Business impact analysis (BIA) is a systematic process to determine and evaluate the potential effects of an interruption to critical business operations as a result of a disaster, accident or emergency. Business impact analysis and risk assessment are two important steps in a business continuity plan.
During the risk assessment phase, the BIA findings may be examined against various hazard scenarios, and potential disruptions may be prioritized based on the hazard’s probability and the likelihood of adverse impact to business operations.
A detailed questionnaire or survey is commonly developed to identify critical business processes, resources, relationships and other information that will be essential in assessing the potential impact of a disruptive event.
The information gathered may include a description of the principle activities that the business units perform, subjective rankings of the importance of specific processes, names or organizations that depend on the processes for normal operations, estimates of the quantitative impact associated with a specific business function and the non-financial impact of the loss of the function, critical information systems and their users, the staff members needed to recover important systems, and the time and steps required for a business unit to recover to a normal working state.
Questions to explore during the discovery phase include interdependencies between systems, business processes and departments, the significance of the risk of points of failure, responsibilities associated with service-level agreements, staff and space that may be required at a recovery site, special supplies or communication equipment needed, and cash management and liquidity necessary for recovery. A description of the customer impact of external facing or inward facing processes, and a list of departments that depend on the process outputs.
A BIA for information technology might start with the identification of applications supporting essential business functions, interdependencies between existing systems, possible failure points, and costs associated with the system failure. When information gathering is complete, the review phase begins in consultation with business leaders who can validate the findings.
The goals of the BIA analysis phase are to determine the most crucial business functions and systems, the staff and technology resources needed for operations to run optimally, and the time frame within which the functions need to be recovered for the organization to restore operations as close as possible to a normal working state. Challenges include determining the revenue impact of a business function and quantifying the long-term impact of losses in market share, business image or customers.
The business impact analysis report typically includes an executive summary, information on the methodology for data gathering and analysis, detailed findings on the various business units and functional areas, charts and diagrams to illustrate potential losses, and recommendations for recovery. Senior management reviews the report to devise a business continuity plan and disaster recovery strategy that takes into account maximum permissible downtime for important business functions and acceptable losses in areas such as data, finances and reputation. Disaster recovery risk assessment and business impact analysis (BIA) are crucial steps in the development of a disaster recovery plan. Adapted with permission from the BCM Lifecycle developed by the Business Continuity Institute.
Detailed response planning and the other key parts of disaster recovery planning, such as plan maintenance, are, however, outside the scope of this article so let us get back to looking at disaster recovery risk assessment and business impact assessment in detail. A key aspect is to know what services run on which parts of the infrastructure, said Andrew Hiles, FBCI, managing director of Oxfordshire-based Kingswell International. Working with IT managers and members of your building facilities staff as well as risk management staff if you have them, you can identify the events that could potentially impact data centre operations. A BIA attempts to relate specific risks to their potential impact on things such as business operations, financial performance, reputation, employees and supply chains. BIA outputs should present a clear picture of the actual impacts on the business, both in terms of potential problems and probable costs.
2C Consulting’s Barnes said a key aim of the BIA should be to define the maximum period of time the business can survive without IT.
Occam's Razor by Avinash KaushikDigital Marketing and Analytics BlogData Visualization Inspiration: Analysis To Insights To Action, Faster!
A day-to-day manifestation of this love is on my Google+ or Facebook profiles where 75% of my posts are related to my quick analysis and learnings from a visualization.
It would be nice to see all the sites named, but it is kind of nice that it forces you to internalize the big ones, likely where you can have the biggest impact, and then look at the small ones. You've see the application of content consumption and keyword analysis using the Sunburst above, and the use of Treemaps by Compete.


