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Business Continuity in the Event of a Crisis

Have you thought of business continuity in the aftermath of a disaster? After an earthquake, tsunami, power failure or hurricane, how do you rebuild, and what is the new normal?

It often takes a lot of work to return to business as usual – no matter what your goals look like. It can take days, weeks or even months to get back to something that feels like a familiar routine. Assessing the safety of all who were impacted is priority one. Once that has been assured, you can move on to the damage to equipment, property, and your day-to-day operations.

Business continuity compliance is about the plan that your organization has in place to efficiently deal with a crisis. It can bring your business back from a crisis sooner and protect your employees in the process.

Why Business Continuity Matters

Business continuity is nothing more than the ability to quickly recover following a crisis. It’s the ability to have your products and services at 100-percent availability following a disaster. Recent examples such as Hurricane Maria show us how important the necessities like running water, power, and mobile operations truly are in the fight for health and safety. Having key infrastructures operational can ensure that aid can reach those who need it.

Certain regulations may require your company to keep an emergency business continuity plan – especially when it comes to personnel safety and data recovery.

Having a business continuity plan in place can benefit you by returning your organization to a position of profitability sooner. Downtime can be costly. When you look at refineries or transportation hubs, mere hours of downtimes can cost tens of millions of dollars. Disruptions can cause hardship to stakeholders and can negatively impact your reputation.

How to Comply

You don’t have to tackle business continuity in one overwhelming sweep. It can be broken into several components:

●       Authorities – What are the key roles, and who are the authorities during a crisis? It’s important to communicate this information throughout the organization as part of a business continuity plan.

●       Awareness – All personnel need to understand their place in a business continuity plan and understand what actions are required in the event of a crisis.

●       Communication – The ability to disseminate information both internally and externally becomes crucial in the event of a disaster.

●       Strategy – Risks are identified and requirements are established.

●       Procedures – Make sure people understand what actions need to be taken in the event of a disaster.

●       Testing and drills – Make sure personnel understands exactly what the procedures are before there is ever a disaster or crisis.

●       Monitoring – This allows you to determine what success looks like for your organization. Figure out the key metrics and review them.

Automate Your Business Continuity

Blackberry AtHoc allows for the successful implementation of a strategy that can last through the entire business continuity lifecycle. There are numerous priorities through the duration of a crisis and every second is critical to ensuring a recovery. That’s why automation is critical. Blackberry AtHoc automates your:

●       List of key contacts for anticipated emergencies

●       Location of staff members

●       Secured information flow throughout the business continuity process

●       Real-time confirmation when information is received

●       Real-time confirmation of completion of critical actions

●       Alerts when information is not sent or responded to

●       Alerts when a critical action has not been taken

●       Escalation when personnel remain unreachable

●       Escalation if assigned personnel are unable to complete a critical task

When a crisis strikes, your mind will be consumed by the process. Let automation relieve you and your organization from the pressure. The more refined your automation is, the more protected you will be.

An organized plan ensures your business will be more prepared in the event of a crisis. Continuity can erode when there is a lack of key communication. That’s why a solution like the Blackberry AtHoc suite of products can help you avoid or minimize disruptions as much as possible.

Technology and Business Continuity

Technology solutions are critical to business continuity compliance. The recovery of networked communication systems ensures that the process can be addressed. Technology can save you in a crisis at times when the manual processes fail or are too slow.

Below are some of the various parts of the continuity process and the Blackberry AtHoc products that can help:

Authorities – AtHoc Suite

Awareness – AtHoc Alert

Communication – AtHoc Alert, AtHoc Connect

Strategy – AtHoc Account, AtHoc Collect

Procedures – AtHoc Suite

Testing and Drills – AtHoc Suite

Monitoring – AtHoc Alert, AtHoc Account, AtHoc Collect

Noah Webster

About Noah Webster

Divisional Counsel, AtHoc, Inc. and BBM at BlackBerry