Before companies adopted technology, business leaders relied on business continuity plans (BCP) for natural disasters and potential threats. As businesses begin to incorporate more technology into their offices, the necessity of having a technology business continuity plan increases. As we approach 2023 with more technology in our offices, the growing need for a business continuity plan is more critical than ever.
Business continuity plans serve multiple purposes, but the main goal is to allow your business operations to continue functioning during a disruptive event. A widespread disaster may knock down all your business functions. However, a BCP pinpoints the essential functions required to continue business operations and stay afloat. Historically, businesses would rely on these plans for only a few incidents, but as businesses introduce more technology into their operations, there are more risks to be aware of:
- Natural disasters
- Cyber attacks
- Power and service outages
- Human error
- Hardware failure
Ringing in the New Year with BCP tips
Business continuity plans help organizations recover as quickly as possible from disastrous events. While they are essential to any business, having an outlined technology business continuity plan saves time and money for any potential technical downfall. This article will uncover business continuity planning tips for 2023 that your business can bring into the new year.
1. Combatting cyber-attacks
A business with a cybersecurity plan has a robust first line of defense against cyber-attackers. Typically, organizations will have a 24/7 security operations center or a managed detection and response platform to prevent these breaches. However, as artificial intelligence (AI) and cybercriminals become more skilled in hacking, it’s crucial to have a technology business continuity plan in place.
A business continuity plan helps IT leaders identify the most vital business operations and technology infrastructure. A BCP prioritizes any infrastructure responsible for maintaining normal business functions and allows teams to allocate resources to troubleshoot the issue.
Many businesses choose to purchase cyber insurance for an added layer of protection. A policy that protects your company in the event of a data breach will reduce the financial burden and customer lawsuits in the aftermath. Getting cyber insurance for small businesses is more critical because these companies typically have weaker cyber security strategies, so having that extra protection will bring you peace of mind.
2. Backing up data
Another way to maximize the use of technology in your business continuity plan is by backing up your business data. It’s important to note that solely backing up data does not constitute a business continuity plan; it should only be a snippet of your entire BCP. Data backups are making copies of your original data and adding them to a second and, ideally, a third location. Some options companies opt for are backing up information to an on-site storage system, an online cloud server, and an off-site data center.
There are no specific ways companies should handle their data, but there are many backup strategies available for companies to maintain their information. For example, if you own a small business, you may have heard of the 3-2-1 backup strategy rule. This tip states that businesses should maintain at least three copies of data, save their data as two different media types, and keep one copy at an off-site location. While losing data in a disaster is a great nightmare, ensuring your business data is backed up will strengthen your technology business continuity plan.
3. Setting up a disaster recovery plan
Similar to data backups, having a disaster recovery plan is vital to ensuring business continuity but should not be the sole tactic used in a BCP. A disaster recovery plan aims to help businesses save and recover data during an unplanned event. It works alongside a technology business continuity plan, and you may have seen it referred to as Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery (BCDR). Working together, businesses become resilient and increase their odds significantly of recovering from a catastrophic event.
Finding out your disaster recovery plan is ineffective when you need it is just as worrisome as not having one in the first place. We recommend testing and making minor changes to your disaster recovery plan every year to avoid this unpleasant situation. As we enter the new year, ensuring your business is ready to face the most demanding scenarios will give you peace of mind and prepare your company for the worst.
Start the year with a robust BCP
Whether you’re looking for solutions to improve your BCP or want a fresh start for your business in 2023, business continuity plans are customizable to fit your needs. From backup and disaster recovery strategies to understanding how to combat cyber-attacks, Parried helps businesses discover what they’re looking for with our IT consulting and managed IT services. If you’d like to learn more, read about the best IT practices for 2023 with our free eBook for small to medium-sized businesses (SMB).