We all know that every organization should have a business continuity plan so that in the event of a disaster downtime is minimized, data is not lost and your organization can continue to function as normal as possible. But how many organizations actually test their plans?
Testing your business continuity plan isn’t just about compliance; it’s also a very important best practice. According to a recent study by Databarracks, less than a third of respondents to a survey (29%) claimed they had tested their plan in the last twelve months. Testing most often reveals the limitations and weaknesses in your business continuity plan. These revelations help to fine tune your plan so that when a real disaster happens you are truly prepared! It is also a great benefit to your employees. If your team is well versed in the process and procedures things will run more smoothly.
What is cost if your plan doesn’t work?
- 70% of small businesses that experience a major data loss go out of business within a year (Pricewaterhouse-Cooper)
- 35% of SMBs lost as much as $500,000 over the past three years due to downtime. (Independent Oracle User Group)
- 25% of PCs will fail this year (Gartner Group)
- 24% of companies said they experienced a full data disaster (Forrester Research Study)
Why Testing is Important
- Helps validate plan content and ensure that the identified strategies are capable of providing response and recovery results within the timeframes (or capabilities) approved by management;
- Highlights weaknesses and areas for improvement, or where capabilities fail to align to business continuity and IT disaster recovery requirements; and
- Provides critical hands-on training to the personnel responsible for the response and recovery activities (which ensures an appropriate level of performance and develops confidence).
It’s better to fail the test than fail during a real life disaster – so sharpen your pencils and get testing! To get you started, read the 10 steps to great business continuity exercises by James Stevenson, MBCI
Testing your plan should also be conducted with a professional business continuity expert or consultant to maintain the integrity of your system and planning. Talk to Ancero today. We can help to create an IT business continuity plan tailored to your specific needs. A targeted plan offers you peace of mind, reduces risk, increases customer satisfaction and assures less downtime. Learn how a partnership with Ancero will keep your organization running, even when disaster strikes.