Testing & Training

Having a business continuity plan that has not been tested might do you more harm than good. Everything can fall apart if people don't know what they are supposed to do or elements of the plan don't work. Soooo... we really cannot say this enough: Test your plan and train your people so everyone will have confidence that the plan will work.

Having a team well versed in the initial steps of the BC/DR plan will help to ensure an effective and early response. (Item #1)     A plan is not a plan until it has been tested; it is only theory. (Item #2)     Here are six BC/DR best practices from the trenches that will keep you moving forward no matter what outage, incident, or disaster may strike. (Item #3)    

Are you part of the 70% of companies that do NOT test their business continuity plans? It's time, then. (Item #4)     Business continuity drills are the key to detect, address, and strengthen that weakest link. (Item #5)     Here's how to put your plan to the test. (Item #6)    

As always, I look forward to hearing about your concerns with regard to business continuity. If there are any topics that you'd like to see covered, email me at bmellinger@attainium.net.

Bob Mellinger, President
Attainium Corp

1. Testing and Training for Business Continuity or Disaster Recovery

After you have spent the time needed to develop Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery plans, training and testing are your next steps. Training those who will use the plan, especially secondary resources who may not have participated in its development, is critical to the success of your efforts, as is the validation of the functional capability and accuracy of your plans

2. Business Continuity Training and Testing: Narrowing the Gaps

A program of training, exercises, and tests, moves plans beyond the concept stage, provides training opportunities for employees, and helps identify needed corrections in procedures and plans. All employees are critical to the success of your Business Continuity Program and need to receive the appropriate level of education and training.

3. Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Best Practices from The Availability Trenches

This author would like to save you some of the blood, sweat, and tears he has experienced along the way by sharing with you these six valuable lessons-learned from the trenches. These are lessons that may seem like common sense... but you'd be surprised how many people ignore them and fail.

4. Is It Time to Test Your BC/DR Plan?

Every business needs a "Business Continuity/Disaster Recovery" (BC/DR) Plan. But what good is it if people don't know what to do when disaster strikes? The truth is that you can't really know if your plan works without running through a disaster simulation. And since data suggests only 30% of companies test their BC/DR plans, there is definitely room for improvement.

5. Strengthening the Business Continuity Process with Methodical Drills

Why drills? Without a solid drill plan in place, the business continuity team can never provide the needed assurance that organizations' critical services will be available at all times. With periodic drills you could ascertain how effective each component of the business continuity plan is and identify gaps needed to be addressed. With today's growing system dependencies, it becomes an increasingly difficult task to verify the business continuity drills are effectively productive. That would mean business continuity drills are conducted methodically to touch each service, its dependences, and the gaps identified in these drills are not only addressed but also re-tested, in a drill, to determine their effectiveness.

6. How to test a business continuity plan

A strong business continuity plan is a necessity but simply planning isn't enough. The plan has to be tested before it can be finalized. Without testing, your company runs the risk of doing something that may actually hurt your business rather than help it when you need it most.

Quote of the Week:

"A 'passing' test doesn't mean 'no problem.' It means no problem *observed*. This time. With these inputs. So far. On my machine."

-- Michael Bolton

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