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What Is Business Continuity Planning and Why Does It Matter?

Updated: May 21

We are so glad you asked! To better understand the importance of a business continuity plan, walk with us down the road of hypotheticality:

You are Bart, the proud owner of Bart’s Sports Championship Predictor Widgets (“Bart’s”). You are reviewing a security questionnaire from a prospective and brilliant engineering team that wants to partner with you on designing a key component of your new product.

Given the narrow windows of championship events, your prospect is particularly interested in your ability to provide services despite interruptions caused by unforeseen events (think floods, power outages, or cyberattacks). In other words, “Bart, if we are going to invest our time and talent with you, do you have a business continuity plan? We want that additional confidence in this partnership.”

Gain a Competitive Edge in the Industry

At a cursory glance, you would like to say you are fully prepared, given all the hard work you’ve done to create a successful business. However, upon further reflection, you realize you have more work. You need to take stock of your assets, where you have them, and what you would do if an event impacted any of those assets or locations.

Why? Ultimately, your business continuity plan’s goal is to have a process ensuring a way to set up your operations elsewhere within a reasonable period if a crisis strikes Bart’s. This will allow you to give confidence to investors, partners, and customers.

Moreover, you realize you don’t have to worry about your files stored in SharePoint because they are in the cloud, backed up, and protected with a managed detection and response solution for user identities. Great job, Bart! But are all your assets protected?

Incorporate Disaster Recovery Solutions

Let’s say you have a well-loved Windows server, SLEEPY, in your server room with an operating system and custom line of business software that may or may not be within vendor support. We do not judge here; the show must go on. Perhaps a piece of hardware within SLEEPY decides that 11 years of continuous operation in a room with almost no ventilation is a bit too much and it doesn’t want to play anymore.

So, it heads off to the sunset and shuts down for the final time at 3:00 AM. You get an email alerting that the server is offline, scramble to the office, and realize there is no bringing SLEEPY back from the dead for love or money. What do you do? We would not blame you if you made a cup of coffee. It’s probably about 3:24 AM at this point, and you will have a bad day at Bart’s, especially if you do not have a plan of action from here on out.

Never Underestimate the Importance of a Business Continuity Plan

The truest form of a business continuity plan simply allows business operations to continue for a reasonable period of time. This could mean spinning up a virtual server in Azure, failing over to another location, restoring the last known backup of good data to an alternate device to get the business up and running, or any number of things.

It’s crucial to know what this looks like for you—who does what, where, when, and how—in writing (just in case you get hit by a bus, a meteor, or something similar). Clearly communicating with the rest of the folks who will help you will save you tremendous time, headaches, and potential revenue. Of course, it will also impart confidence in that brilliant engineering team and potential key partner.

Don’t Wait for a Crisis To Occur

One important thing to point out is that you should not really wait until the old, tired server quits for good on you. Those things are miserable, and you have all those sports fans relying on your product to make them rich, Bart. F1 Cloud Solutions would be happy to help, in any case.

We have assisted many organizations with their emergency protocols, both commercial and in the Department of Defense space. Those plans are a bit too wordy and not really fun, but they are imperative to how we sleep at night! Why not take a peek and see how our IT solution professionals in Northern Virginia can support your company?

Who’s your favorite sports team? The consensus around these parts is currently the Washington Nationals.   

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