Working together for a resilient Birmingham.


Business Continuity for Dummies

Cabinet Office, in partnership with the Business Continuity Institute and Emergency Planning Society has worked to produce the new ‘Business Continuity for Dummies’, an essential ‘survival’ guide for small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs).

Reducing the risk from emergencies allows SMEs to go about their business more freely and with confidence that they can manage challenges they may face.

Minister for Political and Constitutional Reform, Chloe Smith MP said:

Written with SMEs in mind, the guide acknowledges that smaller businesses just do not have the money, time and resources to prepare for disruptions, yet the cost of dealing with them when they do arise can be significant.

The guide provides simple, and for the most part inexpensive, ‘how to’ measures to deal with difficulties ranging from being let down by one of your key suppliers all the way through to major disruptions caused by challenges such as flooding, severe weather and a pandemic influenza outbreak.

Minister of State for Business and Enterprise, Rt. Hon. Michael Fallon MP, said:

In collaboration with the Business Continuity Institute (BCI) and the Emergency Planning Society (EPS), tens of other organisations representing or supporting SMEs have come together for the first time in this way, to support and help protect the health of our SMEs.

Jim Haywood, Executive Director, Business Emergency Recovery Group

SMEs often suffer disproportionately from disruptions of all kinds, including bigger emergencies, because many haven’t realised the impact to their business and their wider markets from disruption.  Understanding the importance of continuity and getting it right, early, can see competitive advantages and in some areas, lower premiums to pay.

Simple, practical, and low cost steps are outlined that companies can take to make sure they stand up to disruptions. Based on simple things SMEs can do to understand their key processes and vulnerabilities, these can include:

Notes for Editors

  1. As part of its ongoing work, the Cabinet Office engages with central, local and regional partners to prepare for emergencies and to coordinate the central government response to major disruptive challenges.
  2. The Civil Contingencies Secretariat sits within the Cabinet Office at the heart of central government. It works in partnership with Government departments, the devolved administrations and key stakeholders to enhance the UK’s ability to prepare for, respond to and recover from emergencies.
  3. For further detail on Contingency and Resilience:
  4. Business continuity management (BCM) is a process that helps manage risks to the smooth running of an organisation or delivery of a service, ensuring continuity of critical functions in the event of a disruption, and effective recovery afterwards. The Government aims to ensure all organisations have a clear understanding of Business Continuity Management (BCM).  For more guidance:
  5. Partner Organisations included: Aon Global Risk Consulting, Association of British Insurers, Bank of England, Barclays, British Bankers Association, British Franchise Association, British Insurance Brokers’ Association, British Retail Consortium, British Standards Institution, Business in the Community, Confederation of British Industry, Cheshire Local Authorities, CIR Magazine, City of London Corporation, Codrim, Continuity Forum, Cranfield University, Detica, Emergency Planning College, Financial Services Authority, Forum of Private Business, JP Morgan, JP Morgan Chase, Harrogate Borough Council, Institute of Chartered Accountants for England and Wales, Institute of Directors, Institute of Risk Management, Irwin Mitchell LLP, London Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Metropolitan Police Service, Olympic Delivery  Authority, Partners in Enterprise, Perpetual Solutions, Sainsbury’s, Santander, Securities Banking Industry Business Continuity Group (SIBCMG), Steelhenge, SunGard Availability Services, Tagish, T-Systems Limited, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, Department of Communities and Local Government, Department of Health.