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What Is Business Continuity Management?

When an organization is facing disruption, business continuity management (BCM) creates an approach to ensure an organization can continue to function. Business continuity management works in tandem with a business impact assessment (BIA) to identify and mitigate the risks that are most harmful to business processes. These processes are tested and revised so they are ready to implement in the event of a disaster, cyber-attack, or other business disruption.

Why is Business Continuity Management Important?

Organizations can’t properly prepare for or recover from disruptions without building and following a disaster recovery plan.

 

Implementing BCM can help your business reduce the impact of disruptions and improve the odds you will recover quickly by having plans ready for different scenarios. Knowing what might befall your organization and how to combat it is a key component of decreasing the likelihood of disruptions altogether. In the long term, BCM can give your employees, customers, and partners increased peace of mind, knowing that you are prepared and able to recover quickly from disruptions and ensure data resiliency.

What is the Business Continuity Management Framework?

Although the exact Business Continuity Management (BCM) Framework can be dependent upon the individual organization, it typically includes a risk assessment, impact analysis, budget, recovery plans, and testing.

Risk Assessment

Start by assessing your risk landscape. Based on your industry and how you operate, what poses a threat to your business? This can include cyber-attacks, natural disasters, human error, vulnerabilities brought on by third parties, and so on. Once you’ve identified all risks, evaluate them based on their level of probability, severity, as well as your willingness to accept certain levels of risk.

Business Impact Analysis

A business impact analysis (BIA) looks at each risk in accordance with its level of impact on different areas of your business, both operationally and financially. Creating a BIA helps you determine what it would cost to weather specific disruptions and the maximum amount of time it would take to resume operations post-event.

Cost-Benefit Analysis and Budget

What are the costs associated with your desired business continuity management strategies? How will these costs maintain your revenue, productivity, and trust over time? A budget should be prioritized based on what is found in the risk assessment and BIA, focusing on the measures that will carry the most weight for your critical business processes and functions.

Testing

Conducting routine audits and testing is critical in determining whether your BCM strategy is effective and that your DR plan is up-to-date. Document your tests to help in identifying any gaps in the recovery process and offer recommendations for improvement.

 

Testing may also be required for regulatory compliance and to secure cyber Insurance or Business Resumption Insurance.

Recovery Measures

After you have an idea of the risks, impacts to your business, and scope of your needs, plan a recovery strategy that is sufficiently detailed and can be implemented quickly. What should happen at every step along the way after a disruption is discovered? What people and resources are needed to carry out these plans?

How Can Business Continuity Management Meet Regulatory Requirements?

Many businesses need to have a business continuity or disaster recovery plan in place as required by law. This is especially true for organizations in the healthcare, government, and financial industries. For example, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requires that healthcare organizations have a plan for how they will provide services to patients if there is a data breach.

 

While BCM is important for every organization, it’s especially important for those who have specific requirements to meet. During a disruption, the last thing you want to have to worry about is potential regulatory action on top of an already complicated situation.

BCM Starts with Business Continuity Consulting Services at TierPoint

Business continuity management can include a wide range of tasks, including risk assessment, business impact analysis, budgeting, testing, disaster recovery, and more. It’s a lot to manage for one business when your IT team already has a lot on their to-do lists. TierPoint’s business continuity consulting services can help you address your risks with confidence, create a strategy that prioritizes your most critical business processes, and get back to business as usual faster. Learn more.

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Planning to develop or update your business continuity plan? Get help from a experienced partner today!