Being prepared for any crisis is vital to modern business operations.

Companies without a continuity of operations plan have only themselves to blame

With corporate awareness of natural disasters and business risk at an all time high, companies that don't implement a business continuity plan and face a crisis have only themselves to blame when something goes wrong. Continuity planning is becoming a vital part of enterprise operations, and firms that don't implement a strategy or hire business continuity consultants to help them implement one are going to quickly fall behind the competition if a disaster arrives.

"The repercussions for businesses without an effective BCM solution can range from loss of revenue and clients to tedious litigation and penalties. There are also personal consequences for the business leaders as they could face director or officer liability cases on the basis of negligence or criminal liability," Greg Comline, general manager of Global Continuity South Africa, recently discussed with RISKSA.

Everything from power fluctuations to a storm on the opposite coast can affect a business depending various operational factors. If a company has cloud servers hosted internationally, this presents an even broader potential scope of risk – firms need to remember that their supply chain can also affect them, and the digital age has increased these risks, as well as enhanced the opportunities for protection.

By implementing comprehensive business continuity planning practices, firms can update their risk assessment and preparedness for local and international crises to ensure minimal downtime and a smooth resumption of workflow regardless of the severity and location of a disaster. This means anything from a fire on premises, to a power outage at a data center.

Companies should invest in high-quality disaster recovery consulting to ensure their strategy meets the demands of their normal workflow and remains flexibile for future changes as well.