We are living in a digital age where businesses around the world are shifting their presence from offline to online and are therefore highly vulnerable to cyber-attacks. It has increased the need for hiring dedicated business resilience managers and implementing business resilience plans.
However, resilience is not limited to mitigate cyber-attacks alone. It also involves creating strategies to face sudden fire breaks, natural calamity, legal issues, and technology failure. But the main focus is on mitigating cybercrimes as IT integration is found at all levels within an organization.
An effective business resilience plan can help companies create strategies to face unpredicted disruptions and continue their business operations.
What is Business Resilience?
Business resilience refers to an organization’s ability to adjust to troubles and ensure that business operations are carried out smoothly. The company’s assets and brand reputation are also safeguarded.
It is more than just managing disaster and is a step ahead of disaster recovery. It focuses on creating strategies to tackle the post-disaster crisis to prevent excessive revenue loss and smooth business functioning if more additional unexpected problems occur.
A proper and comprehensive resilience plan is created that outlines strategies that enable and educate people and the company on how to face and mitigate if something unexpected occurs. The disruptions can occur in the form of cyber-attacks, market changes, consumer needs, legal agreements, natural disasters, supply chain mismanagement, technology failure, pandemics, and several other forms.
Depending on your company's size, type, and location, resilience proves to be a stepping stone to mitigate disruptions your business might face at regional, national and global levels.
Business resilience management is not limited to IT, business continuity, crisis, and risk management but involves testing resilience plans, mock-up of potential risks and their impact, and educating teams and generating ideas for regular improvements.
Hence BRM works on a cross-functional model that involves risk management, business goals, and security professionals.
Importance of Business Resilience for your Organization
Business resilience plays a vital role to enable your organization to adapt or recover from unexpected disruptions quickly.
Proper business resilience planning is required to make sure business firms can adjust to market or other changes.
Hindrance in the Implementation of a Business Resilience Plan
Flexibility in adapting to changing situations is the key to success for any organization. The inflexible approach that organizations keep on following, such as age-old methods of business operations, lack of communication among several departments, poor IT infrastructure, and stubborn management style, creates difficulty in business resilience plan implementation.
So, what is the solution?
Organizations should create a work environment that promotes healthy communication, honest feedback, IT integration within business plans, educating employees to act independently during crises, and creating a comprehensive resilience plan. If all the departments, such as cybersecurity, supply chain, and the company’s stakeholders, perform their tasks in isolation, the risk of failure during crisis increases manifolds.
What Business Resilience Planning can Include?
BRM includes business continuity planning and management, employee training and skills development, disaster recovery planning, implementing IT in business processes, among several others. Training your staff is extremely important because having employees who do not possess the right skills to handle product production or keep the production process streamlined even if the circumstances change can threaten the company.
Business Impact Analysis It involves analyzing the work culture and business goals and how disruptions can impact the functioning of the business.
Emergency Planning A business resilience plan should study the relation among several levels and be prepared not for one level but should consider all levels, such as HR, finance, IT, production, supply chain, etc.
Crisis Management There should be a separate crisis management department within an organization involved in the continuous study of disruptions and what measures a company can take to face those challenges.
Testing of Plan A plan can be successful only if it passes the testing phase. The plan should consider all the possible risk scenarios and, if they happen, how the plan created can tackle them. If the mock test plan proves to be an effective solution only, it should be considered final and undergo a revision process.
Continuous Plan Upgradation Planning is not a one-time process. The changing work environment and market trends need to be revised periodically and tested for their efficiency.
Relationship between IT Resilience and Business Resilience
Every organization must analyze the extent to which its business depends on information technology. Greater the dependency more is the need to incorporate IT resilience in the business operations. Companies now employ or hire cyber security specialists, and preference is given to candidates who hold globally recognized ISACA’s CRISC certification.
Now you may ask why only certified professionals!
When you talk of business resilience, IT or cyber resiliency cannot be left behind. The dependency on IT varies from one organization to other. But due to increased digitalization, the dependency of companies on IT for day-to-day business operations and data storage is also increasing. It shows how important IT resilience is to the company.
And during the pandemic, this dependency of organizations on IT accelerates to a great extent.
Without incorporating IT and resilience, very few businesses can survive or maintain their business functions during and after crises, such as natural disasters, fire breakouts, pandemics, terrorist and cyber-attacks.
Does your Organization needs Business Resilience Manager?
There is a need for business resilience for every organization. However, whether you need a dedicated business resilience manager depends on the type and size of the business, the level of potential risk it can face, and whether it is flexible to adapt to changes caused due to disruptions.
Need to Impart Adequate Power to Business Resilience Manager
The person appointed as the business resilience manager must be equipped with complete authority and power to act. Irrespective of the company's size or type of business, the loss caused due to any disruption can prove destructive to the company. The manager is responsible for creating a comprehensive plan that includes processes at all levels, identifying possible risks, and devising a plan to mitigate them to allow undisruptive business operations.
Business Resilience Manager Skillset
As a business resilience manager, you have the responsibility to safeguard your company against any unexpected disruptions.
So, here are a few qualities that you must possess:
In-depth knowledge of the business work culture and short-term and long-term objectives that the company wants to achieve.
Its dependency on IT and whether the present percentage of IT integration is enough to protect its assets or more involvement is required.
You must also possess strong analytical and strategic thinking skills, excellent communication skills, knowledge of risk management (preferably CRISC certified), and good team management skills.
Working experience in disaster recovery, emergency planning and handling, information security will be an added advantage.
Where to Find Resilience Managers?
To have a business resilience manager from the company itself is the best choice. They have a deep understanding of the company’s working style, its business model, goals it wants to achieve, and IT requirements.
What company can do?
Companies can conduct regular training sessions for selected employees, equip them with required skills, and educate them with the working style of other departments. They will be able to handle the situation during the crisis either temporarily or permanently without a business resilience manager.
The Bottom Line
Organizations now realize the importance of comprehensive business resilience planning at all levels to identify potential risks and mitigate risks to ensure smooth business operations if anything unexpected occur.
A resilience plan must be integrated not only to support short-term goals but also to focus on the company's long-term functioning.
Digitalization is taking place quickly, and companies are dependent on IT like never before. It has led to an increase in the rate at which cybercrimes take place. Therefore companies look forward to hiring people with globally acclaimed risk management certifications, such as CRISC by ISACA. There are several ISACA Certifications available, but CRISC is one of the most prestigious certifications that companies look for while hiring or providing facilities to their staff to upgrade their skills.
Investing in creating a business resilience plan is one of an organisation's best decisions to safeguard its business during unpredicted disruptions.