The conference opened with Mike Rothery, from Attorney-General’s Department addressing “The relationship between Organisational Resilience and Business Continuity.”
It is wonderful when a conference starts with a message that is music to your ears;
They looked at BCM in Government and saw that it was done badly. It was viewed as simply a process to be followed, and one that could be outsourced to plan and policy documenters.
The result was a tick box mentality and plans that nobody used in a crisis.
AG’s adopted the concept of resilience as the label for their work around Critical Infrastructure rather than stay with the routine ideas of BCM.
The concept of resilience is a strategic, top-level driven activity. BC has an important part to play within the systems and structures that responsible managers will rely on to adapt to a disruption.
Mike referenced the learnings from the TISN process and the Rob Kay research which I have reviewed previously.
One important issue that arose from this discussion is that AG’s are not adopting regulatory approach to resilience. They are not advocating specific standards, and wish to avoid these doctrinal debates. Instead they encourage and actively promote collaborative and cooperative approaches to promote and build resilience. Interesting counterpoint as today is scheduled to end with a plenary session about ISO 22301.
For any readers who have Australian Government clients, would be worth looking at new Protective Security Framework which will shape how BCM will be perceived in Australian Government agencies.
The public sector delivered my next highlight, this time John Dardo from the Australian Taxation Office. John’s job title covers BCM and Service Strategy. He presented a “brave new world” of BCM and resilience where you change the processing architecture of the organisation to make it more resilient and lower the costs of workable continuity strategies.
An excellent presentation that highlighted what can be done in this space when approached as a strategic weapon, rather than an operational process.
You can only achieve this when top Executives are appropriately engaged and driving the approach and outcomes to meet business needs.
One of the ATO’s starting points was a centralised, top down BIA that significantly reduced the number of critical areas and BC plans. Also providing good input to the subsequent rationalisation of operating processes. Compare this to the more traditional model of sending out templates and asking everybody to you if what they do is important.