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BC guide

In 2011, public sector strikes (affecting 55 per cent), the BlackBerry outage (39pc), and the summer riots (26pc) all had an impact on business continuity. BSI is sponsoring a report on UK business continuity for the second year. Available to download, the CMI annual survey gives insight into attitudes towards business continuity.

The 2012 report (ISBN: 0-85946-403-2) shows an increase in the number of firms with business continuity plans in place – the second year of a rise. Shirley Bailey-Wood, Director of Publishing, says: “Over the past few years, Britain’s businesses have experienced many unexpected incidents and I am sure 2012 will be no exception.  So it is very positive news that more and more organisations are addressing the issue of business continuity, with many using BS 25999 as their framework. There remains however an alarming percentage which still have no contingency plans in place.  The reality is that Business Continuity Management is not a complicated science but a critical part of best practice management and business excellence.”

The report sheds light on what can interrupt your business and the growing number of firms that were affected by these in the last 12 months. You can find out how they dealt with disruption and the lessons they learnt in the full report.

BCM adoption  
Over the past two years BCM has continued to rise with 61pc of managers reporting that their organisation has plans in place – up from 58% in 2011 and 49 per cent in 2010. In the last 12 months, 81% of managers working for businesses with BCM plans agree that it successfully reduced disruption and was worth the development cost.

Reasons for BCM
Corporate governance remains the biggest external driver of BCM with 42pc of managers saying it was a catalyst for their organisation to put plans into place. This is closely followed by customer demand (37pc) and legislation (33pc). Finally, BS 25999 remains the most popular way to assess BCM against legislation and regulation.

BCM for SMEs
This year’s report shows encouraging signs across micro and medium sized businesses with a high percentage of SMEs in the private sector where 41pc have a business continuity plan in place (up from 35pc in last year’s survey). BSI has created various business continuity standards, including those specifically designed for SMEs.

BCM Awareness
When it comes to awareness, 81pc of managers say they are fairly or very familiar with their Business Continuity Plan (BCP) but 39% admit they would need to check their role and responsibilities in the event of a disruption. A total of 47pc of managers working in organisations with BCM say they have exercised their BCP in the last year but 17pc say their BCP has never been put into action.

Disruptive events of 2011
Almost four in ten managers report that the BlackBerry outage in 2011 caused some disruption while 55pc said their organisation was affected by public sector strikes. The riots last summer caused disturbance for 26pc of managers and may also have had an emotional impact on employees. Disruptive weather was reported as causing business interruption in the past year for 49pc of managers – making it the most common cause of disruption for the third year running. However, one in ten admits they are still not well prepared for snow.

Preparing for the Olympics
A quarter of managers say their organisation allows staff to work flexible hours and 17pc allow them to work remotely. Over half of managers say their organisation does not anticipate disruption as a result of the Olympic Games but this varies greatly depending on region, falling to 24pc of managers in London.


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