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Disaster Contingencies Elude UK Companies - Parity emphasizes importance of risk management to businesses


Parity IT Business Services have stated that UK businesses regularly preach the importance of planning for disaster, yet they fail to make business resilience a reality.

Following their announcement of being made the first fully accredited training provider for the Practitioner Certificate in IT Service Continuity Management module by ISEB, Parity have announced their intention to strengthen their portfolio in this area, reflecting on the new report from the Chartered Management Institute (CMI).

The report reveals that a quarter of UK firms were affected by extreme weather conditions during the past year, and that one-fifth suffered a loss in productivity because of skills shortages. Rick Firth, Managing Director of Parity Training said, “Increased terrorist attacks and environmental disasters have shifted business continuity and risk management high up the corporate agenda. With new standards coming in for business continuity it is important that we keep abreast of the planning and risk issues that affect businesses”.

The CMI report also discovered a distressing amount of complacency among the 1,257 public and private sector companies surveyed. Less than half of respondents said their employers have a business continuity plan (BCP) covering critical areas. Within medium- and small-sized organizations, levels of preparation are lower still (42 and 34 percent respectively).

“We will continue to offer new products to compliment our other areas of risk”, continues Firth. Parity’s current products include the Management of Risk Certificate based on OGC’s best practice guide ‘Management of Risk: Guidance for Practitioners’, and Risk Management which is part of the Parity Training Professional Development Scheme for Programme and Project Managers – Level 5 Programme, and Project Management Diploma awarded by the Chartered Management Institute.”

“Disaster contingency is also wrapped in legislation in some sectors that we work in”, commented Rick Firth, “There are various pieces of legislation that specifically relate to aspects of risk such as evacuation planning, including the Fire Safety Act of 2006 and recent EU directives on health & security. So businesses do have responsibilities for continuity and crisis management that may be driven by some very specific obligations”.

Editorial notes:
Parity, uniquely for its size, offers a full range of IT services to major companies including:

Business process consultancy, change management training, management training, technology training, programming training, development and management of complex IT systems, Oracle and Microsoft technology and application skills, permanent and temporary IT staff

Customers across the group include Alcatel, Allianz, British American Tobacco, CISCO, Department for Constitutional Affairs, Department for Work & Pensions, Glaxo Smith Kline, HBOS, Hewlett Packard, HSBC, IBM, Ministry of Defence, Department for Health, O2, Perot Systems, Royal Bank of Scotland, Siemens, Sony Ericsson, The Cabinet Office, T-Systems, Invest NI, Northern Ireland Electricity, The Charity Commission and Scottish Power


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