Washington, D.C. (PRWEB) April 4, 2006
Events such as Hurricane Katrina, the New York transit strike and the wildfires in Texas result not only in significant personal loss for those affected, such crises cause untold damage to critical business functions and services. According to one recent study, nearly 20 percent of all U.S. companies will face unplanned emergencies resulting in a shutdown of vital operations. As a result, more and more businesses are taking the critical step of developing Continuity of Operations plans that include secure teleworking services to implement procedures for maintaining business in the event of an unexpected crisis.
“A Continuity of Operations Plan is essential for any business or agency trying to sustain itself in the face of what seems to be an ever-present cycle of disaster,” said Amy Fadida, senior vice president of VIACK Corporation.
Recognizing the need for such business continuity plans across a variety of crisis situations, VIACK has created a resource guide to offer concise direction on the development and implementation of a comprehensive Continuity of Operations Plan. Entitled “Telework: A Critical Component of Continuity of Operations,” the guide provides detailed information on the construction of an effective plan by focusing on four main areas including:
- Continuity of Operations Plan Basics
- Advantages of Telework, An Effective Strategy for Continuity of Essential Functions and Services
- Incorporation of Secure Online Meeting Solutions into a Continuity of Operations Plan
- Assessing the Effectiveness of a Continuity of Operations Plan Prior to Implementation
Moreover, the guide demonstrates the fact that threats to continuity of operations can occur in a variety of forms. For example, according to the Department of Health and Human Services, a looming pandemic poses perhaps the biggest risk. The Department estimates that a severe outbreak of Avian Flu in the United States could affect more than 90 million people, with 10 million of those requiring hospitalization.
“The emergence of an Avian Flu pandemic could lead to nationwide quarantine, thus drastically impacting America’s workforce and crippling our economy,” said Fadida. “Unfortunately, most Continuity of Operations plans fail to address the likelihood and need for a completely separated workforce using alternative worksites, like home offices, in the event of a severe Avian Flu outbreak.”
Perhaps the best solution for keeping employees connected during a crisis, no matter the location, is to develop a telework program within an overall Continuity of Operations Plan. When properly deployed, a secure online collaboration solution allows employees to continue communication, reduces a reliance on the transportation infrastructure and aids in the seamless transition of business functions from one location to another. In short, telework allows employees to continue vital work functions when normal operations are disabled.
Telework Critical for Continuity of Operations
“This guide has the potential to save businesses and government agencies millions of dollars from lost time and data as a result of an unforeseen crisis,” said Fadida. “As business continuity plans are implemented, top decision-makers can take comfort in knowing that they have done everything they could to safeguard not only their organizations but their most valuable resource, their employees.”
VIACK’s guide “Telework: A Critical Component of Continuity of Operations” is accessible at http://www.VIACK.com/coop.
Note to Editors: Amy Fadida is available for interviews.
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*Source: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and Partnership for Public Warning