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What does business continuity mean for your company?

With the global rise of digital transformation, technology is now more important than ever before. That technology surge brings many new terms that we do not fully grasp. One of those is business continuity. What does it exactly mean and how can you benefit from incorporating it in your business? Business continuity can be defined as the sustainability of your core activities under unforeseen outages or service interruptions, which could be anything ranging from a power outage, natural disasters or even a critical system breaking down. Starting conversations about business continuity is fairly straightforward but requires a methodical approach so that nothing is left to chance. Many parameters have to be accounted for:
  • Asset list: Do you have an asset list? What are the most critical assets for your organization?
  • Compliance requirements: do you have to be compliant to any regulation related to your industry?
  • Business requirement: Do customers require you to be compliant to a standard in order to do business with your company?
  • Key stakeholders: Who needs to be involved in the business continuity planning?
To those parameters, you also have to add maybe the most important of all: your technology stack. The technology stack falls under the umbrella of disaster recovery, which is a technical endeavor that allows your company to continue your technological functions.

Now some key questions to include in your disaster recovery approach:

  • What technology portals are the most important to your company?
  • If one day you happen to lose power or a server, can you still access your data?
  • What is your backup strategy? Daily? Hourly?
  • How long does it take your IT Team to restore your backups?

How long can you afford to be down or unable to access your corporate data?
This last question really is the reason why business continuity is a senior management issue. At that point, we are talking about losing revenue because the company is unable to provide service to customers whether they are internal or external. When things start affecting the bottom line, the boardroom should definitely get involved.

The first step to embracing business continuity is really to start asking the business unit leaders the above questions. From there, you can now start this endeavour along your IT team, your company’s management team and, of course, your trusted technology partners.

Aziz Touré
ESI Security Specialist