Critical Decision Support: Why Measure Program Readiness? Business Continuity Assessment
Business Continuity Assessment Introduction
Can your business survive a disruption or crisis? Most organizations believe they can—until one occurs. Every organization faces critical decisions. Find out what you need to know before a disruption tests your resiliency.
Mapping the right route to any destination requires some mission-critical facts:
- Starting point.
- Best and alternate routes.
- Progress measurement
Without this information, the map is unlikely to guide you or your organization to the right outcome in an efficient manner.
These same principles apply for business continuity, IT disaster recovery, workplace violence and communicable illness planning. A business continuity program must measure deficiencies and track improvements to encourage company funding and support for a ‘Culture of Preparedness’. A business continuity program is as a key initiative and competitive advantage for any organization.
To reach your goals of comprehensive preparedness, best practices and regulatory compliance, accurate measurements that provide quantitative assessments must be used to determine the maturity level of your current business continuity program. The reasons to assess progress are:
Business continuity plans need to follow best practices.
Boards and officers need confirmation of plan effectiveness and alignment to industry standards and best practices.
Self-assessment provides quick baseline and progress measurement.
What keeps you up at night?
Resilient businesses survive disasters… and, of all the disasters you have seen, the worst will be the one that happens to your company.
Insurance coverage is a wise corporate investment. However Business Interruption insurance will not protect your company from damaged relations with your customers and suppliers. Property and Casualty insurance will not preserve your corporate reputation as a reliable link in your customer’s supply chain.
Most corporate disasters and crises can be predicted. Acknowledging these signals and developing plans and infrastructure to manage the events which follow dramatically improves the outcome for all stakeholders. Every organization needs to identify its vulnerabilities – existing and potential – and institute procedures to monitor, plan, mitigate and train for impacts in the event of a crisis.
If you don’t measure your readiness… how will you be able to manage it?
Business continuity programs must be built using a best practices approach to preparedness, disaster management, emergency management, and business continuity. This approach should be based on -and aligned with- recognized industry standards and best practices. Utilizing a self-assessment tool that aligns to these standards and best practices provides an objective measurement of an organization’s program and confirms the maturity level of the business continuity planning efforts. Organizations need to know where their current business continuity programs align, and where their programs might have gaps, when compared against industry standards and best practices.
A measurable self-assessment, based on generally accepted standards, can provide your organization a basis to justify current and future business continuity initiatives. The self-assessment should provide a set of focus areas and terminology consistent across multiple industries. A self-assessment should provide awareness of compliance progress toward best practices and accepted principles to empower continuous improvement to long-term viability.
Quantitative measurements through a self-assessment can answer a variety of critical questions to help your organization measure various initiatives associated with its preparedness program.
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