Business continuity and crisis management

Test your business continuity plan

Once your business continuity plan is in place, you'll need to test how well it's likely to perform in the event of an emergency.

Although by their nature crises are hard to simulate in a rehearsal, you can assess your plan against a number of possible scenarios in a paper-based exercise.

Testing your business continuity plan

Think about the things that would cause most disruption and that are most likely to happen to your business. Then make sure that your plan covers each of the risks. Ask yourself the following key questions:

  • Does it set out each employee's role in the event of each emergency?
  • Have you set out the right steps to take?
  • Is the order of the plan correct so that priority actions to minimise damage will take place immediately after the incident?

Make some telephone calls to check that the key contacts and phone numbers that you have given are correct. Having to find the right number after a crisis could use up valuable time.

Keep your business continuity plan updated

Remember to update your plan regularly to take into account your business' changing circumstances.

If you move into new business premises, for example, you could face an entirely new set of risks. You'd need to draw up new maps for the emergency services and amend any contact numbers necessary.

You should test your continuity plan regularly, even if your business hasn't undergone significant changes.