Why you need to review your business continuity plan…

Your business doesn’t stand still and many changes will take place around you every single day.

Perhaps there are new rules and regulations being introduced that directly affect your business.

Or maybe there are shifts in the wider marketplace and economic landscape, which in turn change the needs, requirements and demands of your customers.

There may be internal changes happening too, such as a merger or takeover, key members of your team leaving or joining, or the launch of a new product or service that takes your company into new territory.

You’re likely to already have a business continuity plan in place, so you’re prepared if you’re hit with unexpected disruption or disaster, such as a fire on your premises,

But when was the last time you looked at it?

The last thing you want is to discover that when you actually need to put it into practice, it’s out of date and useless in your current situation.

So as your business develops and the landscape around you evolves, your business continuity plan needs to be updated accordingly, so you can be sure it’s fit for purpose should it ever be required.

Schedule times throughout the year, perhaps every three to six months, where you can ask yourself key questions and make changes to your business continuity plan if necessary.

For instance:

Does your plan name the right people, and take into account recent departures and hires?
Does each named person have clearly defined roles and responsibilities – and are they the best people for these particular jobs?
Has each named person been given relevant training? If so, was it a long time ago or in the last year?
Is your contact list for staff, clients and suppliers up to date?
Do your current tech recovery needs match what’s laid out in your plan?
Once your business continuity plan has been updated, you can then schedule a time to test it, so you can see how it works in practice. This gives you the opportunity to identify strengths and weaknesses, and make further refinements to your plan if they’re needed.

It’s easy to sit back and think you’re ready for anything once you have drawn up a business continuity plan.

But it’s wrong to view it as something that’s set in stone.

Instead, it should be treated as a live document that evolves in line with changing business needs, customer demands and market conditions.

By reviewing it regularly and making sure it reflects your current needs and circumstances, you can be confident it will work for you should it ever need to be implemented, and that you’re in a strong position to keep trading even during a period of intense disruption.