Graphic red, blue, and yellow sign that says 'business continuity plan"

What should a business continuity plan include?

When IT issues arise, they vary widely in scale.

For example, a loss of a single hard drive in a network area storage could be troublesome to a company. In a similar vein, the loss of multiple servers could totally devastate a business.

Though one is objectively worse than the other, both require experience and effort to work through – and forethought to ensure you are prepared to do so.

Having what’s known as a “business continuity plan” means having structured plans developed with the help of experts to target what you specifically need before, during and after an issue to keep your company running, regardless of the problem.

There are four main things that a successful business continuity plan should include.

First Up: An Outline of the Plan

Prior to any action, your business must undergo a critical analysis.

This analysis will cover where your most critical services are, and what they need to be operational. It will also require an escalation list for important points of contact within your company.

Stemming from the analysis, your business continuity plan will require a detailed outline. During the creation of the plan, you must keep in mind that the goal of the plan is to keep your business operations running after the event of a disaster.

Did you know? Only 35% of outages are caused by natural disasters. Another 45% are operational, and 19% are due to human error.

Additionally, the plan needs to prevent and mitigate any negative consequences that occur as a result of a disaster.

Secondly: Implement the Required Technologies

It’s unlikely that your organization already has everything it needs for the business continuity plan. More often than not, it will require you to purchase more physical machines.

For example, if your plan includes the implementation of a physical backup of your company data, you will need to purchase a network storage device.

These new technologies require constant technical tweaking and perfection. After all, every business operates differently, so no two configurations will be exactly alike.

Thirdly: Train the Team

No plan can ever be effective without training the people that will carry it out. Once you’ve implemented any technology that you need to be successful, you’re going to need to assemble a designated team to carry out recovery operations.

Did you know? 40-60% of small businesses who lose access to operational systems and data without a business continuity plan close their doors forever.

It’s helpful to break that out by role. For example, one person may be responsible for getting the phone systems back online, while another is responsible for ensuring that a remote workspace is up and running before your team moves into it.

Depending on your specific needs, the team will need various forms of training to ensure that they can do their jobs without any issue.

Finally: Test the Plan

Naturally, you’ll want to test the plan for functionality. You should test your plan on a set schedule every 6 months or so to check for operational capacity. Then you will want to update it as changes in your setup and personnel require.

What’s the point of having a business continuity plan if you don’t know if or how well it works?

With regular testing, you achieve peace of mind by knowing that if a disaster occurs, you’ll be able to bounce back quickly.

Plan Ahead with Michell

Building your business continuity plan isn’t as simple as having a data backup solution. It requires meticulous planning and thorough testing. Creating it alone can be stressful and tedious.

Thankfully, we’re here to help. When you partner with us, you’ll be backed by a team of dedicated experts who have created many successful business continuity plans. We’ll work together to develop an exceptional plan that will have you back up and running in hours, not days.

Don’t wait until disaster strikes. Contact us today to plan ahead for your organization’s future.