Wake up call from BT CommSure follows Turnbull Report recommendations
All organisations which have not yet implemented a comprehensive business continuity strategy must do so now or face potentially disastrous consequences, BT CommSure warns companies today.
The wake up call, from BT’s specialists in disaster recovery for telecommunications, comes just after the introduction of new government guidelines which dictate that all FTSE listed companies must announce whether they have risk management plans in place.
The regulations, which came into effect on December 23, 2000, are based on the recommendations of the Turnbull Report, produced by the Institute of Chartered Accountants last September. The report states that all publicly listed companies should be required to ‘minimise operational risk’. This includes planning for business continuity should their communications technology fail.
David Birch, head of BT CommSure, explains: "More than 8,000 businesses were effected in the recent floods, proving that disasters really can and do strike unexpectedly. In today’s 24-hour, customer service oriented marketplace, business continuity is essential.
"Now that the Turnbull recommendations have been introduced, shareholders will see for themselves which organisations have protected themselves against risk and may, understandably, balk at investing in those that have not taken the appropriate precautions."
If that were not motivation enough for companies to introduce an effective risk management plan, recent research findings consistently suggests that following a disaster, the company that recovers in the shortest possible time will mitigate their losses to optimum level.
In the event of a communications system breakdown, both the short and long-term risks of not having fully functional telecommunications must be taken into account. In addition to the immediate problems of missed sales and service enquiries from customers, an organisation’s brand image can be damaged irreparably if the communications problems are not rectified within a very short space of time. This can have a negative effect on share value, which makes it very difficult for a company to ‘bounce back’.
John Sharpe, CEO, The Business Continuity Institute, explains: "Interestingly, despite the finding that a high proportion of businesses without continuity plans are doomed to failure should their communications system collapse, those who successfully restore their businesses have actually seen the value of their company rise."
Many organisations understand the need for business continuity planning, but are unsure which solution is right for them. BT CommSure can deliver a complete business continuity solution for businesses of all sizes with its Rapid Response agreement, offered in conjunction with Cornhill Insurance.
Rapid Response ensures that, should an organisation suffer a disaster that results in loss of telecommunications, a dedicated disaster recovery team will be on-site within 12 or 24 hours using temporary equipment to restore communications as soon as possible. In the interim BT can also arrange call handling of the incoming telephone traffic. This enables the organisation to conduct ‘business as usual’ with their customers, suppliers and business partners while the insurance claim is being settled, or while a permanent solution is installed.
About BT CommSure
BT CommSure is specialists in the provision of disaster recovery for telecommunication systems.
Backed by the full resources of BT, CommSure offers an unrivalled service to UK businesses, providing voice services, as well as business solutions for data, PCs, servers, consultancy, training and premises. Currently BT CommSure is working with around 2,000 forward thinking organisations who are proactively implementing business continuity plans.
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