Business Continuity Management (BCM) is relevant to any organisation, large or small, from any sector. It is particularly relevant for those organisations which operate in high risk environments such as finance, telecommunications, transport and the public sector, where the ability to continue operating is essential, both for the organisation itself, and its customers and stakeholders.
BCM is an established part of the UK government’s preparations for managing the risks faced by organisations..
The Civil Contingencies Act 2004 recognised its importance by requiring frontline responders (such as the Fire and Rescue Service) to maintain internal BCM arrangements and by getting Local Authorities to promote BCM to commercial and voluntary organisations.
This may be the reason you are reading this information now - as many organisations are themselves important suppliers to those who have been affected by the Civil Contingencies Act.
For all sectors there is little doubt that the ability to survive an incident and be able to get back to business as soon as possible is a requirement of doing business in today’s risk averse world.
Thus the relevance to your organisation may be as simple as wanting it to be prepared. It might also be relevant to you because a new customer requires that you do it, either way it isn’t as hard or as expensive as you might expect.
Research by the British Standards Institution (BSI) has shown that while only 46% of businesses are required by customers to show they have business continuity measures in place, some three-quarters now ask their own suppliers to do the same. This makes BCM relevant to you if you are on anyone’s list of key suppliers.
It is in this context, and in the knowledge that the importance of BCM is being increasingly recognised, that BSI developed ISO 22301.
It has been proven again and again through research that using standards enhances productivity and competitiveness.
Thus you can be confident that consensus based BCM standards can make supply chains more robust, improve enterprise stability, increase job security and ensure the flow of money into communities.
BSI research reveals that for those companies which already implement standards there is an increased confidence and preparedness to manage risks such as IT failure (51% in 2006 compared to 27% in 2005), supply chain failure (45% in 2006 compared to 18% in 2005) and forced business relocation (41% in 2006 compared to 15% in 2005).
Research also confirms that having standards in place not only helps with the management of current operations, but also aids future growth.
Finally the ultimate sign of your organisation's maturity and competence in BCM will be its ability to gain certification to ISO 22301. This may not be for every organisation, but if you are in a very competitive sector and you are a key supplier to anyone then it is surely something to think about earlier rather than later. This site has been built to give you some support and advice as you move toward that goal.