Stay Strong: The Pandemic Is No Time for BCM Pros to Slack Off

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More companies are extending work-from-home, making it easy for BCM pros to mentally disengage. However, companies need our best efforts now more than ever. This is no time for BCM pros to slack off. This is a time for BCM vigilance.

As the persistence of the COVID-19 pandemic leads more companies to extend work-from-home, it’s easy for us as business continuity management professionals to mentally disengage from our work. As we’ll discuss in today’s post, our companies need our best efforts now more than ever.

 

 

The last few weeks have seen some significant developments on the coronavirus front. There is increasing talk of a possible second wave of infections and many companies have announced that they will push the re-openings of their offices back to the middle of next year.

COVID-19 Burnout

A new development I’ve seen in my own network is that many BCM professionals seem to be experiencing COVID-19 burnout. This is a topic I’m planning on looking at in more detail in a future blog. For now it’s enough to say that many BCM pros have fallen into a rut. The rut is a pattern of thinking that commonly goes like this:

  • My company is going to be doing work from home for a long time.
  • We’ve already solved the business continuity issues relating to work from home.
  • There is little to no risk right now.
  • Therefore no one needs me and there’s nothing for me to do.

Colleagues, nothing could further from the truth.

The World is Still Dangerous

The fact is, the world remains a dangerous and uncertain place. There is a lot more to BCM than sorting out the problems of work from home. Most of the threats you formerly worried about are still out there, with some new ones added.

The intense focus on coronavirus has created the false impression that coronavirus is the only thing we need to focus on. Well, it isn’t.

I encourage you to stay strong, hang tough, and keep your shoulder to the grindstone. Now is a time for BCM vigilance

Your company needs your best efforts now more than ever.

Five Things You Can and Should Be Doing Now

Let’s get specific. What should the conscientious BCM team be doing now, in order to stay productive and help protect their organizations?

Here are five things every BCM office can and should be working on over the coming months:

  1. Maintaining the currency of their organization’s recovery plans and documentation.
  2. Starting or restarting a business continuity and IT/disaster recovery testing program. For more information on doing this, see last week’s post by Richard Long on the MHA blog: “You Still Need to Drill: IT/DR Testing Is as Important as Ever.”
  3. Continuing to evaluate the threats and risks facing your organization, COVID-related and otherwise. For more on this topic, see these other MHA posts by Richard Long: “Distracted by COVID: Don’t Forget to Keep Tabs on Your Long-Term Risks” and “Weighing the Danger: The Continuing Value of the Threat and Risk Assessment.”
  4. Making sure you’re ready if your organization decides to reopen ahead of schedule. Many companies have announced they will not reopen until next July, but what if an effective vaccine becomes available early next year? Conceivably, this could lead to organizations reopening earlier than is now planned, possibly including yours. If this happens, you’ll need to be ready.
  5. Thinking about how the organization would respond if it was hit by another disaster on top of COVID-19. For more on this topic see this post of mine from a couple of months ago: “Double Trouble: How to Handle Multiple Business Disruptions.”

These five activities are core BCM and IT/DR functions that you can do even while most of the office staff is working from home. They provide true value to your organization and doing them is a lot more challenging and interesting than twiddling your thumbs.

A Golden Opportunity

With the pandemic lingering and many offices pushing their reopening back to the middle of next year, many BCM professionals have begun slacking off in their efforts. Their theory is they have solved the problems of work from home and nothing else matters right now. This is a misunderstanding. Everything that used to matter still matters. This is still no time for BCMs pros to slack off, in fact, it’s the opposite. Now is the time for BCM vigilance.

There are plenty of things that still need doing, including maintaining your program, conducting tests, evaluating threats, getting ready in case your organization reopens ahead of schedule and making plans for handling a double disruption.

The pandemic has caused many BCM professionals to lose motivation. However, the COVID-19 slowdown can be looked at as a golden opportunity for them to make their companies more secure and recoverable than ever.

Further Reading

For more information on BCM vigilance, managing the COVID-19 pandemic and other hot topics in BC and IT/disaster recovery, check out these recent posts from BCMMETRICS and MHA Consulting:

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