Most businesses have no plan for IT outages

Twenty five percent of businesses have been hit by IT and telecoms outages in the past 12 months, research by the Chartered...

Twenty five percent of businesses have been hit by IT and telecoms outages in the past 12 months, research by the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) has revealed.

Yet fewer than 50% of companies and just over 33% of small organisations have business continuity plans, according to a survey of 500 CMI members.

The research showed that the loss of telecoms links and IT capacity head the list of concerns for businesses but fewer than 60% rehearse business continuity plans at least once a year - the minimum recommended by the Business Continuity Institute.

About 83% of managers said rehearsals had revealed shortcomings which led to improvements in planning. But only 11% of firms involved board-level directors in rehearsals; 34% focused solely on recovering IT systems.

About 33% benchmark recovery plans against good industry practice, the study found, but only 14% require outsourcing suppliers to have a recovery plan: of those that do, only 39% inspect them, and 55% accept a signed statement from the suppliers. About 26% of firms work with suppliers on continuity plans.

CMI recommended that firms review the effectiveness of plans through regular rehearsals and evaluation against standards.

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