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Prerequisites for a successful business impact analysis

If you’re charged with performing a business impact analysis for your company, check out these prerequisites before you get started:

  1. Get senior management buy-in
    To do a business impact analysis properly takes time, effort and staff. Without the support of top management, you’ll have a very tough time convincing staff it’s worth their time to participate. Here’s how to get buy-in: make your case with a good executive summary, explain the process of how you’ll work with staff to gather the data you need with minimal interruption and show how the BIA can be used in other ways, like vulnerability assessment, application assessment, risk management and incident response.
  2. Make it part of the culture
    Plan to regularly revisit the business impact analysis to keep it fresh and accurate, and involve everyone in your organization in the process, from top management to entry-level staff.
  3. Keep it simple
    A simple, short business impact analysis based on good data will get the job done if it includes accurate information about your organization’s business processes, dependencies, impacts of disruptions, resource requirements and recovery time-frames.
  4. Consider having a professional lead the process
    It’s hard to get staff to see issues in light of the bigger picture, and often an unbiased third party can diplomatically steer your team towards thinking of the bigger picture.