LOCAL GOVERNMENT FAILING TO PREPARE FOR DISRUPTION
Many local government organisations admit they are failing to prepare for disruption, despite recording a dramatic increase in the level of upheaval caused by extreme weather conditions and high levels of people and skills loss. According to a report from the Chartered Management Institute, organisations in the local government sector are ‘blowing hot and cold’ when it comes to business continuity – they pay lip service to the importance of planning for disaster, but fail to make business resilience a reality.
The Institute’s 2007 Business Continuity Management Survey, supported by the Cabinet Office and Continuity Forum, shows that despite increased disruption, organisations are failing to act to protect their key assets despite warnings about the potential effect on performance and productivity.
Managers identified traditional areas as most likely to impact on future costs and revenue. IT was cited by 64 per cent, followed by loss of access to sites,51 per cent and loss of telecommunications 50 per cent. However, reflecting concerns expressed in the recent Leitch Review of Skills, managers also highlighted fears over ‘loss of people’ 58 per cent and skills 57 per cent.
Jo Causon, director, marketing and corporate affairs, at the Chartered Management Institute, said: “Protecting an organisation’s infrastructure is, of course, vital to its sustainability. However, technology is nothing without the people who can use it and unless organisations balance the need to safeguard buildings with the need to secure their workforce, any attempt at business continuity management will remain unfinished and inadequate.”