As a business owner, you know that running a business involves constantly worrying about different sorts of risk and managing it. In fact, risk management is a huge part of what “running a business” is about.
Unfortunately, many owners and managers fail to plan for the big kinds of risk, the catastrophic events and the emergencies. Preparing for more common types of risk is easy. It’s common to spend time planning for abrupt industry changes or a large client cancelling. These are the kinds of worries that most of us are comfortable with.
However, most owners prefer not to even think about the much larger types of risk. They would prefer to ignore the kinds of risk that can destroy your entire reputation and kill your business. It’s easy to push it aside and say “that’s not likely to happen this month, I have other more urgent stuff to worry about this month”.
COVID19 has taken a lot of businesses by surprise, and has really exposed who has been prepared and who has not.
You’re not entirely wrong if you have thoughts like this. Worrying and planning about huge catastrophic occurrences can be quite a drain on your mental energy. It would take you away from the day-to-day tasks involved in running a business.
That right there is probably the number one reason why outsourcing your business continuity management is such a smart idea. However, there are plenty of other benefits, so let’s look into those today.
First things first: What is Business Continuity Management?
Let’s look at what we mean when we say “business continuity”. This term is just a fancy way to say that your core business can function even during a crisis. It would continue to render its services and deliver its products at an acceptable level.
Outsourcing business continuity management is about letting a team of experts help you craft, implement and maintain a plan that ensures such optimal business continuity. With all of that said let’s look into some more reasons why you might want to consider implementing a business continuity plan as quickly as possible.
1) It builds employee confidence and boosts morale as well as productivity
Business owners and managers aren’t the only ones who have to worry about disruptive emergencies and catastrophic events. Most of your employees have that fear in the back of their mind as well.
What if an emergency happens and this particular employee has to work untold hours to help your company weather the storm? What if something catastrophic happens, and your company loses half of the customer base overnight, and then people lose their jobs?
These are the kind of worries that most employees will have, and whether they express it or not, you can bet it affects their productivity. Having a stable level of confidence in the company improves the output of most job positions.
Furthermore, this is why employee training is such a crucial part of a proper BCM implementation. It isn’t just so that your employees know their role during an emergency. It’s also about building their confidence in the company and letting them know that their job and the company as a whole is safe no matter what.
2) It gives you a competitive advantage
One of the main reasons to handle your business continuity is that most of your top competitors have already done it. Your business is behind them, and you don’t even know it. When an emergency strikes, you will lose a lot of your reputation, as they benefit from your misfortune.
Many of your competitors, however, have no business continuity plans in place at all. Or even worse they have suboptimal solutions in place. For example, they are utilising “do it yourself” strategies.
In essence, they aren’t getting the benefits of hiring a business continuity management professional. Hence, if you outsource your business continuity management, you will instantly gain a competitive advantage over those businesses.
3) It preserves your brand and your business reputation
You know how long it takes to build up a brand and a solid reputation. Your reputation, in particular, is probably your most valuable asset as a company. While it’s hard to quantify the exact role of your business reputation in numbers, it’s most definitely a huge factor. Just consider the portion of new customers or clients who are coming to you because of your reputation. You will lose that entire chunk of customer acquisition if your reputation gets destroyed.
Alternatively, consider the number of clients that are choosing to continue working with you because of your reputation. If your reputation gets tarnished, you will lose all of these customers, practically overnight. If you were to lose your reputation, the results could be catastrophic, both losing a large number of existing clients as well as suddenly finding a massive drop in the number of new potential clients and customers.
For businesses that go through a catastrophic event without a business continuity plan, this isn’t just a hypothetical; this is a reality. Seeing the reputation you’ve built up for years vanish in mere weeks can be quite concerning.
If you take too long to handle your business continuity management and put it off, there can be severe consequences. When your brand gets tarnished, it often takes a long time to recover from the damage.
With a good business continuity plan, the impact from a catastrophic event will be minimal. You will be able to continue providing the service and products at a widely acceptable level with minimal differences in quality.
In the worst-case scenario at all, some customers might be temporarily less happy, but they will still be quite understanding and forgiving. Moreover, since you’ll recover in no time, everyone will also forget about it no time.
4) It provides valuable business data
In order to come up with a good business continuity plan and procedures, the very first thing you have do is take an in-depth look at exactly how your business operates.
What are the critical systems, which processes are primary, and which ones are secondary? Which procedures bring the bulk of your output, and which ones have a less crucial role? Asking questions like this is essential to coming up with the procedures and policies involved with tackling an emergency.
A great side benefit to doing all of this is that you will learn a lot of amazing things about the way your business works. Things that will help you fine-tune your business and improve profits in a way you didn’t even consider before.
In a word: hiring experts to handle your business continuity management brings a lot more benefits than just ensuring your business continuity. In their analysis, they will extract a lot of quality data about your business. And in turn, this data that can help you improve many facets of your business model in ways you hadn’t even considered.
5) It builds confidence among your customers
Building up the confidence that your customers have with your business is crucial in many B2B industries. If your customers depend on you, and if your product or service is critical to the business operations of your customers – they need to know you’ll be there for them at all times.
When you go out of your way to make sure that you can always deliver this service or product to your customers, good things happen. This effort increases their levels of confidence and their satisfaction with you as a provider. And in the long run, this determines the kinds of prices you can charge, directly increasing your profits.