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Challenges to Implementing and Sustaining a Business Continuity or Disaster Recovery Plan

Note: This is the first in what will be an ongoing series of guest blog posts from wedu partners. Our intention with these post is to offer additional value to our readers by bringing the advice and opinions of experts in other areas of business beyond marketing. Today’s post is from our friends at Baker, Newman  Noyes, one of New England’s leading accounting and services firms. We hope you enjoy it. If you’d like to be a wedu Guest blogger, please email us and let us know! By Jacqueline Lynch, Manager, Risk and Business Advisory Practice Disaster RecoveryIn the current world, Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Plans are imperative to ensuring the sustainability of a business. Without a thorough plan in place, there is a high risk that an organization would not survive a business interruption. With such a great need for the plan, there still exists major road blocks to implementation and sustainability of a plan. From conversations with multiple organizations, it seems that one recurring challenge is the continued involvement of senior management and the board of directors. This issue is commonly a result of a delegation, by senior management, of the general overseeing of the project to middle management. Once delegated, it is frequently the plan for senior management not to remain actively involved; however, involvement of senior management and the board of directors should remain a priority, to confirm the plan is effectively implemented, tested, and managed. In order to ensure this occurs, an organization should develop a steering committee which is comprised of key members of management and stakeholders. The committee should meet frequently throughout the project, and upon completion, to ensure a successful and sustainable plan is implemented and maintained. Disaster RecoveryIn addition to the lack of involvement from senior management, organizations also struggle with a disconnect between the business and IT which oftentimes stems from a reactive, versus proactive, IT department. In order to ensure continued continuity throughout the organization, an IT steering committee should exist, comprised of key members of the business, to ensure that IT is taking a proactive approach and aligning their mission with the mission of the business. The committee should be tasked with creating and maintaining an IT Strategic Plan and should measure the IT department’s performance, against the plan. How does this relate to business continuity and disaster recovery planning, you might ask? In order to reduce the risk of catastrophic system issues, causing a delay or even stoppage of business, IT must remain in alignment with the business needs and goals. In order for the organization to plan for such issues, they must have comfort in the IT. Image Credits: Will ScullinJamison_Judd Baker Newman Noyes Disclaimers: Disclaimer of Liability: This publication is intended to provide general information to our clients and friends. It does not constitute accounting, tax, or legal advice; nor is it intended to convey a thorough treatment of the subject matter. IRS CIRCULAR 230 DISCLOSURE: Pursuant to requirements imposed by the Internal Revenue Service, any tax advice contained in this communication (including any attachments) is not intended to be used, and cannot be used, for purposes of avoiding penalties imposed under the United States Internal Revenue Code or promoting, marketing or recommending to another person any tax-related matter.  Please contact us if you wish to have formal written advice on this matter.
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