Business Continuity Management
Business continuity management provides for the availability of processes and resources in order to ensure the continued achievement of critical objectives - vital functions without which an organisation cannot long operate. If a critical business function is non-operational, the organisation could suffer serious legal, financial, goodwill, or other serious losses or penalties.
Business continuity management - and associated analysis, planning, training and exercises - allows business to effectively prevent, prepare, respond and recover to relevant threats and risks, including:
Fire and flood.
Pandemics (including Novel Coronavirus)
Serious and violent crime.
A business continuity management program is a holistic process supported by senior management and appropriately funded to ensure that the necessary steps are taken to identify the impact of potential losses, maintain viable recovery strategies and recovery plans, and ensure the continuity of services through personnel training, plan testing and maintenance.
The PPRR Cycle
The prevention, preparedness, response and recovery (PPRR) model is a comprehensive and cyclic approach to risk management and security operating procedures, processes and systems:
Preparedness. Steps before an incident occurs.
Prevention. Actions to reduce or eliminate the likelihood or effects of an incident.
Response. Actions to contain, control or minimise the impacts of an incident.
Recovery. Steps taken to minimise disruption and recovery times following an incident.
This cycle is detailed below.
Business Impact Analysis
A business impact analysis (BIA) is a structured and formal process for determining the priorities for the resumption and continuity of services / business activities following a disruption, and allows business units to prioritise the activities from a time perspective, separating those that are time critical from those that are not.
Not all processes are critical and yet all processes are required to provide a complete business service. Services that directly impact the ability of the Council to meet its mission-critical objectives such as providing all of the necessary support for management and staff, life safety services, etc. must be recovered in a timelier manner.
Other services, although important, may not require immediate recovery, and could be delayed in some cases.
Business Continuity Planning
Business continuity planning (BCP) is often used to refer to those activities associated with preparing documentation to assist the continuing availability of property, people and assets.
There are generally three tiers of BCPs across strategic, operational and tactical levels of the organisation.
Once the draft version of the Plan(s) is developed, it is important to train key management and staff in the applicable processes and procedures to ensure they are equipped to effectively take part in subsequent desktop exercises.
During the important phase of the BCM program, trained staff conduct specific scenario-based desktop exercises developed in relation to BCP processes and procedures.
Scenarios are to be realistic and achievable. If required, a series of exercises can be conducted, ranging from simple to contested.
Monitor and Revue
Results from the exercise phase are then utilised to amend the Draft BCP. Once completed, the Plan is finalised and disseminated to business units as required.
This is not the end of the process however. Diligent monitoring and review is required during the life-cycle of the BCM program; especially following actual activation of Plans, and subsequent lessons learnt.
Utilising current standards and best practice guidelines, MPS offers a range of operational solutions across the full spectrum of business continuity management; allowing your organisation to effectively prevent, prepare, respond and recover in the event of a potentially crippling event or disaster.
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