2014: “Chutes and Ladders”

David Nolan
President & CEO
Fusion Risk Management, Inc.
Contact David Nolan At Fusion

Managing Business Continuity Management programs in 2014 will be like my favorite childhood game “Chutes and Ladders.” Leaders will climb the ladders of innovation. Laggards will be overcome by business changes, inefficiencies and miscues. Without a fresh perspective, legacy practitioners will be challenged to maintain their current program levels much less make progress. A new breed of young professionals are poised to take our industry to new heights. 2014 will see an influx of motivated young professionals into the BCM and Risk Management fields along with the introduction of compelling technologies that enable us to do more with less. Newcomers will instinctually leverage new methods and technologies to render legacy methods and tools obsolete by efficiently delivering remarkable results. New blood is to be encouraged, embraced and mentored as their presence is reflective of the increasing importance of BCM. Pay attention, they may teach us a thing or two!  

Experienced practitioners who embrace the youth movement and leverage innovative technologies will put substantial distance between themselves and their peer group and will therefore find themselves in very high demand. Those who fail to embrace this change may find themselves sliding down the chute! 


Crisis Leadership, End-To-End Testing & Resilience Visualization 

Damian Walch – Director, US National Leader Resilience Consulting
Dave Sarabacha – Principal, Global Leader Resilience Consulting
Learn More About Security & Privacy Services At Deloitte 

The past years have been filled with companies being affected by the financial crisis, natural disasters, and malfeasance. We started 2014 with security breaches impacting brand and reputation.  In 2014 corporations will dramatically increase the focus on crisis leadership.  This will integrate playbooks, communications and tools to respond more effectively to events with imperfect information.

Executives will need to improve confidence in their ability to respond to events. That will be achieved by focusing on end-to-end testing. These rehearsals and exercises will:

  • Bring clarity to response decision making authority, roles, and escalation;
  • Measure intra-organization coordination; and
  • More closely simulate real world events.

These exercises will improve the “muscle memory” of management, staff and outside business partners when responding to negative events.

Executives are using more risk sensing tools to improve visibility, and in some cases predictability, into potential events. This resilience visualization will help those executives monitor risks and threats in a flexible and geographically intelligent manner. This will be done through correlation of data from different sources — bringing together public and private information to aid in not only monitoring, but also triage and response to events.

Chief executives are under pressure to improve the transparency into their protocols and capability.


Adapting To Ecological Change 

Jim Turner
Projects Director
California Resiliency Alliance
Learn More About California Resiliency Alliance

In the recently released FEMA Administrator’s Intent (FY2015 – 2019), Administrator Craig Fugate suggests that emergency management professionals ready themselves for a “new normal.” He acknowledges increases in extreme weather, an “intensifying” of disaster patterns, and the rising costs of natural disasters. The next 75 years may bring as much change ecologically as our parents witnessed technologically in their lifetimes. Coastal communities in Southern Florida, Louisiana, and the Philippines are just some that are at extreme risk. Are we as continuity and resilience professionals planning so that our communities, economies, and critical infrastructures are ready for the extent of the oncoming economic and social disruption likely to result from these unstoppable changes in global climate and topography?


Cloud: Security Is Paramount 

Robert Nakao 
Executive Publisher
Continuity Insights 

being the word of the decade, it is clearly apparent that Cloud environments need to be highly protected against security breaches. Recent security breaches of some major retailers and the Federal Reserve depict just how vulnerable our information age is to malicious attack.  For Cloud service vendors, the issue is much different. A Cloud breach will not only impact the provider and every one of their customers, it will undermine the whole industry. For hackers, the Cloud service provider environment provides a solid challenge, and once a breach takes place, the entire industry will be on the defensive.

Social Media's Popularity Grows 

Jonna Mayberry
Continuity Insights


2014 will be a year of technology-driven communication. I foresee organizations increasingly utilizing social media for emergency management, leveraging Twitter, Facebook and other such sites to spread information to a wider audience. Continuity Insights’ Crisis Communications 2014: Social Media & Notification Systems survey, which will be released in March, will indicate whether business continuity professionals are indeed finding new ways to leverage technology to effectively communicate; not only by employing traditional notification systems, but also by utilizing social media. Overall, I believe that in this increasingly connected, technology driven world, businesses and organizations will harvest contemporary tools to increase resilience. 

GRC & BCP: Working Together         

Carlos Krause
Manager Of Professional Services
Modulo North America

Broadly speaking, we think the definition and understanding of GRC will continue to mature in 2014 with the biggest trend being on the application of GRC automation solutions to satisfy specific use cases such as BCM. We believe that organizations will start to implement GRC programs from the perspective of solving specific issues and then expanding.

Companies are starting to see new possibilities in leveraging automation to improve process-heavy programs like BCM. As your readers know, BCM needs to be tested and revamped on an ongoing basis in order to remain effective and to meet standard requirements. GRC solutions are offering excellent options for automating survey dissemination and for tracking progress and activities using digital audit logs.

In 2013 we really saw an uptick in demand for BCM as it relates to GRC. I think we will see this continue into 2014, with the relationship between BCM and GRC strengthening. There is a lot GRC can learn from BCM and vice versa.

Editor's note: Please tune into the CI Bulletin to read the full interview with Carlos Krause.