Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Crisis Communications

The need for a crisis communications strategy and plan has never been as crucial as it is today. The catastrophic events of recent years have shown that relying solely on traditional communications tools for contacting employees, customers and other constituents in a time of need is not enough for relaying vital information. Every organization can find itself in a crisis. This week’s articles can help you handle the communications aspects of a disruption.

Many people view crisis communication as strategy for protecting corporate reputation carried out by public relations and legal – not as a strategy for rapid decision-making amongst executives and decision-makers and the rapid mobilization of response teams. (Item #1) Whatever the reason for invoking your business continuity plan, there are a number of aspects that will involve communication. (Item #2) Email's primary role as a communications vehicle means that, in an actual disaster, the inevitable outage not only hampers the running of the business, but significantly curtails the business's ability to respond and recover from the disaster in the first place. (Item #3)

These examples of inappropriate crisis communications policies, culled from real-life situations, will provide a tongue-in-cheek guide about what NOT to do when your organization is faced with a crisis. (Item #4) Here’s everything you wanted to know about the John Edwards lesson of career implosion - and what you can learn from it. (Item #5) It’s not easy to get senior management to actively support crisis communication plans. (Item #6)

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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Testing Your Business Continuity Plan

Although your business continuity plan is supported by state-of-the-art technology and superb written documentation, it could still fail if you don’t test it now and then. Regardless of how wonderful a plan may look on paper, you will run the risk that things just won’t work in an emergency if you haven’t tested the plan. This week’s articles provide some help for testing and exercising your plans.

The primary reason to exercise is to identify limitations of business continuity plans. (Item #1) What are the keys to a successful business continuity exercise? (Item #2) Planning is good, but practice makes perfect. (Item #3)

How can you make business continuity training a top priority? (Item #4) Establishing a testing and exercise program within the organization reduces the risk of failed recovery and has many benefits. (Item #5) Testing your BCP using a simulated disaster helps ensure success in the event of an actual disaster. (Item #6)  And finally, check out what a few of Attainium's customer have experienced with their plan testing and exercising. (Item #7)

You may also want to learn more about Attainium's Plan Testing and Exercising services  which range from prepackaged Conduct It Yourself scenarios to custom tabletop exercises designed for your specific requirements and delivered at your location.

The entire issue is available at

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Business Continuity / Disaster Recovery Case Studies

Many businesses are already prepared for disruptions with completed, tested business continuity plans. The case studies below could help you to plan, update or modify your strategy or plans by showing you the approach other organizations have taken in specific situations. It’s always less painful to learn from others’ experiences!

One firework could have brought down a business. (Item #1) Read about some of the lessons this company learned as the result of a disruption. (Item #2) Glasgow Airport’s business continuity management (BCM) strategy came into its own during a car-bomb attack. (Item #3)

A suspicious powder put Norwich Union’s BC plan through its paces. (Item #4) An exploding bomb put Marks & Spencer’s plan to a test. (Item #5) If you’re not aware of your critical vendors’ BC plans, take note of this case study. (Item #6)

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