Data Center Dictionary: Business Continuity
Over the past few weeks, we have covered some basics, or A, B, C’s, of data centers in our Data Center Dictionary series.
Access Control (coming soon)
Today, we’re going to cover Business Continuity.
What is Business Continuity?
Business continuity encompasses the activities required to keep your organization running during a period of displacement or interruption of normal operation. It provides a complete answer to the question, “What would you do in a crisis?”
Many confuse disaster recovery with business continuity. But the two differ. Disaster recovery focuses on the technology component of a crisis. How will your systems operate? What happens to your servers when the power goes out?
Conversely, business continuity covers all business functions. Where will your employees work when if you lose internet access or phones or worse yet, your facility is damaged by a storm or fire? How will you quickly resume operations?
Some companies have business continuity plans that are not complete. In fact, 23% of big companies do not include their entire supply chain in their business-continuity plan. An incomplete business continuity plan is detrimental to continued operations after a disaster.
Why is Business Continuity Important?
When a disaster occurs, typical business operations are disrupted, and this affects the bottom line through
- Lost revenues
- Additional expenses
- Costly inefficiencies
A business continuity plan could be the difference between life and death—of your business, not to mention leaving your staff unemployed or unpaid during and after a disaster. The Millersville University Center for Disaster Research and Education reported 40 percent of businesses that do not have a business continuity plan fail after a major disaster.
How to Create Your Business Continuity Plan
At a high level, we recommend using the 6 A’s of business continuity.
- Assess – conduct a basic risk assessment
- Analyze – itemize potential risks and scenarios
- Arrange – document your contingency plans for the scenarios you analyzed
- Act – put your plan into action
- Align – measure and review the plan on a regular basis
- Adjust – adapt the plan to bolster your BC plan