Business Continuity Tip of the Month

Off to a good start

It’s a new year and maybe one of your resolutions this year is to finally get to grips with that business continuity thing that’s been on the back burner for a while.

But a full-blown business continuity programme can be a daunting prospect, particularly for someone who’s new to the subject. There’s just so much to get to grips with – business impact analysis, risk assessment, strategy development, plan production, exercising and testing, training, education and awareness and so on. And each of these elements has a whole host of activities associated with it. So where on earth to start?

The thing is, a business continuity programme can take an awfully long time from initiation to having the strategy, solutions and plans fully implemented and tested (if indeed they ever are). But if some kind of serious business disruption or crisis happens in the meantime, there will be a whole load of ‘stuff’ to deal with, whether your strategy and plans are in place or not.

So an effective crisis or incident management capability is absolutely essential. And rather than waiting until half way through the project before thinking about it, why not sort out your crisis or incident management team right at the start? Decide who should be in it, brief them on their roles and responsibilities and get them up to speed by way of a scenario-based exercise or two.  

This needn’t take forever. And by doing it, even if the analysis, strategy and detailed plans aren’t complete, you’ll have a fighting chance of responding effectively if the ‘stuff’ should hit the fan in the meantime.