In an earlier post this year, I talked about the importance of validating the Business Impact Analysis (BIA) results.
In today’s post, I want to address the actual validation process.
In small to medium-sized organizations, a Business Continuity Manager will have easier access to senior leaders in order to gain alignment on BIA results. If you work for a larger organization, you will need a defined and documented process to validate the BIA results.
First, you’ll need to work with the most senior person in your organization that speaks for or represents your team. In most cases, this is a Vice President who is responsible for multiple groups – one of which is Business Continuity.
The Vice President should have a good working relationship with the Executive Sponsor for your Business Continuity Program. These two should provide you with advice and guidance on how to best approach the Executive Team or others regarding the validation of your business impact analysis.
Which Level of Management?
Once you have determined what level of management you’ll be sharing the results with – and asking for their validation – you’ll need to work backward through the organization to determine what other leaders you’ll need to share the results with during the validation process.
For example, if you’re planning to speak with the Chief Financial Officer, you’ll want to talk with his/her direct reports who are likely VPs and Senior VPs. They will likely each want their direct reports to be aware of the information that is planned to be presented to the CFO – and we can start to see how complicated this can actually be.
Getting all of these meetings scheduled in advance at this level of management can take quite some time – and likely need to be planned out 4-6 months in advance.
What to Cover?
In each of these meetings, you’ll get around 10-20 minutes to present the BIA results and what you need from them in terms of validation and feedback. It’s also a great chance to briefly plug your Business Continuity Program.
You’ll want to share the top processes that need to be recovered, where they are located geographically, and any known risks or gaps with these processes. Dependencies such as key third-party providers (vendors) and internal technology systems or infrastructure can also be good to share – depending upon how significant they are to the top processes that need to be recovered.
Validation meetings such as these are great opportunities to educate your teams about the current state of recoverability within their area of responsibility – and a great chance to deliver key messages about your overall business continuity program.
How we can help
Finding your way through leading a business impact analysis and tying it to an effective business continuity program can be complex and time-consuming. Bryghtpath has the business continuity experience, methodologies, and solutions that can help you evaluate and mature your program.