“I know someone who can do my business continuity plan for half the price.” The fact is, it’s probably true. In business, there’s always someone ready to offer a solution at a lower price. Some companies make a profit out of being the low cost supplier in a particular market. With economies of scale, they can push their operating costs down way below that of competitors and still make a reasonable margin on what they’re selling. So why doesn’t this work for services for business continuity plans?
What works for turning out the same machines or parts of machines from a factory won’t work for producing a sound business continuity plan for the specific requirements of an organisation. Sometimes an enterprise can adapt to using a standard type of machine, but trying to adapt to a cookie-cutter BC plan would be a non-starter. It’s the continuity plan that has to be made according to the business, not the other way round. Even if they pursue similar goals in the market, two businesses are sure to be organised differently inside.
A business continuity plan is like a plane ticket; it has a certain price for getting you all the way to where you need to be. Buying half a ticket and having to bail out over the ocean is not an option. This doesn’t mean that all low-cost options are out. Like low-cost airlines, it’s possible to save money by cutting out “nice to haves”, but the “must haves” need to stay. For airlines, “must haves” include flight security and sticking to the schedule. For effective BC plans, examples are getting management buy-in, correctly structuring the plan, and putting the right distribution and update mechanisms in place so that people in your organisation get what they need, when they need it. So make sure “half-price” doesn’t mean “half missing.”