26 February 2004

European differences in business continuity management revealed

European differences in business continuity management revealed:

SunGard Availability Services surveyed businesses across Europe to find out how prepared they would be if disaster should strike and confirmed that there are fundamental differences in attitudes to business continuity across Europe.

The results showed that, as a whole, businesses in the European Community are reasonably well prepared, with 80 percent of all respondents stating they had a business continuity plan in place. However, when the results were analysed by country noticeable differences became evident. While 96 percent of UK and Swedish respondents said they had a plan in place, closely followed by Germany (84 percent) and Italy (76 percent), France lagged behind with less than half of French companies questioned (48 percent) saying they had a business continuity plan.

Upping the stakes to the board

European boards appear to be taking business continuity more seriously. 84 percent of German respondents said that their board was now very aware of the need for business continuity. France and Sweden come second in the league when it comes to the board making business continuity a priority (72 percent), closely followed by the UK (68 percent).

Overall, a third (31 percent) of respondents across Europe said that a board member was now responsible for business continuity.
However, only four percent of French respondents said that a board member had this responsibility, with the bulk of the burden remaining with the IT or business continuity manager. The results also show that Swedish boards take business continuity most seriously as 68 percent of those questioned said that a board member was now responsible, followed by Germany (48 percent) and the UK (36 percent).

The top reason across all countries for the board taking an interest in business continuity was the realisation that they relied heavily on IT to remain in business. This was followed by customers starting to ask for evidence of business continuity programmes, which was compounded by increased industry regulation. However, only France (12 percent), the UK (10 percent) and Italy (6 percent) cited September 11th or the threat of terrorism as a factor that made the board put business continuity on the priority list."

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