Business Continuity International Standard ISO 22301 Monday, 11th June 2012
The new ISO Standard for business continuity, ISO 22301 has been published in May 2012. This now supercedes the British Standard on Business Continuity, BS 25999. ISO 22301 specifies the requirements for developing and managing an effective Business Continuity Management System (BCMS). This standard is applicable to all sorts of businesses from health clubs to hospitals and from banks to book shops. RQA’s focus in considering this standard is on businesses within the food and consumer products supply chain. Our consultants assist our clients in developing business continuity plans to address property loss, supply chain issues, critical equipment failure, systems or utility outage, environmental incidents, product safety incidents etc. Click here for reasons why companies implement a business continuity management system.
In RQA we have a saying when we are developing scenarios for crisis simulations or live exercises involving the emergency services; “it's all about the planning”. This means that the more comprehensive the planning phase, the better the simulation will be and fewer unforeseen problems will arise. The same applies in Business Continuity Management Systems. Planning is an essential component and this is well covered in the new ISO standard where there is considerable emphasis placed on items such as the business continuity policy, objectives, targets, monitoring and measuring. The initial stages of developing an effective business continuity plan and business continuity management system include the following:
- planning to understand what can go wrong;
- planning to identify key processes, key equipment and systems (business impact analysis);
- planning to react if something serious does occur;
- planning to reduce the likelihood of an incident occurring;
- planning to reduce the impact of an incident if one were to occur;
This level of planning in conjunction with the monitoring and measuring ensures that senior and board level management see the positive impacts from the process start with direct improvement in the business’ resilience.
RQA work with companies in the food and consumer products sector to develop business continuity management systems that are bespoke for each business. We use the outline approach of the ISO 22301 standard and always ensure that our work meets the needs of our client and resulting plans are effective, user friendly and fit for purpose. We can also provide a gap assessment to clients wishing to attain ISO 22301 certification. Click here for more details about Business Continuity Planning.