Business Impact Analysis (BIA)
In contemporary world, time is one of the main criteria, on which it depends, if your effort, product or service succeeds in the competition. Key is the ability to ensure uninterrupted operation of your service or supply and product support. Delay, or in the worst case discontinuity, may result in a loss of competitive capabilities and market positions, which is very difficult (if ever possible) to reverse.
From this perspective, it is important to prepare in advance for these unpleasant eventualities and to secure an alternative solution that can be used in the event of a failure of primary means used to implement routine operational tasks. Impact Analysis, is a first step in building system alternatives, commonly known under the name of management continuity (from the original BCM, Business Continuity Management); it allows the prioritization of business processes, their use of resources and their time criticality. In comparison with the risk analysis, whose priority is to fix the size of static risk threatening assets of the company, the impact analysis is to determine problems arising from the failure of processes – with a time resolution of the increasing extent of the problem.
When deciding how to minimize possible losses caused by delay or interruption of normal activities (processes), primary task is to determine how business processes are actually linked to used technology (or, more generally, to their components).
Other factors like staffing, substitution of workers, availability of alternative resources (offices, technology, transportation, energy) may play a crucial role in the optimization of spare solutions.
The content of analysis is to identify the impact of processes and components that support these processes (people, facilities, technology ...). Within each process analysis defines the maximum possible downtime (break functionality of the process – i.e. interruption of services, supplies of product ...), which won’t be yet reflected negatively on customers and stakeholders. Furthermore, there are set parameters which describe increased problem (by impact grow slope), which has caused malfunction when process exceeded the maximum acceptable downtime. On the basis of these values within the BCM process it is possible to competently decide for appropriate protective measures with optimized costs which will help to avert the threat of process failure as a whole, due to the introduction of the alternative process.
The process of impact assessment involves:
Developing a model of the processes and the supporting components (identification and evaluation of business processes and their dependence on technology and other resources)
Determination of maximum acceptable outage times of Business Processes
Identification of the size of the maximum impact on tolerated failures of processes running on the company
Recommendations to remedy – a proposal for action, able to replace the failure of the primary sources of their functions in order to avoid failure of a business process itself
Detailed identification of key processes and their weak points (in operating procedures and in the use of technology)
Basis for managerial decisions in the continuity management
Design of specific protection measures
Design of alternative processes – this can be solved in many different ways, so we suggest several options, each with different time distribution costs of such measures (e.g. investments in measures utilize the cash flow and adapt it to organization capabilities)
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