Unlike disaster recovery, with its focus on getting back on your feet quickly, business continuity planning is all about keeping the business going during crises.
What is it?
Disaster recovery is often seen as a two-phase process: when the system is down, it must be brought back in the correct manner and continue with the least disruption. Business continuity planning is about what happens while the system is down — using backup power, redirecting traffic, using temporary stores, and so forth. But it can also encompass non-technical matters, such as planning for natural disasters or economic storms.
As the system comes back online, seamlessly feeding the interim data so that service consumers detect a minimal impact on service.
What’s in for you?
There are likely to be compliance, liability, or insurance requirements that force you to adopt some sort of business continuity planning. This will enable you to keep your business on its feet during a crisis and keep functioning until normal operations can resume.
By planning for how to respond in the event of disruption, you save on outage costs and loss of business. You’re also protecting your brand from damage that results from downtime.
What are the trade offs?
A lot of effort can be put into making business continuity planning work for all scenarios. We suggest procedures should be worked through and prioritized using quantitative risk management principles. That way levels of continuity can be costed and built appropriately.
How is it being used?
Most digital companies, product companies and government agencies that have to provide 24/7 availability all have some form of business continuity plan.