Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Planning Checklist

Business continuity is a big deal these days, and disaster recovery plans are a key component of business continuity.

Below is a brief checklist to help guide you:

Business Continuity Plan (BCP) Project Approach

1. Business Impact Analysis

a. Review existing business continuity capabilities:

i. Evaluate the risk to business process failures

ii. Identify critical and necessary business functions/processes and their resource dependencies

iii. Estimate the financial and operational impacts of disruption and the required recovery timeframe for these critical business functions

iv. Assess the effectiveness of existing risk reduction measures

b. Compile BIA Report:

i. Financial impact of disruption

ii. Operational impact of disruption

iii. Prioritized critical functions for business continuity

iv. Recover time frames for critical functions

v. Required resources (i.e., computer systems, vital records, telecommunications and work areas) for business continuity

2. Strategy Selection

a. Identify a range of specific recovery strategies to address interruptions of production processes

b. Identify the computing resources required to recover the various distributed processing environments

c. Document alternative recovery strategies within a Recovery Strategy Selection report

3.  Business Continuity Plan Documentation

a. Create new Business Continuity Plan including:

i. Emergency notification and disaster declaration procedures

ii. Recovery team procedures

iii. Facility and business restoration procedures

iv. BCP testing and maintenance cycles

v. Appendices for master contact lists, equipment inventories, connectivity schematics, etc.

Twelve Business Continuity Plan (BCP) Components:

  1. Personnel
  2. Technology Components
  3. Data Center Recovery Alternatives
  4. Backup Recovery Facilities
  5. Geographic Diversity
  6. Backup and Storage Strategies
  7. Data File Backup
  8. Software Backup
  9. Off-site Storage
  10. Facilities
  11. Communications
  12. Other Considerations

For more on IT disaster recovery, take a look at a recent blog on the subject.

Sarah Morris is a technical writer for KirkpatrickPrice, a provider of world-class audit services. Visit


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