To ensure any plan is practical, meets the strategy criteria and can be eased followed by staff, a testing program needs to be developed and implemented.
Initial testing of a Business Continuity Plan (BCP) or Disaster Recovery Plan (DRP) usually takes the form of a BCP/DRP workshop with the Crisis Management Team (CMT) and other important managers who will be involved in the recovery of the business. The workshop will involve a table top test based on a scenario relevant to the business and plan being tested. This workshop will allow CMT members and other important business recovery staff to learn more about the BCP document and also the actions they will need to take if a disaster event were to ever take place. This workshop will also offer an opportunity to test the plan and highlight any possible issues or errors within the plan, which can then be amended before a real disaster takes place.
As a client becomes more knowledgeable about Business Continuity Management and the plan in place within their company the complexity of tests are usually increased to further test the reliability and effectiveness of the plans in place.
Even if Standby has not been involved with the development of your current BCP we can plan and carry out effective workshops and exercises to test and enhance existing plans and also improve personnel awareness of BCP’s throughout the company.
Embedding Plans into an Organisation
Business Continuity Management (BCM) is an ongoing process and involves working with a numerous different staff members and departments throughout an organisation. To ensure every plan’s effectiveness, all personnel within the organisation need to know about the plans in place and what is expected of them before, during and after a business interruption takes place. Different personnel will require different levels of training and education about the organisation’s BCM system but it is important that all personnel are involved and the training and embedding process is always ongoing.
IT DR Plan Testing
Thorough IT Disaster Recovery (DR) testing can often be complex and may need detailed research to ensure that it does not cause any losses or impact to services for a client. Standby has planned and carried out many IT DR testing exercises as well as DR system fail over tests for clients of varying sizes and business sectors such as Finance, Manufacturing and Education to name a few. The process involves gaining a good understanding of the IT infrastructure and services, developing a business relevant scenario for the test, establishing a suitable testing window where the least disruption can occur, carrying out a risk assessment for the test as well as working with top level management to ensure approval and satisfaction.