This article was inspired by the chapter on “Multilateral Continuity Planning”
by Dennis C Hamilton, FBCI Hon*, in the book The Defi nitive Handbook of Business Continuity by Andrew Hiles, FBCI.
Corporate governance is evolving through a series of codes, legislations and responses to corporate scandals.
The King III code on corporate governance has added responsibility on the organisations
to implement business continuity programme aimed at ensuring that shareholders and stakeholders interests are protected
through improved organisational continuity capability to respond to disruptions that may have the potential to disrupt organisation’s operations.
When Office of the Auditor-General performs its constitutional duties,
business continuity capability often comes into the spotlight where the ability of the Public Sector to provide uninterrupted services even in the midst of disruptions is assessed.
Various departments, provinces, municipalities are required to implement, not only the capability to recover their technological infra structure, but even other service delivery instruments such people, processes and external services providers etc.
Implementation of the Business Continuity Programmes in the Public Sector where profi t-making is not the focus but service delivery,
it is critical to ensure that there is a cushion that protects the service delivery operations or instruments from the impact of disruptive events that could disturb government efforts to deliver services to the general public.
In South Africa many government departments, provincial, municipalities and entities are introducing business continuity programmes to comply with the legislations and code of practice requirements,
but more so as an instrument aimed at ensuring that the respective organisations are prepared for, will be able to respond to and recover from disruptive events.
Critical to the organisation’s ability to respond to a disruptive event is the availability of external stakeholders such as suppliers.
While an organisation can have workable and well tested business continuity plans, the external environment
(operations of its services providers) that government does not have control over, can render such plans unworkable.
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