Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #10

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 10 Ensure your planning team has the necessary technical expertise

The business continuity program manager should obtain comprehensive business  continuity management training. They should have the skills needed to share their expertise with the team members. Project management experience or training can be a very useful but is not absolutely necessary. Designated members of the planning team should have the technical expertise needed to represent their business unit.

What differentiates the amateur from the business continuity planning professional? The professional has a clearly formed plan to create and manage the business continuity program. The amateur does not. Effective use of these ten tips will improve your program initiation  and management and help you to avoid many structural issues, costly delays and  obstacles and further demonstrate your dedication to professionalism.

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

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Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #9

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 9 Establish clear communication channels among project members

Do not allow the program to get off course due to poor communication among members.  Try to set up regular team meetings in the same location and at the same time. If possible, book your meeting room for the next year. Establish an escalation process if team members are encountering roadblocks, are not meeting target dates or are missing meetings.

Return tomorrow for our final program initiation and management tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #8

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip #8 Set realistic target dates and clear accountability for meeting them

Set realistic target dates based upon consultation with your key partners. Obtain their support for meeting these dates. Performance measurement is often missed by many business continuity programs as they overlook establishing critical success factors.

  • Demonstrate the value of your  program.
  • Indicate how you and your stakeholders will measure success.
  • Determine where you need to be in six months, one year, or even five years in order to achieve your overall goals.
  • Verify how often and in what manner you will report results to your program’s stakeholders.

Return tomorrow for our next tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #7

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 7 Lay out a roadmap for implementation of the program

Frame the implementation. It doesn’t need to be a detailed program plan (that should come later) but it has to demonstrate that you have thought things through.  Outline the program sequence including what needs to happen first and when projects will begin and end. Show how will they rollout across your organisation and indicate who will be responsible for each rollout. List any quick wins.

Return tomorrow for our next tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #6

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 6 Obtain strong commitments and adequate funding

Again, successful business continuity planning must have executive level support and commitment from key staff. This is a corporate investment and must have a budget that reflects the scope of the program. Make sure to include in your budget money for adequate exercise and maintenance programs. Staff time commitment requirements must also be laid out. Take into account any additional staffing requirement or workload redistribution where business continuity planning responsibilities are added to existing staff.

Return tomorrow for our next tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #5

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 5 Control scope and clarify objectives

Never  allow the program to become unmanageable due to a scope that is too broad or objectives that are ambiguous.

Return Monday for our next tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #4

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 4 Tie program objectives to the organization’s strategic priorities

Understand  the strategic goals and operational priorities of your establishment. The business  continuity program objectives need to fit into these goals and priorities if  you hope to obtain wide-spread upper management support.

Return tomorrow for our next tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #3

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 3 Develop a Strong Policy and Governance Structure

The policy must contain every aspect of the program including a:

  • Risk evaluation and control
  • Business Impact Analysis
  • Comprehensive set of plans (including emergency response, recovery, restoration and crisis communications)
  • Training and awareness program
  • Annual Exercise
  • Audit
  • Maintenance program

The business continuity program scope and objectives must be included in the policy. Policy language should spell-out the classical plan; do; check; act cycle and indicate that business continuity management is a continual process.

Do not forget to perform a project risk assessment. Before you start looking for risks to  the organization’s critical processes, look for risks to the success of your business continuity management program.

Return tomorrow for our next tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #2

This series outlines ten tips that can be used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 2 Establish an executive mandated business continuity program

Successful  business continuity planning must have executive level support from the  beginning. Without this any program is  doomed to failure. The business continuity program must have a designated executive sponsor who will sign-off as each milestone is reached. Ideally the  program should be visible to the board of directors or to the deputy minister through annual or quarterly reports. The project sponsors name must carry  enough political weight to open up key doors throughout the organization.

Return tomorrow for our next tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

Improve Your Program Initiation and Management Tip #1

As the foundation of Business Continuity Management at your organization, a solid program initiation can help you to avoid many structural issues later on. While you may be eager to demonstrate progress,  investing sufficient time and energy into program planning will help to avoid costly delays and remove obstacles. This series will outline ten tips that can be  used to improve your program initiation and management.

Tip  # 1 Assess current state of the business continuity program

You must be able to clearly describe where your business continuity program currently stands.

  • Clarify whether any business continuity plans exist and when they were written.
  • Examine how your organization currently manages corporate  risks and how this is evolving.
  • Determine how comfortable upper management is  with their risk management maturity level.
  • Outline what has changed in the risk  and business environment that warrants a change in the company business continuity program.
  • Find out what peer organisations are doing and whether the public, regulators or shareholders would be satisfied with your entity’s current state of business resiliency.

The  executive sponsor will need this information in order to grant robust support.

Return tomorrow for our next tip…

(For more information on DRI’s professional practices please read Professional Practice One – Program Initiation and Management DRII Professional Practices  June 1, 2012 Version 1)

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