Research shows SMEs are not as BC ready as they believe

Crises Control - SME Research


Research carried out by Crises Control and the Continuity Forum has revealed that while almost all SMEs agree business continuity planning is a vital protection for their business a majority are not in fact ready to effectively handle a business disruption incident. 


Crises Control, the award-winning mass notification platform teamed up with the Continuity Forum, the leading business continuity advice and research organisation in the UK, to research the SME market. The research was carried out using a mixture of in depth phone calls and an online survey.


New partner commits to SME programme

Crises Control partners with the Continuity Forum We are pleased to welcome Crises Control as the latest member of our partnership programme. 
Crises Control has recently been winning a number of awards for their mass notification platform designed for business continuity. For the Continuity Forum Crises Control is a particularly suitable partner at this time as we are stepping our work across the SME sector.
Crises Control share our commitment to work with the SME sector to improve the quality and capabilities of Business Continuity Programmes in smaller businesses. This is clearly evidenced by a number of unique features and pricing that highly attractive for the SME sector in the solutions provided.
As part of the research programme we will be undertaking new research surveying attitudes and issues in SME firms (and talking with connected stakeholders) across the sector to better understand the barriers to planning and what the top priorities really need to be. 
Continuity Forum SME research Speaking on the research programme and the new partnership, Russell Price said:
"We are delighted to have the support of Crises Control in our latest major study that is working to improve SME Business Continuity by identify the tools and resources really needed by SME's to develop better, more reliable resilience".
"Improving the quality of BCM planning across the SME sector would help transform the resilience of half of the UK economy and deliver tremendous financial and societal benefits".
"Time is precious in businesses of all sizes; our aim is that this research will identify common obstacles and barriers and produce useable and useful recommendations on the actions and resources that are needed to cost and build resilience within the SME sector".   
Announcing the partnership for Crises Control their Managing Director, Shalen Sehgal,said:
"I am delighted that we are able to take advantage of the expertise of the Continuity Forum to reach out to the SME sector and research the views on the need for Business Continuity measures. We know that every business is at risk from disruption events and that small businesses are at greater risk than larger ones of going under as a result"!
"We want to find out how SMEs themselves view this challenge and what they see as the possible benefits that technology solutions can bring to this task. Continuity Forum are just the right people to help us do this". 
If you would like know more about the research programme or get involved please get in touch here!
If you would like to know more about the award winning solutions from Crises Control click here!


Crises Control takes top prize in Cloud Excellence Awards 2018

Visit Crises Control WebsiteCrises Control has taken the top prize of Cloud DR and Continuity product of the year at the Computing Magazine Cloud Excellence Awards

Managing Director Shalen Sehgal picked the prize that is awarded for solutions that in the opinion of judges delivers the most reliable service, that innovates and provides important features that help users enhance their business resilience.  


Crises Control Takes top Cloud DR and Product of the year at Computing awards     

Crises Control is a business continuity and recovery tool whose fundamental design is based on optimising the opportunities offered by the cloud to enhance business resilience.

Crises Control - Software as a Service


This is the third award in a row for Crises Control having previously won CIR Risk Management awards in 2016 and 2017.


The Crises Control solution makes use of the Cloud by providing cloud hosted storage and uses the software-as-a-service model to ensure that the service is always available.

Critically, the system works even when the customer's own IT networks are placed out of action or inaccessible making it especially useful for organizations without deep pockets and resources. 

The Integrated system also makes use of a cloud telecommunications platform to support global multi-channel communications.

This service provides 24/7 e-mail, SMS, voice to text, push notifications and conference calls to customers and ensures that in the event of a crisis, the message will be guaranteed to get through via one or more of the channels available.

The solution provided takes mass notification a step further with easy compliance with EU GDPR reqquirements and solutions that are flexible enough to cope with large scale deployments as well as dedicated SME packages that help smaller companies develop the business resilience their customers expect without incurring time and cost usually needed to implement world class capabilities.

If you would like to learn more Crises Control have produced some useful introductory videos to provide further help and guidance.

