Unforeseen circumstances can happen anytime that can devastate businesses. Whether natural catastrophes like a forest fire, flood, earthquake or pandemic disease outbreaks, or man-made disasters like terrorist attacks, ransomware, and other cyber attacks, organizations should be able to carry out their usual business operations in the quickest time to avoid the risk of losing their important customers or even going out of business.
A Business Continuity Plan (BCP) is a vital strategy for an organization to manage its risk. It should be updated periodically just as the software and hardware of an organization get updated. An ideal BCP should identify all potential risks and their effects on business operations. A series of testing and constant reviews on the processes should be done to ensure success whenever the BCP is activated.
Enumerated below are the major benefits of having a solid Business Continuity Plan:
1. Keeping business operational during and after a disaster
Having an on-site data center backup is not enough. You should have at least one cloud backup in case disasters happen that might damage physical equipment.
2. Building customer trust and confidence
Ensuring your business is always online and available even when disaster strikes attract more customers to patronize your products and services.
3. Safeguarding company reputation
The company's reputation has a great impact on its sales revenue. Positive feedback from customers contributes to a good reputation.
4. Mitigating risk and lowering the financial impact
Business-critical data should be strongly protected and made available during any plan or unplanned outage. This could help lower down the impact of the financial loss incurred during downtime.
5. Complying with regulatory or legal requirements
A good BCP should adhere to the security standards set by the regulatory and compliance entity.
There are five steps to take when building a business continuity plan:
Step 1: Form a business continuity management team.
Assign representatives from each department to join this team. They will be in charge of preparing the standards for the BCP, train additional team members, and identify the processes involved.
Step 2: Conduct a business impact analysis.
The impact analysis will help a company identify the risks and threats to operations, finances, reputation, employees, and supply chains. With the list of potential risks identified, the team will be able to discuss how these risks would affect operations.
Step 3: Identify resources needed through gap analysis.
Since potential risks are identified using impact analysis, a gap analysis will reveal the discrepancies between the resources on hand and resources that your company still lacks. With the gap analysis, it will help you formulate disaster recovery strategies.
Step 4: Explore and implement disaster recovery strategies
Without a disaster recovery plan, it will be difficult for a company to bounce back after the business is impacted and financial losses are incurred. It is crucial to have the recovery strategies established beforehand and reviewed periodically.
Step 5: Test the disaster recovery plan and make further recommendations and improvements.
BCP changes and adapts as the business grows. The best practice is to test and observe the disaster recovery plan every once in a while to make sure it is effective, and make recommendations for future improvement.
A company will easily cope with crisis through a carefully crafted business continuity plan. Failure to plan ahead can be disastrous for any business, as it might risk losing customers or at worst, cease operations. A clear and concise business continuity plan will give the best chances of overcoming a business disaster. The BCP should be tested periodically to ensure smooth rollout whenever is it activated during times of crisis.
Do you have questions concerning business continuity planning? Book a schedule with us through this link: Cloudvela Booking Page. We provide solutions that will help your business during the time of crisis.