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Assess the risks

To identify risk you must look at vulnerable areas of your business, as well thinking about more generic "what if" scenarios, such as power failing or a virus wiping out your IT system. Look for single points of failure in your technology or processes. Ask three simple questions for each risk that you identify:

  1. How likely is it to happen?
  2. What impact will it have on your business?
  3. What factors can reduce the likelihood or mitigate the risk entirely?

Always consider the worst case scenario in your risk assessment so that less serious incidents will be easier to manage. It is essential to have the support of the senior team in your organisation. It may be possible for you to convince your staff of the importance of business continuity management so that it becomes part of your day to day activity. Business continuity must be included in the preparation of new contracts, partnerships and business processes. You cannot do this alone: it is every manager's responsibility to ensure business continuity is an integral part of normal business activity.

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