Welcome to Business Continuity Awareness Week 2021 in Mississauga!
The theme for this year’s celebration of all things Business Continuity is “Business Continuity Starts with You.” It’s a statement that has never been more true. The COVID-19 global pandemic has changed everything from how we live to how we work. The pandemic impacts us in new ways with every new challenge and lockdown. Most of us will never work in the same way again after COVID with the changes in how we can conduct our lives and commerce.
When a disruption like COVID-19 prevents businesses from working, there are some ways we can improve our ability to respond to and recover. Whether you are a small or large organization, a lot of it starts with understanding the business’s needs, and then planning to provide for those needs.
Business Continuity Planning doesn’t have to be complex or difficult. Simple plans can be all that’s needed as a bridge to recovery. That bridge can be built by a few basic things. Record what an organization has – assets, employees, etc. Then make a plan for what the company needs to do to preserve, replace, or even do without those assets for a time.
Business Continuity Management (BCM) is a series of related activities that businesses can do to prepare for and respond to events that disrupt the organization’s work. BCM is mandated for large financial companies in Canada and is practiced by all sizes of organizations all over the world. For more than half a century organizations have utilized these methods to prepare for disasters. The approach centers on the organization itself and ways to help keep it operating in almost any disruption. Leveraging the experience and proven BCM methodologies, there are simple best practices that can be applied for small-medium sized businesses to help them successfully learn their stories and build a resilient and successful plan.
This year, the City of Mississauga will be hosting two webinars on how to prepare your small business for future outages. With a few simple steps, business small or large can place themselves in better position to overcome hardships to maintain the focus on what the organization does best.
In our first webinar, How to Prepare a Simple Small Business Continuity Plan (May 18 at 10am), attendees will learn some straightforward Business Continuity steps to prepare and practice using a Business Continuity Plan. Taking stock of what the business is and what it does is always the first step in planning. What are the services or products that are at the heart of the business? When you take into account all the people and supplies and technology involved, the picture of those products, services, or whatever you offer will show everything that the business has to protect. The next step is even easier: think of – and document – the best ways to get those people and supplies and technology back if they’re lost, or do without them if they can’t be replaced.
In the Expert Panel webinar, How to Prepare for Disruption, Business Continuity (May 20 at 10am), we’ll be proudly hosting Cynthia Weeden and Ryan Lim. Cynthia is a Business Continuity expert and local small business entrepreneur. Ryan is the Manager of Service Management in the City’s IT Division. He’ll be talking about how to effectively protect your systems and data from everyday challenges, and from hackers and malware.
If Business Continuity seems like a lot, don’t worry.
During the live webinars, our Mississauga BCM Lead will take questions and offer advice on recovery topics. These webinars will be recorded and available for viewing on our website. Handouts, including templates and instructions, will be provided by our speaker, and available to download following our first webinar. In addition to these resources, supports will be available following these sessions for Mississauga small business owners interested in learning how to create a Business Continuity Plan for their business.
We’ve also posted links below to other BCM resources that may be helpful. The most important part of BCM is the knowledge of the organization and an interest in making it more resilient and more recoverable.
The BCM program within the City Corporation is in the process of implementing post-COVID-19 BCM planning. With an eye toward the post-pandemic future, Mississauga is making changes to BCM programs in order to keep the City operating through almost any outage.
Business Continuity is a simple process that can help small-large organizations be resilient and success during a crisis. It’s a process that helps businesses of all sizes and shapes make plans to overcome adversity. By tapping into their own expert knowledge of the business and with a little bit of guidance and direction, any business
Please join us for a discussion of Business Continuity and how it can help your small business.
To register for these webinars, click on the links below:
Helpful resource links:
- Business Continuity Planning Guide for Smaller Organizations – www.cmc-canada.ca
- 8 Steps for Planning your Emergency and Disaster Plan – www.bdc.ca
- Retail Recovery Checklist – COVID Resources for Retailers – www.retailcouncil.org
- CME – Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters, Continuity Planning Guide May 2020 (Pandemic Focus) – cme-mec.ca
- Small Business Continuity Planning Guide (HR Consultant) – www.ceridian.com
- Restaurants Canada – Crisis Preparedness and Business Continuity: A Guide for Foodservice Operatons – www.restaurantscanada.org (Download PDF)
- Business Continuity and Recovery Guide: Canadian Chamber of Commerce – chamber.ca
- CFIB Business Continuity Checklist – www.cfib-fcei.ca
- Ontario Small Business Recovery Resources – covid.19.ontario.ca
- Canada Federal, Protecting your Business – canada.ca
For other small business supports, please visit:
Business Continuity Awareness Week events in Mississauga. are hosted by the Mississauga Business Enterprise Centre (MBEC) in partnership with the City of Mississauga’s Office of Emergency Management, to provide business continuity awareness and support for the local business community.
The Mississauga Business Enterprise Centre (MBEC), Economic Development, Small Business & Entrepreneurship Division, City of Mississauga, is your central source for small business information, resources and guidance.
The Office of Emergency Management is responsible for ensuring the City of Mississauga is prepared for large emergencies, disasters, and business disruptions by establishing robust emergency plans, staff and stakeholder training, emergency preparedness public education & outreach, and through the implementation of a comprehensive organization wide business continuity management program.