02 February 2004

Plot, Shield and Stay alive ... contingency planning

IT-Analysis.com- Plot, Shield and Stay alive ... contingency planning:

Aneet Shah
Bloor Research

There is a need for business units and their line managers to work with risk professionals within the financial institutions to make contingency plans to address the risks their company faces. Contingency planning is not just a key issue for risk managers in a business; it is the issue that brings the risk professionals together with line managers to deliver practical ways to tackle their organisations' risks.

Why is contingency planning important? Sound contingency planning is a must because it protects the organisation's balance sheet, infrastructure and business. It is an essential component of short-term plans covering emergency response and crisis management and medium term business continuity planning. It has become an important factor in getting insurance cover for the business as well as reducing the premiums!

Insurance is not the only factor to be considering in addressing contingency planning. It is also about protecting the company's assets, reputation and shareholder value. As part of contingency planning, having the plan and sufficient funds is not enough, there is a need for broader comprehensive business continuity strategy encompassing not just the business operations and infrastructure. For example what impact would badly managed communications in the event of an interruption have on reputation?

Thus from a business perspective, lack of contingency planning has three major pain points - external image, insurance and internally - business assets, balance sheet and resources. So what should be done to develop a good contingency plan?"

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