The Business Impact Analysis (BIA) is one of the most important, and least well understood, stages of the Business Continuity Management Lifecycle. Cambridge Risk Solutions can demystify the process and ensure that your Business Continuity programme is built on a solid foundation.
- Identifies the activities that support the organisation’s key products and services;
- Identifies impacts resulting from the disruption to these activities and determines how these vary over time;
- Establishes the maximum tolerable period of disruption for each activity;
- Identifies all dependencies relevant to the critical activities including suppliers and outsource partners;
- Sets Recovery Time Objectives; and
- Estimates the resources required for resumption.
The first stage of the Business Impact Analysis involves identifying all the activities that are necessary to deliver the organisation’s key products and services to customers or service users. Organisations usually have a good understanding of their core processes (eg manufacturing operations) but often overlook the crucial administrative and ‘back office’ functions that support these.
Impacts can be felt in a number of ways, including:
- Direct and indirect costs;
- Damage to the reputation of the organisation; and
- Legal or regulatory impacts.
The impact of the loss of each of the activities identified above needs to be estimated as a function of time.
Planning for Recovery
Estimating the impacts over time leads to a natural prioritisation of activities from which it is possible to start planning for recovery. The final stage of the Business Impact Analysis consists of calculating the resources (including people, equipment, IT systems and workspace) required to recover each activity to an adequate level within an appropriate timescale to avoid serious, long-term damage to the organisation.
Follow the link to see a Business Impact Analysis case study.