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Thursday, 22 November 2007 03:15

Test First, Then Plan: A Unique Approach to Build and Gauge BCP Awareness

Written by  Abby S. De Lotto, MBCP

The emergency evacuation drill is something familiar to everyone. It has been embedded in our routines since grade school when we followed the teacher outside and lined up on the playground. In the adult world, most organizations conduct at least one emergency evacuation drill per year, but in today’s environment it is no longer considered child’s play. Traditionally, business continuity planners build a plan, and then test it. These tests usually include an emergency evacuation drill. But by turning the tables and testing first, then building or updating the plan later, planners can gain valuable insight into plan information and the awareness of business continuity planning (BCP) in their organization. The emergency evacuation drill offers this unique opportunity. By testing evacuee reaction to the event and capturing their innate knowledge of “what to do next,” continuity planners can affirm their current plan as well as build awareness. For new continuity programs, this approach