Business Continuity and Social Media

8 Feb

Ever since the introduction of the internet, web 2.0 and social media technology has been evolving and year on year. With this in mind and with the mass number of the global population out there now using social media is it time to start thinking about business continuity and the role that social media can play. This is the area I am going to cover in next entry and again it is a topic that has yet to be covered. Social media can have a dual effect on business continuity management as it is an important issue and an enabler.

By the year 2015 around three-quarters of organisations in order to aid their business continuity management strategy will use the medium of social media. One of the main reasons for this will be communication during a crisis or disaster.

Business continuity management (BCM) teams are already being given the task of analysing the opportunities available to businesses through the use of social media to support business continuity, according to Gartner.

With the advances in technology this has helped create new challenges for business continuity and social media is one the main contributing factors to these new challenges. They provide individuals and groups to exercise a far greater influence over an organisation and its employees than ever before. Some of the media being used are facebook, twitter, linkedin, google+, youtube etc.

Social Media

The main social media channels used within business continuity management systems

 

Social media can help support activities across multiple business functions and this could mean using social media monitoring tools, tools such as ‘Yammer’ and it could also support the HR team.  The monitoring tool could be used within the PR team for scanning activity and if required flagging issues which would be relevant to a certain department. To create clarity in terms of process, responsibilities and roles of teams and individuals, a tailored workflow can be created through the use of the social media monitoring tool and the tool would also lead to more informed decisions being made by an organisation by being able to identify problems being discussed and which are the biggest issues, through the empowerment gained by nature of social media.

The use of social media could also aid the HR team in terms of being able to communicate with employees and provide better care in the midst of an incident or a disaster by allowing them to be able to contact the employee from a remote location if a face-to-face meeting is not possible to discuss the issue at hand.

The use of a tool such as ‘Yammer’ is totally revolutionising the way organisations communicate and share experiences on a global scale. This in house social media tool helps improve business processes and procedures due to the in-depth feedback and insight generated from the employees whether it is good or bad. This allows an organisation to pinpoint the areas which need to be improved which in turn will affect the BCM.

One of the primary role of an organisations BCM nowadays is to create awareness to the importance of social media across the organisation and more importantly that this is recognised and addressed in their business continuity strategies and plans.

Enterprises simply cannot afford to ignore social media as a crisis communications tool,”  “In many cases, social media may represent the only available means of locating and contacting personnel; providing stakeholders with the information and assistance they need; informing citizens, customers and partners of product/service availability; and taking other business-critical actions following a disruptive event.” – Andrew Walls, research vice president at Gartner.

 

Sources:

  1. http://www.dir.texas.gov
  2. http://www.sungard.co.uk
  3. http://www.computerweekly.com/news/2240118591/Social-media-to-support-business-continuity
  4. http://www.businesscontinuityblog.com
  5. http://www.continuitycentral.com
  6. http://www.computerweekly.com
  7. http://safeharborconsulting.biz

 

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