At that time these countries had models to predict what was the cost in human lives from inaction.
At that time we could also have move the slider further ahead to model out the impact of inaction. You can see that moving in Aug did have an impact, the black line, reported cases is less worse than it could have been. You can imagine how difficult it is to communicate what is going on – even after you give them credit for the fact that they are likely rushed and are trying to do a lot more in the spreadsheet. The inaction that upsets me the most is senior executives in companies brazenly disregarding our recommendations for taking actions based on our web data analysis. The third bold conversion rate is for what we predict after the package of changes, including multi-variate testing on the lead-gen page, will deliver.
The big challenge in creating this model rests on your ability to compute the business impact of the changes you are recommending. The onus is on you though to first compute business impact and wrap it into a predictive model. What is cool about this is that we can switch the dimensions we are looking at quite easily to arrive at a more sophisticated understanding of what is going on. You can see it's power for executives under the C-Suite to slice and dice, bring their own business knowledge and context and help make more informed decisions. We've moved beyond our obsession of data capture, escaped the time suck of data reporting, we are getting better every day at data analysis. First do please share with all of us your ideas for what you would do with examples four and five. Just a side comment on your tables to present the impact of CRO using the loss-aversion cognitive bias (short story 2).
I do love your idea to add a time frame, and in the discussions we have with this model we present the time frame to impact on the business.
I use the Sunburst for keyword clusters primarily and for the MCF analysis I use the Chord which takes out some of the intermediate steps but helps visualize the starts and the ends much more effectively across channels. On a serious note, and your stress on text… I am a very big fan of stressing the value of IABI (Insights, Actions and Business Impact). A BIA is an essential component of an organization's business continuance plan; it includes an exploratory component to reveal any vulnerabilities and a planning component to develop strategies for minimizing risk.
A BIA report quantifies the importance of business components and suggests appropriate fund allocation for measures to protect them. Assets put at risk include people, property, supply chain, information technology, business reputation and contract obligations. A spreadsheet may be used to store and organize information such as interview details, business process descriptions, estimated costs, and expected recovery timeframes and equipment inventories.
Impacts to consider include delayed sales or income, increased labor expenses, regulatory fines, contractual penalties and customer dissatisfaction. The report prioritizes the most important business functions, examines the impact of business interruptions, specifies legal and regulatory requirements, details acceptable levels of downtime and losses, and lists the RTOs and RPOs. Senior managers need to review and update the BIA periodically as business operations change. But, before we look at them in detail, we need to locate disaster recovery risk assessment and business impact assessment in the overall planning process. The speed at which IT assets can be returned to normal or near-normal performance will impact how quickly the organisation can return to business as usual or an acceptable interim state of operations.


Operational and financial losses may be significant, and the impact of these events could affect the firm’s competitive position and reputation, for example. The results of the BIA should help determine which areas require which levels of protection, the amount to which the business can tolerate disruptions and the minimum IT service levels needed by the business. Number of visits, percentage of share of total visits and the percentage change (which you can discern from the color of each box, in that sense the Compete Treemap does not use color just for decoration). It also allows us to predict what would happen if we delay action, by moving the blue dot on the graph.
The graph below shows the predictions of what would have happened if aggressive intervention started in June 2014. I choose red to imply red ink in our accounting system from not doing what we are proposing! We should find inspiration from them and we should see what we can do with the tools we have access to. It comes timely in my own reflexion for the best way to communicate the potential impact of CRO on a business' bottom line. You've helped me identify that a part of our problem is that our current work does not live up to the spirit of this post. The result is a business impact analysis report, which describes the potential risks specific to the organization studied. The possibilities of failures are likely to be assessed in terms of their impacts in areas such as safety, finances, marketing, business reputation, legal compliance and quality assurance. The BIA focuses on the effects or consequences of the interruption to critical business functions and attempts to quantify the financial and non-financial costs associated with a disaster. The BIA identifies the most important business functions and the IT systems and assets that support them. The final column lists the product of likelihood x impact, and this becomes your risk factor. For example, in the Lloyd's insurance market in London, all businesses depend on a firm called Xchanging to provide premiums and claims processing.
It also does not include the other countries beyond Liberia and Sierra Leone where we know infections and deaths have occurred. The business impact assessment looks at the parts of the organization that are most crucial. A mitigation strategy may be developed to reduce the probability that a hazard will have a significant impact. Next, the risk assessment examines the internal and external threats and vulnerabilities that could negatively impact IT assets.
For example, a business may be able to continue more or less normally if the cafeteria has to close, but would come to a complete halt if the information system crashes. For example, a business may spend three times as much on marketing in the wake of a disaster to rebuild customer confidence.
A BIA can serve as a starting point for a disaster recovery strategy and examine recovery time objectives (RTOs) and recovery point objectives (RPOs), and resources and materials needed for business continuance.
The BIA should assess a disaster’s impact over time and help to establish recovery strategies, priorities, and requirements for resources and time.




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