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No matter how successful, a business operation can be easily disrupted. From local floods to office fires and power cuts, many factors can disrupt your business. Disruption to business can cost you money; increased expenses, lost revenue, and loss of profit. It can also lead to regulatory fines, create delays, and lose you customers.
Making sure your company continues to operate successfully after such an incident is where a business continuity plan can help.
So who should create your business continuity plan, and who should be involved in its development? That’s where this blog aims to help.
A business continuity plan should set out how your company will operate during or after an incident, like a disaster or emergency. For instance, putting procedures in place for employers to stay in touch with employees to continue doing their jobs in the event of a fire at the office. It should also highlight the procedures you’ll follow to resume normal business as quickly as possible.
A good continuity plan is one that’s well thought out, researched and detailed with key data and information that will allow your business to continue running successfully. Putting such a plan together should involve a series of key people.
As the owner or managing director of your business it’s your responsibility to create a continuity plan for your company. If you have set up a company with a partner, or with several people as a partnership, it’s also important to make sure you work together to create the plan.
This is important because when putting together your continuity plan you’ll need to decide on things such as a location to operate your business. Those people involved in business decisions, such as the purchase of your company premises, or the creation and development of your business plan, should therefore be included.
It’s also wise to harness the knowledge and experience of people who are fundamental to the operation of your company when creating your business continuity plan. Depending on the kind of company you operate, this could include directors or key employees with valuable experience and knowledge of:
It’s a good idea to involve these people to identify the potential impacts an incident can have if the section of the business they lead is disrupted. This process is called a business impact analysis and is a key part of creating a business continuity plan.
Amongst other things, you can use these people to gather information for your continuity plan, such as developing your business recovery strategies, validating any data it includes, and filling in any gaps in information. You can also work together to collate this information by setting up a workshop or conducting a questionnaire.
A business continuity plan is an essential part of making sure your business keeps operating should the worst happen. It’s important you have the right people, but also the right tools and support.
FSB provides members with help and advice to successfully put a business continuity plan together. This includes:
To find out more about how FSB can help your business with continuity planning, read our FSB Business Continuity page.