BFM2013_3_03_Business Continuity vs. crisis management

Another Business Continuity approach focuses more on disaster recovery, to reduce the impact of any unforeseen event and shorten the time required to return to the pre-crisis level.

Crisis management stems from the need to ensure that the fabric of society is kept in place after unforeseen events whose consequences, if not managed properly, could generate damages possibly greater than the original disturbance.

A typical example is managing the aftermath of an earthquake, or trying to activate an evacuation plan.

Eventually, also the private sector started adopting a crisis management approach, extending disaster recovery from the use of redundant facilities kept available “just in case”, to the building of less-than-optimal supply chains, more resilient that a global just-in-time that ignores geo-political realities.

The main problem with this approach is that it relies mainly on special rules to be applied in special cases: this implies that significant additional costs could be required to maintain the required level of readiness.

Another pitfall is due to the perception that “crisis management” is a choice to surrender.

In reality, crisis management is a side-effect of assuming that some risks must be managed, and neither prevention nor avoidance are viable choices.