Most businesses run without mishap for years - but what happens when they don’t? What happens to the business when there is a fire? How are orders completed, what happens to the customers while the business is closed?
Any incident, large or small, whether it is natural, accidental or deliberate, can cause major disruption to your organisation. But if you plan now, rather than waiting for it to happen, you will be able to get back to business in the quickest possible time.
What is Business Continuity Management?
Business Continuity Management is a planning process which helps managers pre-plan the response to a disruptive incident rather than having to react without a plan.
The Business Continuity Institute defines Business Continuity Management as:
'a holistic management process that identifies potential business impacts that threaten an organisation and provides a framework for building resilience with the capability for an effective response that safeguards the interests of its key stakeholders, reputation, brand and value creating activities.'
It’s about identifying those parts of your organisation that you can’t afford to lose – such as information, stock, premises, staff – and planning how to maintain these if an incident occurs.
BCM is simpler than you might think. To implement BCM you will need to consider the following questions:
- What are your organisation’s key products and services?
- What are the critical activities and resources required to deliver these?
- What are the risks to these critical activities?
- How will you maintain these critical activities in the event of an incident (loss of access to premises, loss of staff, loss of ICT, loss of utilities etc)?
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