Everyday Operations Without a Continuity Strategy is Risky Business
If you don’t have a business continuity strategy in place, you’re creating an environment ripe for panic and confusion. See why putting together your continuity strategy makes good business sense.
If the last month has taught us nothing else, it’s taught business and technology leaders everywhere that having a business continuity solution is integral to maintaining operations in unexpected circumstances. Whether your company has a robust business continuity strategy or is just considering the steps that you will need to take, it’s not too late to work through the steps that experts recommend for business continuity planning during a global pandemic. Few people could have anticipated the far-reaching impact of COVID-19, or the near-immediate need to shift the working location and operations for your entire staff. As you’re scrambling to resume base functions for your business in a world where there is only a vague end-date on the crisis, here are suggestions from the experts to help you sustain operations during this difficult time — and recover once the threat is past.
What is Included in a Business Continuity Strategy?
If your business has operations, then it’s safe to say that you need a business continuity strategy. For extremely small organizations, this may be a simple document that details current IT infrastructures and telecom operations, but mid-size organizations and enterprises will need a significantly more robust approach. Traditionally, a business continuity strategy contains these components:
- Define the risks that could impact your organization (fire, flood, network outages and cyberattacks are the most common)
- Gain a thorough understanding of how various risks will affect operations
- For each risk scenario, look for safeguards that could be implemented to mitigate those risks
- Create a testing procedure that allows you to trigger business continuity strategies to ensure they are robust enough to support operations
- Place your business continuity strategy on a review cycle to ensure your processes remain up-to-date
It’s important to note that even the best insurance policy will be unable to cover the full scope of costs associated with the loss of business operations. Everything from the cost of communicating with your various audiences to the loss of revenue after a cyberattack must all be taken into consideration when you’re developing a proactive business continuity strategy. The goal is to ensure that you can sustain minimal operations, while quickly scaling back up to full capacity as the threat passes.
Who Should Have Input on Business Continuity Planning?
Business continuity planning is often driven through senior IT leadership or a CIO, as many of the core operations reside within the technology team’s purview. However, it’s vital that you encourage other business leaders and your executive team to become familiar with the plans and fully engaged with the business continuity process. This helps ensure that you do not run into any roadblocks as you are funding your strategies or if you need to implement tactics quickly to sustain operations.
Leverage Technology to Create a Strategic Advantage
In difficult times, it’s often the companies that are able to execute well that are able to maintain operations — and customers. Everything from defining a messaging option to reach out to staff and customers in the event of an emergency to having your data storage in the cloud can provide the added level of security that your company can manage through these challenges. With the current COVID-19 crisis, companies that are able to scrape together their operations and quickly educate their audiences are the ones that are becoming a beacon of hope in a world that seems to be shifting on its axis. Maintaining perspective by having a proactive business continuity plan is what can allow your company to leverage the technology you have in place to create a long-term strategic advantage for your company.
If your company needs support during the current coronavirus epidemic or in general business continuity planning, contact the experts at Intelice Solutions at (301) 664-6800. We have been providing exceptional IT support services and consulting for mid-size and larger organizations throughout the DC Metro area since 1996 and can help you quickly regain access to critical business systems while supporting remote staff and customers with the tools and information needed to sustain operations.