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What Is Business Continuity Management?

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Business owners often think of business continuity management as a form of insurance for a rare event. However, formulating a strong security management system is critical to the everyday maintenance of business procedures and can protect your company and employees.

Business Continuity Management Defined

Business continuity management (BCM) describes a series of integrated policies that keep a company afloat in the case of a disturbance. These policies include:

  • Initial or Emergency Response (steps taken immediately after the interruption)
  • Business Continuity or Relocation Response (plans for relocating staff or equipment)
  • Disaster Recovery or IT Continuity (process for assessing damage and strategizing for restoration)
  • Restoration or Crisis Management (sequence for returning to business as usual and maintaining BCM)

The combination of these methods into a single regimen is usually referred to as a business continuity plan (BCP). In many industries, such as finance, healthcare, and energy, federal regulations mandate BCPs, and failure to maintain them is punishable by law. In addition, court rulings that find that companies have failed to prepare or plan can lead to charges of negligence.

Benefits of a Reliable BCP

Keeping a solid BCP in place does much more for your company than protect it from an unlikely disaster. With proper maintenance, it can provide information about the inner workings of business operations, allowing for more extensive prevention measures and the potential for minimized financial loss. It can also protect the health and safety of your employees and increase their confidence in your business. Additionally, customers who find that the companies they patronize are open about their BCPs may be more likely to trust them and protect their public reputation in the event of an interference in business operations.

Establishing a BCP for Your Business

Designing a practical, functioning BCP may sound daunting, but it involves a few basic steps.

  1. Analyze: Identify the scope of the plan and the critical elements and operations of your business that need to remain intact.
  2. Create: Draft a plan for each step of your business continuity management approach. Identify clear roles and expectations for each department.
  3. Apply: Implement all necessary equipment and training to carry out your BCP.
  4. Test: Try each step several times to identify missing factors.
  5. Maintain: Monitor your BCP, update it regularly, and keep employees trained and knowledgeable of their roles in the process.

Planning and orchestrating a strong BCM policy requires advanced skills in the security sector. At Tulane School of Professional Advancement, we offer a Master of Professional Studies in Security Management for those wishing to protect businesses and corporations. Learn how you can pursue your graduate degree entirely online at SoPA without putting your life on hold.

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