Essential Guide

Essential guide to disaster recovery and business continuity

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A guide to creating a business impact analysis for business continuity planning purposes

A business impact analysis (BIA) is an important part of your business continuity plan. Learn how to create a business impact analysis in our top five tips collection.

A business impact analysis (BIA) is an important part of a company's business continuity plan. It includes an exploratory component to reveal any vulnerabilities, and a planning component to develop strategies for minimizing risk. The result of the analysis is a business impact analysis report, which describes the potential risks specific to the organization studied.

To make conducting a business impact analysis easier, we've collected our top five tips on BIAs and business continuity planning. Learn what you need to include in your BIA, who should be involved, and how to put one together. Finally, download our free business impact analysis template and you're ready to go.

TIP #1

What is a business impact analysis?
The main focus of a disaster recovery (DR) plan is the technology, while a business impact analysis should focus on the business process and the people who perform the process. A BIA defines the priorities of business function and how soon they are required, what dependencies they may have, as well as required staff levels. The BIA also defines what timeframes are required for personnel, data etc. If you're new to business continuity planning, read this tip to learn what a business impact analysis is.

TIP #2

Performing a business impact analysis for SMBs
BIAs can be time-consuming and costly because of the complexity of large companies, which rely on dozens of core functions and sometimes hundreds of support functions. Conducting a business impact analysis is often viewed as an exercise that is exclusive to enterprise-class organizations with seemingly limitless funds for consulting services. Large consulting firms often spend months mapping every business process and interviewing numerous business unit representatives to come up with sophisticated financial loss projection charts. Small- to medium-sized businesses (SMBs) have the same requirements, albeit on a smaller scale; they must stay in business. Read these important tips for perfoming a business impact analysis for SMBs.

TIP #3

How to conduct a BIA in 10 easy steps
A business impact analysis is an analytic process that aims to reveal the business impacts that would result when a critical process exceeds its maximum allowable outage. To start, you need to understand the business operations of your company in detail. Here is a simple step-by-step approach that will put you on your way to conducting a successful business impact analysis. Learn how to create a business impact analysis in 10 easy steps in this tip.

TIP #4

Business impact and risk assessments in IT disaster recovery planning
There are many things to consider when discussing business risk assessments and impact assessments in disaster recovery planning. In simple terms, a risk assessment is a list of possible threats against an organization. This tip explores the purpose of risk assessments, the steps to take to put one together and how to review business risk assessments in your organization. Learn about business impact and risk assessments in IT disaster recovery planning.

TIP #5

A business impact analysis template: A free download and guide
SearchDisasterRecovery.com has created a free downloadable business impact analysis template to assist you in your business continuity planning. Download and print out our template, and then read the step-by-step guide below to create a successful business impact analysis. Click here to download our free business impact analysis template.

This was first published in February 2010

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Essential Guide

Essential guide to disaster recovery and business continuity

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