Business continuity includes disaster recovery, but it covers other things as well. Disaster recovery is a very specific series of processes to recovery from a disaster. Business continuity focuses on ensuring the business experiences minimal or no downtime (with the hope that a disaster recovery process won’t be needed). Think of business continuity as a strategy and disaster recovery as a tactic. The bullets below detail the steps required to plan business continuity. Note that these steps can be used to build a disaster recovery plan too.
- Plan for an unexpected scenario. Form a team, perform a business impact analysis for your technologies, identify a budget and figure out which business processes are mission-critical.
- Review your technologies. Set the recovery time objective and recovery point objective, develop a technology plan, review vendor support contracts, and create or review disaster recovery plans.
- Build a communication plan. Finalize who needs to be contacted, figure out primary and alternative contact methods, and ensure that everybody can work, possibly from a backup location.
- Coordinate with external entities. Work with relevant external entities, such as the police department, government agencies, partner companies and the community.
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