The discipline of business continuity developed from the prior professional field of Disaster Recover (DR). In contrast to DR, which focuses on Information Technology professionals' efforts to restore information systems after an event, business continuity stresses the restoration of business functions after an event. These can include areas such as: accounting, purchasing, and human resources.
Educause Connect lists the following definition of business continuity as it relates to higher education:
"Business continuity (BC) can be defined as an institution's ability to maintain or restore its business and academic services when some circumstance disrupts normal operations. BC involves disaster recovery, the many activities that are necessary to restore the institution to operational status after a disaster.
BC planning is an institution-wide responsibility and needs a champion at the executive level in order to make progress. A collaborative effort is needed to do a robust risk assessment, to prioritize what business processes need to be restored in what order, and to plan and practice the steps needed to restore operations back to a working level after an event.
This integrated approach involves every department understanding and preparing for the role it will play in keeping the entire institution functional in a crisis and operational long-term. BC involves more than just traditional administrative information systems recovery; it also means planning for contingencies for teaching and research in the event those systems on which these services depend are inoperable. Academic sustainability needs to be at the forefront of BC planning. Recent incidents such as Katrina have brought BC planning into sharp focus for higher education institutions.”
-Business Continuity Planning, Educause CONNECT.
For questions or comments regarding the Business Continuity program, contact Risk Control at 512.499.4661.
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