In a review of 215 disaster recovery and business continuity plans, Janco has found that only 53 (25%) of the plans had integrated social media into them. This is surprising since social networking is so pervasive. Social media spreads word of mouth, both good and bad. Janco believes that DRPs and BCPs need to include blogs, video, and Twitter to rapidly spread information during a crisis, from earthquakes in China, to Fires in L.A., to Hurricanes in the South, and now civil unrest both here and abroad.
A decade ago few could foresee how information could spread as quickly as it does today. Social networks are powerful; they allow anyone to share –and hear– information transmitted from others in real time from anywhere. Janco has found that both true and false information is spread via social networks, in fact. There needs to be a central source which media, employees, suppliers, customers, investors, and other interested parties can get timely and accurate information.
Conversations in Facebook or Twitter (and even the re-tweet) can influence press and interested stakeholders.
Social networking enhances existing human behaviors for the need to connect and communicate during a crisis.
Assume your competitors are using social networking to monitor what your enterprise's status is. This is one of the reasons Janco recommends that Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity plans be updated to:
- Enhance Communication Plans: Just as your enterprise has an existing communication plan (often a press statement from executive management to media) understand how to re-purpose these messages and communicate them on social networks.
- Experiment and Build a Base: Enterprises should experiment with the tools to understand how to use these tools for disasters. Having a tested platform in place is mandatory in order to be in front of the issue.
- Educate, Train, and Build Awareness Before an Event. Enterprises as they test their DRPs and BCPs should incorporate social networks into the planning and execution processes. Companies need to indicate to the world what is an official channel, where people should go for news, and how each function plans to respond using social networking. These tools can help educate employees how to prepare for disasters, where to go for help, how to manage during an event, and even basic operational survival techniques.
Janco's Disaster Recovery Business Continuity Template now includes an event communications plan which is a first step in this process.
The main disaster recovery plan (DRP) template is over 200 pages long and includes everything needed to customize the Disaster Recovery Plan to fit your organization's specific requirements. The document includes proven written text and examples for the following major sections of a disaster recovery plan:
- Plan Introduction
- Business Impact Analysis - including a sample impact matrix
- Organization Responsibilities pre and post disaster - DRP checklist
- Backup Strategy for Data Centers, Departmental File Servers, Wireless Network servers, Data at Outsourced Sites, Desktops (In office and "at home"), Laptops and PDA's.
- Recovery Strategy including approach, escalation plan process and decision points
- Disaster Recovery Procedures in a check list format
- Incident/Media Communication Plan
- Plan Administration Process
- Technical Appendix including definition of necessary phone numbers and contact points
- Job Description for Disaster Recovery Manager (3 pages long) - entire disaster recovery team job descriptions are available.
- Work Plan to modify and implement the template. Included is a list of deliverables for each task. (Risk Assessment and Vulnerability Assessment)
In addition, you will find an extensive section that demonstrates how a full test of the DRP can be conducted. This section includes:
- Disaster Recovery Manager Responsibilities
- Distribution of the Disaster Recovery Plan
- Maintenance of the Business Impact Analysis
- Training of the Disaster Recovery Team
- Testing of the Disaster Recovery Plan
- Evaluation of the Disaster Recovery Plan Tests
- Maintenance of the Disaster Recovery Plan
Last, but not least, today's top compliance standards are specifically addressed. These include ISO 27000 (formerly ISO 17799), Sarbanes-Oxley, PCI-DSS and HIPAA. In total, it's a complete disaster recovery solution which will save you and your team countless hours of research and planning.
To survive an incident such as a business interruption, security breach, or a product recall, organizations need more than a successful communication strategy - they need an incident communication plan.
The overall objectives of a incident communications plan should be established at the outset. The objectives should be agreed upon, well understood, and publicized. For example, will the primary objective of the communications plan be for communications only to employees, and only during a disaster? Or is the intent to advise customers of interruptions to service? Or is it for investors and stockholders? Or regulatory agencies? Or is it some combination of these?
The specific objective of this incident communication plan is to define who will provide key communications during a crisis and the content, recipients, schedule, method of delivery, frequency and priority of the communication. By outlining communications in advance, ENTERPRISE
- Protect the effect of a crisis on employees, associates, suppliers and customers,
- Reduce the impact of bad publicity, maintain customer service, bolster relations with vendors and
- Addresses the concerns of other key stakeholders
The policy template contains a clear definition of objectives along with an easily modifiable policy statement with guidelines for:
- Media requests for information
- Editorial or letter to the editor requests
- Requests for interviews
- Emergency responses (business continuity, security breaches, and other "bad news" situations)
- Unannounced visits from media (TV reporters at your front door)
- Press releases
In addition the template includes best practices for press conferences and media relationships, as well as a 3 page job description for a Director of Media Communications.