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The 'death of business continuity'

I have noticed recently in trade publications and social media a plethora of articles and blogs announcing the ‘death of business continuity’.

Some of the authors claiming that old school consultants and business continuity managers are burying their heads in the sand and are not being, using the current buzz word ‘adaptive’ to organisational resilience changes to the industry. Whilst others are saying that BC has become too diverse and we have lost our niche in the market. And some criticising our current methodology which according to them uses outdated practices.

In response, our ‘at the coalface’ practitioners should be revered for being at the heart of an industry that is truly making a difference globally by protecting the survivability of organisations, communities and employee’s livelihoods.

The opportunities for BC experts to develop new skill sets and determine their own futures has never been stronger. Professional development and industry training courses are rising steadily year on year, demonstrating that our specialists and their employers recognise the value of BC and the opportunities the eclectic disciplines of organisational resilience bring to us all.

I believe that one of the most exciting aspects of today’s business continuity management approaches is the flexibility it gives practitioners to develop, fit-for-their-own-organisation procedures, based on industry guidance and international standards; whilst embracing the wider aspects of organisational resilience. BC entrepreneurs can interpret professional doctrine in any way they see fit to serve their own organisations resilience needs. What other discipline gives its people such opportunities for independence, creativity and potential job satisfaction. A career that allows practitioners the prospect to work holistically, at all levels across entire businesses.

Our operating environment is moving at a faster pace than ever before and at times BC development will not be able to keep up. However, BCM is in great shape, and the BCI is driving the industry and keeping it contemporary via extensive thought leadership projects including being part of the revision committee for ISO22301, writing topical white papers and launching the industry’s most influential global publication - the BCI Good Practice Guidelines 2018, at BCI World this month.

So as Sir Winston Churchill would say ‘Criticism may not be agreeable, but it is necessary…’ in stimulating the ongoing organisational resilience debate.

James McAlister is the Chair of the Business Continuity Institute.

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