Tech Valley Continuity LLC
Turning Potential Disasters into an Annoyance®
How Do I Get Started?
Each organization will approach Business Continuity Planning differently, depending upon their size, regulatory requirements and maturity of their existing plans. However, in order to be successful you need a solid foundation to build upon.
When starting your Business Continuity Project, consider the following:
Senior Management Support may be the most important consideration. The Executive Management Team sets objectives and approves funding. Make sure they are committed to this initiative in order for it to receive priority and funding when there are competing priorities. Another very important role for Senior Management is to develop a Business Continuity Team Leader.
Business Continuity Team Leader has overall responsibility for managing the development and implementation of the contingency plans. This person will report to Senior Management on the progress and adherence to budget and time line.
Set Achievable Goals and Milestones in order to provide direction for the planning process. Workable plans take time to develop and they must go through multiple stages of maturity. Expecting to develop a plan in a week's time is unrealistic and will only provide a paper document that sits on the shelves and does not work.
Build a Planning Team comprised of a Team Leader and knowledgeable departmental leaders. These folks will be responsible for creating the continuity plans and follow-up with training and ongoing maintenance.
Planning Process typically conforms to the following pattern:
- Operational Analysis: Study your business and identify the most important functions you perform. Determine how long they can "be down" before there is significant impact to cash flow, customer support, regulatory compliance and reputation
- Risk Analysis: Look at the internal and external events that can disrupt operations. Remember, there are very few things that "can't happen here." The events can be cause by Nature, humans, technology or "just life happens."
- Develop Solutions: During your operational and risk analysis, you will identify vulnerabilities and methods (or lack thereof) to address those threats. Explore different ways to prevent or mitigate the threats. Cost justify them and compare how they will support your most important functions. Develop an Implementation Plan and get Management's approval and funding support.
Implement the Solutions according the plan you developed. Be flexible though, because challenges may be uncovered that jeopardize the time line and/or costs.
Train / Test / Evaluate is the ongoing process of ensuring your staff knows their roles and responsibilities, whether the solutions will work and what needs to be implemented going forward.
Three Key Business Continuity Axioms:
1) Your Plan is only as good as your last test
2) What You Don't Test Will Undoubtedly Fail
3) Document - Document - Document
Tech Valley Continuity, LLC. provides business continuity and disaster recovery planning services to a wide range of public and private organizations. Services include: Risk Analysis (RA), Business Impact Analysis (BIA), Plan Testing and Plan Audits for key vendors and customers. We model our Disaster Recovery / Business Continuity plans against the national standard - NFPA 1600 Standard on Disaster / Emergency Management and Business Continuity Programs
Tech Valley Continuity, LLC. promotes a full and complete business continuity planning process, performed with due diligence and conforming to industry best practices, and Tech Valley Continuity, LLC. asserts that only by employing these practices and applying them to your unique business environment can a comprehensive business continuity plan be developed.
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