What does 2013 mean for Business Continuity?

10 Feb

 

Recently, a survey was published by Continuity Central in which business from all around the globe were asked their opinion on how they thought Business Continuity would fare in 2013. A total of 184 responses were received with over 80% of them being from Business Continuity professionals working in large organisations. The survey consisted of various questions relating to the changes, challenges and spending on business continuity measures in 2013, and how these matters would affect roll-out of business continuity packages during the year. (1) Over 85% of respondents feel there will be some level of change in the way organisations manage business in the coming year. (2)  While they considered the biggest challenge to business continuity was the availability of funds to spend on Business Continuity measures. In the current financial times, across the board many companies have seen their IT budgets slashed forcing IT managers to decide whether to thinly spread their budget over a lot of resources or invest in only ones they see as most critical to the company. The problem with spreading your budget so thinly is obvious. Trying to force your budget to cover your needs can result in a company opting for providers that do not necessarily match their needs. Conversely, cherry-picking the “most important” resources and ignoring the rest can leave an organisation grossly unprepared in areas.

Another factor which has not been lost on many organisations, particularly those on the East cost of the United States is that of what appears to be increased natural disasters. Many are still feeling the effects of super storm Hurricane Sandy last October. The results from Sandy were devastating to businesses with over 8% of the U.S. population suffering power outages. The Government declared a state of emergency and the New York Metropolitan Transit Authority to declare it the worst disaster in its 108 year history. (3) Hundreds of businesses from the online Newspaper The Huffington Post to the New York Stock Exchange were affected due to inadequate Continuity Plans in place. The arrival of another potentially devastating storm in Nemo in the past few days has only re-iterated the value of having a Business Continuity plan in place for businesses.

Among other areas to look at in 2013, many experts believe the fear of a cyber threat will become much more real over the coming 11 months. In accordance with this IT will still be dominate most BC plans but will be refreshed under big data and cloud and mobility services. Social media will continue to present both a challenge and opportunity for business continuity professionals, as it provides opportunities for early visibility of issues and effective crisis communications, while equally being a source of misinformation and a medium to fan the flames of a crisis.(4) Another source of change in the BC world will be the projected introduction of the new International Business Continuity Management standard, ISO 22301 with certificates set to be issued in several countries. These factors would seem to be dominating the expected trends with regards to BCP’s in 2013, Hurricane Sandy has given businesses a more telling insight into the value of having a BCP in place then any provider could ever hope to do and it is the loom of potential future disasters that are dominating Business Continuity issues in 2013

 

 

(1) www.backup-technology.com

(2) www.emergencyplanningsolutions.com

(3) www.thevarguy.com

(4) www.thebceye.blogspot.ie

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