Selecting the Most Appropriate Business Continuity Strategies

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In today’s world, the incidence of such events as hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes, and biological/chemical/radiological attacks, successful businesses must be prepared for the impact of all threats. Business continuity and risk management (BC/RM) has been historically perceived as costly, redundant, and impractical, with only large corporations capable of undertaking such initiatives. Its importance today however has become more critical than ever. This mentality is reflected by the following examples. A recent survey conducted by the Department of Homeland Security of small business owners/executives revealed that while a vast majority (91%) felt that catastrophic disaster preparation and BC/RM was “very” or “somewhat” important, an ironically low 38 percent indicated they had any type of BC/RM in place were such an event to occur. This belief was further supported by a survey performed in Washington, D.C. at the America's Small Business Summit 2010 revealing that nearly half of small businesses are operating without a formalized BC/RM plan and lacking subsequent strategy development (Cooper). This sentiment can be correlated to that of renters who move into properties without obtaining renter’s insurance and consequent thought or consideration of the impact to themselves of the complete loss of all their worldly possessions in the event of a disaster/fire/theft. These attitudes can prove risky, costly and dangerous, and are rendered truthful by a very sobering statistic, nearly a quarter of all businesses impacted by a disaster never recover. However, the advent of new technologies and business practices can make business continuity affordable and strengthen the organization. Selecting the appropriate strategies can actually help companies become lean, improve service availability, and reduce infrastructure investment cost. It drives business objectives such as maintaining production and inventory management, tracking deliveries, completing financial...
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