Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Planning
In today’s real-time world, Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Planning have taken on a heightened level of importance. Companies and their customers depend on systems and functions being available. We have years of experience in Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Planning and can assist in the following areas:
- Business Impact Analysis (BIA) and Risk Assessment - A thorough business impact analysis and risk assessment are the foundation of an effective BCP.A complete BIA includes identification of the potential impact of uncontrolled, nonspecific events on the institution’s business processes and its customers, consideration of all departments and business functions, not just data processing, and an estimation of maximum allowable downtime and acceptable levels of data, operations and financial losses.
The risk assessment is the second step in developing a BCP. It includes prioritizing of potential business disruptions based upon severity and likelihood of occurrence, a gap analysis comparing the institution’s existing BCP, if any, to what is necessary to achieve recovery time and recovery point objectives, and an analysis of the threat’s based upon the impact on the institution, its customers, and the financial markets, not just the nature of the threat.
- Developing Business Continuity Strategies - Determining and guiding the selection of alternative business recovery operating strategies for recovery of business and information technologies within the recovery time objective, while maintaining the organization’s critical functions.
- Emergency Response and Operations – Developing and implementing processes and procedures for responding to and stabilizing the situation following an incident or event.
- Develop and Implement Business Continuity Processes and Procedures – Design, develop, and implement Business Continuity processes and procedures that provide continuity within the recovery time and recovery point objectives.
- Awareness and Training Programs – Prepare a program to create and maintain corporate awareness and enhance the skills required to develop and implement the Business Continuity Plan and its supporting activities.
- Maintaining and Exercising Business Continuity Plans – The effectiveness of a BCP can only be validated through testing or practical application. We can assist through the entire testing process. From developing a testing strategy, to developing test objectives and test plans, to actually performing the tests and documenting the result. Our years of experience in Quality Assurance and Testing make us a natural for this activity.
- Public Relations and Crisis Communication – Assist in developing, coordinating, evaluating, and exercising plans to communicate with internal stakeholders (employees, corporate management, etc.) external stakeholders (customers, shareholders, vendors, suppliers, etc.) and the media (print, radio, television, Internet, etc.)
- External Audit of Existing Business Continuity Plan – The BCP and any associated test results should be subjected to an independent audit. For some institutions, federal regulations require that BCP be independently audited and verified. Following federal guideline, we can objectively evaluate the completeness and effectiveness of a documented BCP.