Crises Control Video Guidance


Improving the Business Continuity capabilities of SME companies

Better engagement and services are needed for the SME sector

Small and Medium Sized business | business continuity and resilience Despite the progress made on the implementation of BCM within organizations over nearly two decades, the depth and breadth of planning in smaller firms remains a cause of concern.

These businesses are the backbone of the economy employing more people and delivering the essential ingredients of modern life in all its flavours.

Business Continuity for Dummies launched by Cabinet Office and Wiley publishing

The popular yellow cover Dummies Guides from Wiley adds a new title to the series today focusing on  Business Continuity. The Dummies Guide to Business Continuity has been published with support from the Cabinet Office especially to help support the 4.5 million small and medium sized enterprises in the UK  understand, quickly apply and gain the benefits of good Business Continuity practices.
SMEs matter and are vital in supporting their local communities cope with disasters and that’s why the government ensured that the Strategic Defence and Security Review (SDSR) committed to help SMEs improve their resilience to civil emergencies.  In partnership with the private sector, including the Continuity Forum and with sponsorship from the BCI and EPS, this new Dummies Guide aims to provide easy access to expert advice to help them prepare and cope with disruption of all kinds.

Global Continuity extends Global Assist reach with new deal

Global Continuity has signed agreements with Fusion Insurance Services and Oliva Underwriting Management to deliver Global Assist, GC's Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Solution to the SME Sector and reduces potential costs for all parties. 

CfA public consultation on National Occupation Standard for BCM commences

In August 2009 the Council for Administration (CfA), actively supported by the Continuity Forum started work on the development of National Occupational Standards (NOS) in Business Continuity to support administrators, middle and senior management in SMEs when developing a Business Continuity Plan for their organisation. Throughout the project there has been an strong interest and extensive engagement from key stakeholders with a professional background in BCM as well as from non BCM experts who are involved in a supporting capacity.

After a lot of work and many consultations we are now able to present the first draft of a suite containing ten NOS describing the functions that are needed when working at operational (supporting roles) and strategic levels.  Following long discussions we were able to incorporate the majority of recommendations made by our key stakeholders. The BCM NOS suite contains four NOS at operational level (admin support and one middle management level) and six NOS at strategic level. In time we are hoping to expand on the suite by adding new NOS as and when demand emerges.

SME's still lack Back up protection


Most small and medium-size businesses are still failing to protect their firms vital data. This is the finding of a survey undertaken by Vanson Bourne and commissioned by Acronis.

BCM for Beginners cont'd...

How to develop a business continuity plan

Who is responsible for business continuity management?

BCM has grown out of the need to provide IT disaster recovery. While this has focused on IT systems and networks, business continuity management is broader in its scope and encompasses crisis management combined with business, as well as IT resumption. Drilling down from this top-level it will involve identifying key business functions and revenue sources as well as the need to maintain the reputation of the organization as whole.

Together, these factors make business continuity management the shared responsibility of an organization’s entire senior management, from the chief executive through to the line-of business managers who are responsible for crucial business processes. Although IT remains central to the business continuity process, IT management alone cannot determine which processes are critical to the business and how much the company should pay to protect those resources.

It is important that business continuity management has the full support of an organization’s most senior committee to ensure the initiative does not stall. One member of this committee should be made the overall sponsor with responsibility for initiating BCM across the entire organization. With this top level support it should be possible for the undoubted difficulties that will be faced in putting together the plan to be overcome.

An overall BCM co-ordinator should then be appointed to report directly to the senior committee member responsible. This person is ideally someone who understands the business structures and people. They require good programme management, communication and interpersonal skills and need to be a good team leader. In addition a budget must be allocated for the initial stages of the process. For larger organizations matrix team management is the best method to approach business continuity management. The team will be drawn from existing managers within key divisions and or locations.

It is expected that they will not be full time members of the team but will need to dedicate appropriate time to the BCM process.

