; and
  • Loss of services due to equipment or utilities failure.

Departmental COOPs have two main components: the Narrative Section and Essential Functions Section.

  •  The Narrative Section identifies and addresses departmental specific information, including alert and notification procedures, succession of leadership, delegations of authority, essential space requirements, implementation procedures, and a communications plan.
  •  The Essential Functions Section identifies activities that may not sustain an interruption greater than 30 days in order for the university to continue operating at its typical status.

To accomplish the university's mission, Virginia Tech must ensure its operations are performed with minimal disruption during all-hazards emergencies or other situations that may interrupt normal operations. The purpose of the departmental COOPs is to provide the framework for Virginia Tech to continue or rapidly restore department-wide Essential Functions in the event of an emergency that affects daily operations.

All units, departments, and divisions of the university that perform a function supporting any of the University Essential Functions should participate in COOP planning.

Update your COOP

Departmental COOP documents are managed and updated through the Office of Emergency Management Planning Portal.  Departmental COOP coordinators need to use this portal to update your COOP.

The department’s plan is available only to those individuals with access granted by the Office of Emergency Management. In addition to storing the COOP on the Office of Emergency Management Planning Portal, departments should maintain an electronic and hard copy of their COOP.

University policies 5615 and 1005 require COOP updates and submission to the Office of Emergency Management annually. Departments should update their COOP within the portal by March 15 of each year.  Plans should be updated throughout the year to reflect changes to pertinent departmental information as appropriate.

Need help?

For additional resources about developing your departmental COOP or using the Virginia Tech Office of Emergency Management Planning Portal, please see:

For additional assistance developing or revising a plan contact the Office of Emergency Management.