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Free Crisis Communication Templates

In this article, you’ll find a variety of helpful, free crisis communication plan templates to use in preparation for an emergency or unexpected crisis.

On this page, you’ll find a crisis communication plan template, a school crisis communication plan template, a business crisis communication plan template, and much more.


Crisis Communication Plan Template

Crisis Communication Plan Template

Identify your crisis communication team and their corresponding contact information, create a crisis plan of action, and document a response plan with this comprehensive template. Use this template to adequately respond to and deal with a crisis when it occurs, so you can keep operations running smoothly.

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School Crisis Communication Plan Template

School Crisis Management Plan Template

Define and set guidelines for a school handling a crisis with this crisis communication plan template. Identify crisis response teams and contacts, track emergency and medical protocols, and develop an appropriate line of communication for staff, parents, the media, and other relevant parties. 

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University Crisis Communication Plan Template

University Crisis Management Plan Template

Use this crisis communication plan template to develop a plan of action for a university or college. Document the crisis and crisis level, establish a plan of action, and determine who is responsible for what strategy, so you can manage the crisis and most effectively communicate with others at the university.

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Business Crisis Communication Plan Template

Business Crisis Communication Plan Template

Develop an escalation framework and strategy for each level of crisis, describe each crisis situation in detail, and determine who is in charge of each aspect to ensure you handle the crisis effectively. With space to document everything from the crisis response team to the crisis management procedure, this template helps you manage the crisis and all related communications.

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Hospital Crisis Communication Plan Template

Hospital Crisis Communication Plan Template

Assess and manage all crisis communications in a hospital setting with this helpful template. Put in place a crisis communications team, create a response plan, and delegate tasks and actions to specific people to ensure you’re able to handle crises that may occur in a hospital or healthcare facility.

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Nonprofit Crisis Communication Plan Template

Nonprofit Crisis Communication Plan Template

Define a crisis situation, outline the steps to handle it, and create a response team to help mitigate the situation to keep your nonprofit organization on track. With space to identify the crisis level, the response team, and the response procedure, you can ensure you cover all your bases while also keeping employees and staff safe.

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Social Media Crisis Communication Plan Template

Social Media Crisis Communication Plan Template

Respond to a crisis situation on social media platforms appropriately and in a timely manner with this crisis communication plan template, specifically geared toward your social media strategy. Set the order in which people respond to social media inquiries, and establish times when managers or executive-level employees should jump in.

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Restaurant Crisis Communication Plan Template

Restaurant Crisis Communication Plan Template

When your restaurant encounters a crisis, you’ll need to have a communication plan in place to identify, mitigate, and inform all employees and restaurant-goers about the situation. With this comprehensive template, you can name your communication team, identify a crisis spokesperson, create a stakeholder communication plan, and more.

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What Is a Crisis Communication Plan?

A crisis communication plan is a series of guidelines and measures designed to prepare a company or business for an emergency, a crisis, or an unexpected event.

Organizations put the communication plan into action at the onset of a crisis, and it helps them communicate a broader message to employees, third-party vendors, key stakeholders, and anyone else associated with the business who should be made aware of the crisis. By establishing these plans ahead of time, you help ensure that all communication is sent out and received in a timely manner, which can aid in handling the situation by assuring everyone that they are in the loop.

By having a record of your crisis communication plan, you can reflect on your crisis management efforts and ensure they’re as effective as possible. Although different crises may trigger the implementation of the plan, a communication plan’s general use remains the same: to ensure everyone has access to the right information at the right time.

Once a communication plan goes into effect, you are also able to more easily monitor media coverage and ensure the public receives the correct information.


How to Write a Crisis Communication Plan

To create the most effective crisis communication plan for your company or business, follow the below steps.

  1. Identify the goal of the communication plan. Establish what you want your communication plan to accomplish, whether it’s informing employees or communicating larger messages to the media.
  2. Document key stakeholders. Outline the key stakeholders who need to stay informed throughout the crisis.
  3. Create an information sharing plan. No matter where the crisis comes from or what team deals with it first, there should be a hierarchy of communication so that all people and team members can stay informed.
  4. Assign team members to specific tasks. Although there is usually a crisis response team that deals with most tasks associated with handling the crisis, all teams should be involved. Determine who is responsible for what, and assign jobs that team members should complete when the situation escalates.
  5. Assess all potential crisis situations. Outline all potential situations that could strike and affect your business, whether it’s a natural disaster, a pandemic, a national threat, or otherwise.
  6. Think through all common questions. When a crisis occurs, many questions and concerns will likely arise. Identify all potential questions, and come up with the best, most thoughtful answers.
  7. Identify associated risks. You can plan for almost everything, but there will always be risks associated with your plan, regardless of how well thought-out it is. If your plan doesn’t pan out as expected, you should prepare for the risks to your business.
  8. Create social media guidelines. Proactive communication is the key to getting the right message out to the public and clearing up potential misunderstandings. Put out a message as soon as possible and continue to monitor all social media platforms, dealing with any negative feedback or comments immediately.

Improve Crisis Communication Planning with Real-Time Work Management in Smartsheet

Creating a crisis communication plan is the first step in mitigating damage and aligning response teams in the event of an emergency. In order to keep everyone up to date — and to mobilize efforts rapidly — consider using a tool that allows you to plan, track, and manage all company communications in one central location.

Smartsheet is an enterprise work execution platform that is fundamentally changing the way businesses and teams work. Over 80,000 brands and millions of information workers trust Smartsheet to help them accelerate business execution and address the volume and velocity of today's collaborative work. 

The familiar Smartsheet interface that is designed for how people actually work leads to rapid and broad adoption across your organization. Use self-service reports and dashboards in Smartsheet to provide real-time visibility into resources, status, and performance, so you can rapidly align operations with strategy.

Discover why over 80,000 brands trust Smartsheet to get work done. 

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Align messaging and streamline communication with real-time work management in Smartsheet.

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