Business Continuity Management principles

The Business Continuity Institute recommends that the following principles are utilized when devising and implementing a BCM plan:

· BCM is an integral part of corporate governance
· BCM activities must match, focus upon and directly support the business strategy and goals of the organization
· BCM must provide organizational resilience to optimize product and service availability
· BCM must optimize cost efficiencies
· BCM is a business management process that is undertaken because it adds value rather than because of governance or regulatory considerations * All BCM strategies, plans and solutions must be business owned and driven

Bearing these in mind it becomes easier to develop your BCM plan.

Overview of the BCM life-cycle

There are five steps that should be followed when developing a business continuity management plan:

1. Analyze your business
2. Assess the risks
3. Develop your strategy
4. Develop your plan
5. Rehearse the plan

Due to the rapidly changing nature of business conditions the process is not static, but cyclical.

Once you have worked through and completed step 5 it is necessary to go back to step 1 and review the whole process again to ensure that any external or internal changes have not made elements of the plan redundant.

Analyze your business

This is the first stage of the business continuity management life-cycle as it is necessary to understand at the outset exactly where your business is vulnerable. You will need the fullest possible understanding of the important processes inside your organization and between you and your customers and suppliers.

This stage of the process will also help to gain the involvement and understanding of other people and departments and will also help identify if any parts of the organization already have plans or procedures in-place to deal with an unplanned event.

Assess the risks

There are two aspects to every risk to your organization:
1. How likely is the risk to happen?
2. What effect will it have on your organization?

Business continuity management will provide a framework for assessing the impact of each one. Many organizations usually define their assessment in terms of cost. For example:

· How much could you afford to lose if an emergency prevented you from doing business for days, weeks or months?

· How would suppliers, customers and potential customers react if your business received adverse publicity because you were unprepared for an incident?

There are three ways to work with the information you have gathered to provide an assessment of the risks.

1. Ask ‘what if?’ questions.
2. Ask what the worst-case scenario is.
3. Ask what functions and people are essential, and when.

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If you would like to know more about how your organisation can benefit from working with us, please email us HERE!


BCM Advice for beginners cont'd

Why organizations need business continuity planning

The speed with which modern business is transacted means that a disruption of only a few hours can have a catastrophic impact on the profitability and reputation of the affected organization.

Although this will have an immediate and adverse impact, it can also damage the long term viability of the organization as well.

BCM Advice for beginners

Business Continuity for Beginners

The Continuity Forum is pleased to share with you a brief overview of the business continuity management process for those new to the subject. 

UK Whiteout - SMB's need better Business Continuity Planning


With SMB's facing severe disruption the Continuity Forum asks is it always someone elses fault?

As business struggles in the face of economic recession, heavy snowfall across the UK has added to their woes, but also highlights the lack of Business Continuity Planning in most businesses.

BCM & SME's getting started

The terrorist attacks of September 11th should have been a wake call for the business community in Britain and across the world. However, nearly four years on, national surveys show nearly 49% of all UK businesses lack plans to keep the wheels turning if the unthinkable happens. Astonishingly, that number has only improved by 5% since the 9/11 attacks. Where there are plans – mostly among the larger and more regulated businesses – one fifth have never been tested.

Why has business been so slow to get its act together?

We watched as the 9/11 attacks unfurled, we watched the Madrid Bombings, we watched, as there were targeted attacks on business overseas. But an attitude of “it could never happen to us” permeated the wider business community.

Small business: A chronic lack of preparedness

Bombs, hurricanes, power cuts. What does it take to get small and medium-sized enterprises to prepare for the worst with a business continuity plan? The London Chamber of Commerce, whose members have suffered all of the above in the last 20 years, often on multiple occasions, believes that as many as 44 per cent of SMEs in the capital have no contingency plans.

Big boys pressure suppliers to get house in order

Compliance pressures have forced large companies to put disaster recovery and business continuity plans in place, and now these companies are looking at their supply chains and have identified small and mid-sized suppliers as a source of risk, according to Simon Mingay, research vice president at analyst group Gartner.

Tighter integration of the supply chains means that companies have an increased dependency on the availability of their partners' IT systems, and so big companies are insisting that smaller suppliers get their houses in order if they want to do business.

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