Development and implementation: Business Continuity Planning (BCP) Medical Devices Organisation


Post 9/11, a global, blue chip, healthcare manufacturer mandated all its operating companies and sites to put in place a robust and audited Business Continuity Plan (BCP) owned by the senior executive on site. In the UK this organisation has numerous sites, manufacturing and administrative, including the long established administrative head office for its medical devices division, located across two sites.

 Business Issue

Although the head office facility complied with current health and safety legislation, a BCP, in line with corporate requirements, was not in place.


Based on her project and change management experience and knowledge, Janice Kite was asked to project lead a multi-functional, multi-skilled team to put in a BCP for the two-site facility.


A document published by the appropriate corporate function outlined clear requirements for an administrative multi-site facility. It defined a BCP as having 3 stages:

  1. Response (to the Emergency)
  2. Management (of the Incident)
  3. Recovery (back to ‘business as usual’)

The project team was formed with representation from each resident functional area (Information Technology, Telecom, Facilities/Security, Finance, Customer Service, Human Resources, Sales and Marketing, as well as expert health and safety representation, co-opted from another site.

An analysis of the status quo was undertaken of both functional areas and physical sites. Comparison to BCP requirements resulted in a detailed action plan to ‘plug the gaps’ identified for each of the 3 stages.

 Stage 1 actions included updating emergency procedures, training emergency volunteers (fire marshals, first aiders), testing the updated procedures and therefore the abilities of emergency volunteers and reactions of site based employees. The emergency services were engaged in the testing and provided positive feedback and areas for improvement.

 Stage 2 actions included formation and training of an incident management team, consisting of senior executives, and development and testing of internal and external communications plans.

tage 3 actions included identifying appropriate alternative workspace – NDR (now ICM www.icm-continuity.co.uk). Information System and telecoms testing at NDR was arranged and undertaken are regular intervals, ensuring, if necessary, business continuity within 2 hours.

And, overall, communication and briefing of all employees was undertaken via emergency evacuation drills, presentations, one to one counselling, with regular updates via a dedicated intranet mini-site.

The final Business Continuity Plan was approved by the senior executive following enactment of a disaster scenario. Ownership was transitioned to the incident management team.


The organisation is now fully compliant with both statutory and corporate requirements. Key employees are fully trained and experienced. All site based employees understand BCP and their responsibilities. The Business Continuity Plan, in its entirety, provides a set of quick start guidelines for restoring the organisation’s ability to resume normal business activities.

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