As a company grows and expands, it’s important to know any possible vulnerabilities contained within the business operation. There is also a need to develop methods to minimize all identified risks. This is based on the understanding that every element of a company depends on another element to succeed. This type of valuable information is obtained when a company commits to doing a business impact analysis (BIA) report.
According to an article in ComputerWeekly, “A business impact analysis is where you research the likely impact of a disruption to your organisation in terms of loss of business, effects on your reputation, loss of staff and loss of data.”
An effective BIA will list all costs involved with a failure. This will include a loss of cash flow, impact of replacing equipment, additional salaries paid to handle work backlog and more. It will also estimate the effects of failures on a company’s profits. A BIA will identify necessary funding sources, and how they should be kept secure. It will provide information on how funds can be used to return a company to successful operation. Communication resources need to be assessed. Marketing and advertising budgets may have to be increased after a disaster to let customers know a company is still operating.
Depending on the size and complexity of a company, a BIA can require a large investment of resources. It will involve a lot of time to analyze the core functions of a business. All of a company’s support functions must also be reviewed. Some companies are able to handle their own BIA, and others hire an experienced consulting firm. The results should provided the mapping of a company’s processes as well as information obtained from interviewing key personnel. It also should involve a detailed financial loss projection chart.
IT Disaster Recovery
Part of BIA is developing or improving an IT disaster recovery plan. All possible threats to a company’s IT department must be identified. A response to identified threats must be developed. Backup systems as well as alternate methods for IT operation need to be part of the plan. IT experts outside a company are able to provide a lot valuable information. Technology utilized to recover from a disaster regularly change.
In order for BIA to be successful, it must follow a defined process. It needs to begin with individuals who understand the details of the business operation. All risks internally and externally must be identified. The chance for each risk occurring needs to be determined. The level of impact for each risk must be assessed. Internal and external resources available to address risks also needs to be identified.
Once all the information is obtained, the results should be analyzed by professionals with BIA experience. They will know if all the necessary data has been accumulated. A company’s processes and procedures need to be listed. The responsibilities of each department within a company needs to understood. Many companies regularly rehearse disaster scenarios with the participation of employees.