Earlier, a disaster for businesses meant an earthquake or a hurricane or any other natural catastrophe that interrupted the continuity of the businesses. The definition of disaster for businesses was limited to natural catastrophes only because digitization was not a big part of the firms. Now, with everything on the digital platform, round the clock customer centres and online applications, even a single electrical failure can turn out to be a disaster for business. That is why dictionary.com has now added ‘business failure’ to the catastrophic event’s list that defines disaster.

Because of these issues, businesses are now investing more in the business continuity plans as continuity is the key to success in this modern era. If a business is not able to maintain continuity in its operation, then the chances of its success can reduce. Interruption in the workflow doesn’t only affect the productivity of the firm, but it also affects the effort put by employees. This is why, in this blog post, we have included the five steps for business continuity evaluation services, so that you can work without any interruption.

1. Analyze the perks of applications that are specialized in business continuity planning

By using the business continuity (BC) planning software, big companies can easily give a proper shape to their business plans. You should know that most of the companies that have an idea in place are using business continuity evaluation software.

There are many software providers in the market, like SunGard Data system that are now offering business continuity evaluation solutions for businesses. The BC planning solution rendered by these software providers will be more useful for those industries that go through regular audits like health and finance. These types of industries require consistency in how they make their plans, and that’s why business planning solution will act as a magic wand for them. But when it comes to the overall perception, then the reviews are mixed. Many people still debate over whether this solution will be useful in emergency or not.

2. Look for the significant business continuity service providers

Business availability services providers are also known as hosted business providers in most of the industries. These modern service providers offer cold sites, warm sites, and hot sites. The cold sites are the data centre spaces that are used to accommodate your equipment while the warm sites and the hot sites are ready to use data centres.

When it comes to hosted business providers then giant firms like Hewlett Packard, SunGard, and IBM Business Continuity Resiliency Services own the whole segment. But when you will move to the bigger picture and analyze the hosted business continuity provider from the aspect of mainframe-based recovery, then you will find only SunGard and IBM as the big players. This is because HP focuses on consulting services, integration and professional design. There are also some small players like Rentsys Recovery Services, that are trying to build a strong presence in the market.

3. Allow the recovery requirement to decide the levels of dedicated business continuity services

If you are planning to opt for service for data recovery that can allow you to recover your data within two to three days after a failure, then there is nothing wrong with it. But in the modern-day era, continuity has become an essential part of businesses. And, with firms looking for ways to be available round the clock, you will surely need more dedicated and advanced data recovery services. By choosing a more dedicated data recovery service, you will be able to minimize downtime and recover data without interrupting your workflow.

If you are looking forward to recovering your lost data within 24 hours, then the normal data recovery service won’t work for you, and that’s why you will need a more dedicated recovery service. You should also know that if you are using asynchronous replication or data mirroring, then you will surely need fixed assets that will be using data backup.

4. Don’t miss the emergency notification system

According to most of the experts in the business continuity services, the most important and useful part of the business continuity tool is the call system that is not manual but automated. Through the automated call system, employees, managers, directors and all other people associated with the firm can get a notification regarding the failure, and they could also be guided to the right place for reporting the problem.

You should know that the emergency notification system can be applied in a wide array of formats like text messages, phone calls, emails, and much more. Without an emergency notification system, failure will become servers, and all your efforts of maintaining the continuity in your business will go in astray. The emergency notification system allows employees and managers to take a proactive approach which is very necessary to minimize the effect of a fall.

5. Beware if your business continuity function is outsourced from another country

If you are outsourcing business continuity function overseas, then it becomes essential for you to use cautions because of terrorism and other natural disasters like tsunami and earthquake which is not a common thing in the United States. Many countries don’t have the right recovery capability to deal with emergencies as we do in the United States. That is why when you outsource business continuity function from a different country, and you increase the risk of disruption. But by taking precautionary measures and using caution, you can minimize this type of risk as outsourcing reduces the overall cost.

Business continuity evaluation is essential for every firm. Many small and medium-sized businesses think that they don’t have to worry about business continuity as they are dealing on a very small scale, but that’s not true. It doesn’t matter what the size of your business is, and which type of industry you are dealing in; you should always use the five steps mentioned in this blog post for business continuity evaluation.