Business crisis management and business continuity both require a sure-footed, flexible capability that’s captured in a plan.
A plan must identify team members and set out their roles and responsibilities. It should also establish processes that:
- Engage the right people at the right time
- Maintain effective communications
- Manage information
- Promote timely decision making
People must be at the heart of your business crisis management planning, giving them the support they need to leverage their knowledge and experience to solve unique and challenging problems without being constrained by unnecessary bureaucracy.
A range of different plans
Business crisis management plans
The Crisis Management Team, as the most senior team, must have a plan to guide them during their deliberations. This will contain important phone numbers, details as to how to activate the crisis management process and suggested agendas for meetings; it may also contain templates for recording progress, decisions and actions.
Disaster recovery plans
The disaster recovery plan is typically aimed at recovering critical networks and infrastructure. It might also include details of an agreement with a company that provides disaster recovery sites or offices.
Business continuity plans
Various Departments within an organisation may have business continuity plans. This will provide important information to help them recover their critical business functions.
Crisis communications plans
A communications plan should detail how your organisation will prepare clear and consistent messages to internal and external audiences. It will include contact lists, prepared press releases, templates for call takers and the preferred method of media monitoring.
Bringing the plan to life
Each plan will have a different focus. The Business Crisis Management Plan provides the crisis management team with a choice of pulling on one or more levers depending on the nature of the incident. These levers being the BC Plan, The DR Plan and the Comms Plan.
In the past, plans were often huge ring-bound files that gathered dust on a shelf or cyber dust on a computer. Times have changed and when it comes to writing a plan – less is sometimes more. We often produce a business crisis management plan in the form of an aide memoir or checklist.
Over the last 15 years, Crisis Solutions has developed a series of crisis management concepts and decision support tools that are incorporated into many of our clients’ plans.
These have been tested and found invaluable during real incidents.
We are currently writing a range of business crisis management plans for a series of high profile clients.