Business Continuity Planning

Creating and maintaining a business continuity plan helps ensure your business has the resources and information needed to deal with an emergency. A well-designed program will help you minimize the risk of an emergency to your employees, clients and suppliers, the endurance of your business operations and your bottom line. 


Recent data reported that, “a break in continuity can cost $10,000/hour at minimum.” Therefore, not having a well developed and current business continuity plan can be a costly mistake. 


What is a business continuity plan? 

A business continuity plan is a practical guide developed by companies to enable continuous operations in the event of significant business disruptions like natural disasters and global lockdowns. Business continuity planning usually involves analyzing the impact of disrupted business processes and determining recovery strategies with management. Business continuity plans should also be appropriately documented and tested through exercises for optimal effectiveness. 


This plan aims to strengthen the defence of businesses against several potential disruptions. It also strives to maintain critical business functions during unforeseen disasters. With a comprehensive business continuity plan, leaders can ensure that despite restrictions, there would be a reduced impact on the company, its employees, and operations. 


Steps to develop a business continuity plan 

The main difference between a business continuity plan and a disaster recovery plan is that business continuity planning includes disaster recovery planning. Creating a business continuity plan seems daunting initially, especially for operations, information technology, and human resource managers, as they are often designated with this duty. 


As per the International Labour Organization (ILO), listed below are general steps in developing a business continuity plan for small to medium-sized enterprises: 


Step 1: Determine the risk profile through a self-assessment using the 4Ps framework—People, Processes, Profits, and Partnerships. 

Step 2: Identify critical products, services, or functions. 

Step 3: Establish the business continuity plan objectives. 

Step 4: Evaluate the potential impact of disruptions on the business and its workers. 

Step 5: List actions to protect the business. 

Step 6: Organize contact lists. 

Step 7: Maintain, review, and continuously update the business continuity plan. 


A business continuity policy for your company is an excellent place to start and should contain the following: 

  • A definition of business continuity.
  • A defined scope for the business continuity programme.
  • A framework for setting business continuity objectives.
  • Roles and responsibilities for the business continuity programme.
  • References to other relevant internal policies.

Possibly one of the most significant consequences of not having a business continuity plan would be the financial impact on the company. Something like a fire at the premises can result in losses leading up to millions without the additional liability costs arising from damages claims. You also run the risk of damages to your reputation, violations, closure, injury, or death, and negative impacts on overall productivity. 


If you have questions about your own business continuity plan, our team is here to help. Give us a call today, and let’s ensure you are minimizing the risk to your business and your employees. 

Back to Blog