8 Common Business Continuity Plan Mistakes to Avoid

Business Continuity Plan 8 Mistakes to Avoid

Have you had a setback of some sort recently? Been hacked? Flooded? Was your Seattle business able to continue its operations? The businesses that have a business continuity plan (BCP) do. It takes a well-thought-out BCP, including managed backups,  to survive these kinds of disasters. In developing your strategy, it’s important to avoid common mistakes.

Mistake #1: Not considering the effect on your employees

When companies fail to focus on the needs of their employees, they might have a harder time getting back on track and also run the risk of creating serious safety risks. 

Make sure you plan for every situation that can affect your staff if disruptions occur, including communication protocols, evacuation routes and any other key details. This will ensure your team knows what they need to do during a crisis.

Get some input from your staff, especially about critical safety matters. Let them know you will be there for support if a crisis takes place. It helps them to know their leader cares about them. 

Mistake #2: Overlooking the small details

Probably the biggest mistake when businesses create a general BCP is failing to consider specific details. This alone can result in loss of data. 

Make sure you include the minor points into your BCP such as technology and medical aid support. 

Informing your medical providers about the plan is crucial as it enables them to make their arrangements on time. Also, tell your key personnel who to contact if they need medical assistance during accidents and determine how your team can access data securely if they cannot get to their office. 

Taking the smallest details into account can protect your data and even save your staff’s lives. Don’t leave anything to chance. Check the BCP regularly to make sure it’s not out of date or irrelevant.

Mistake #3: Keeping your staff ignorant about how the plan works

In order to minimize the impact on productivity, it is vital that you teach your staff how to execute the plan. 

Staff members are  integral to the success of your BCP. They need to know how to perform their roles correctly so they can handle their clients if your systems go down. Don’t forget about the location and schedules that will be effective if the main office is off-limits. 

Lastly, have them practice their respective tasks so they can complete them more easily when disasters strike. 

Mistake #4: Making the priority operational continuity rather than team safety

Focusing on business continuity and neglecting the effects of your staff’s safety can have calamitous consequences. Your employees are crucial to executing your BCP appropriately, so make them the first priority. Data plans that nobody can enable and expedite are useless, regardless of their effectiveness. 

It’s important that your staff feels safe and reachable after a crisis. You should be able to contact them easily and find out if you can help them. If they feel safe and backed up by the company after an accident or incident, they bounce back and resume their work quickly. 

Mistake #5: Choosing inappropriate tech solutions

Don’t wait for natural disasters to strike. Establish toll-free hotlines for employees when you develop your BCP. Set up data backups for your systems in case of data breaches. 

You could be exposing your business to higher risks, revenue loss and prolonged downtime if you don’t have the proper technology to mitigate accidents or incidents.

Consider consulting technology specialists such as SWAT or your own IT sector to verify your system has all the features and components that can keep your networks intact. That will allow you to streamline communications, minimize downtime and secure your workloads. 

Mistake #6: Having only one person manage the plan

The best approach for developing a BCP is to consult with people across all your departments to account for all contingencies. Doing it all by yourself is possible, but very  prone to error. Don’t restrict your team’s insight into all the processes. Doing so can risk the success of your plan. 

Diversity can help resolve problems and streamline your strategy. Form a BCP management team that involves multiple functions and departments in order to give company-wide perspective to your planning. 

Mistake #7: Using broad generalizations

A BCP needs to be concise and, if possible, it should explain each detail in short steps. Using broad generalizations often leads to confusion. Specific directions enable anyone to understand and visualize their roles. 

Mistake #8: Skipping over risk assessment

Risk assessments can help you discover the potential risks in your area. Don’t skip over them as they are a critical step that must take place before developing your BCP. 

Your company faces different risks depending on the size of your organization, location and activities. You don’t need to plan for disaster recovery if a hurricane hits Seattle. That’s not likely to happen. But a number of other disasters such as wildfires, floods, severe storms and droughts might. 

You know which natural disasters might hit Seattle. Develop your BCP to include them and don’t waste your time and money on those that are not likely.

The Biggest Mistake of All 

Not creating a business continuity plan is, of course, the biggest mistake of all. Don’t rely only on your disaster recovery plan. A BCP is much more detailed and features contingencies for processes, human resources, assets and partners. Some also include checklists for equipment and supplies, data backups and information on emergency responders. 

Though the contents of a BCP might be vastly different from another like company, your BCP will help you overcome various issues relative to your company and re-establish productivity to meet critical needs. However, the only way to reap the benefits of your business continuity plan is to have one.

Don’t Let Your Operations to Grind to a Halt

If you need help in creating your BCP or with other IT needs, SWAT Systems is here to help. Tap into our expertise by booking a meeting or contacting  us. We are happy to help.

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