Creating Business Continuity Plans for Remote Work

Creating Business Continuity Plans for Remote Work

COVID-19 showed businesses that they need to be prepared for anything. With little or no warning, IT teams were forced to quickly accommodate a completely different environment involving remote work. A sudden disaster that renders a physical office inaccessible but still allows for remote work may not be a part of a standard business continuity plan. In order to prepare for these types of events, enterprise IT needs to focus on continuity in terms of scale, security, and staffing:

Scale: A disaster like the current pandemic shifted whole teams to working outside the physical office building – forcing IT teams to grapple with the scale of the impact on technology. Organizations were required to scramble to ensure that critical team members are available to maintain data centers and that service providers can scale with the organization.

It’s important to review business continuity plans to determine whether third-party providers are able to support remote work. While plans may have strategies in place to deal with a local or regional disaster, many may not be equipped for a global-level move to remote teams.

Security: Threat actors often look for opportunities when enterprises are scrambling to keep business operations moving. In other words, your crisis becomes attackers’ opportunity. When a global challenge occurs that pushes teams to work remotely, malicious actors know that it’s likely a situation in which data and systems are unprotected.

Remote work also expands all the risks and problems associated with bring-your-own-device (BYOD) programs, which can expose enterprise networks to new risks. In a disaster situation, enterprise IT may not be equipped to screen devices before allowing them on the network. Enterprises readying themselves for teams moving to remote work will want to strengthen security at the network edge. 

Staffing: When teams abruptly go remote, it doesn’t change an enterprise’s obligation to protect data or meet compliance regulations. It also doesn’t remove their contract obligations to customers. Meanwhile, remote work increases the risk profile of the organization, mandating additional adherence to protect the integrity of data.

Often, a business continuity plan that responds to sudden remote work will rely heavily on automation to handle mundane tasks while prioritizing higher-order security problems. A business continuity strategy equipped with artificial intelligence that can replace security analysts can help an enterprise weather a crisis.

Have you discovered gaps in your business continuity plan? Would you like to be prepared for the next sudden shift? If you’ve been struggling to implement the right technologies to continue to operate a remote workforce – or if you want to ensure your business is prepared for the future – contact us at Clarksys. We can help identify gaps in your planning and equip your enterprise so that you’re ready for a wide range of events that might threaten your ongoing success.