Business Continuity case studies always seem to be about organisations that have been disrupted by an incident and have successfully activated their Business Continuity Plans (BCPs). Why don’t we have any case studies about organisations that have failed because their BCPs were inadequate? The lessons to be learned from these would be of great benefit to all Business Continuity practitioners.
We have, at the moment, an excellent example of such a case study. This is Tepco (Tokyo Electric Power), the organisation that owns and runs the failed Fukushima nuclear power plant. Tepco shares have fallen 83% to ¥333 since March 11 when the Fukushima power plant suffered a catastrophic meltdown after a tsunami battered the east coast of Japan, and has since announced $15bn in losses. Its president has resigned, and its long-term future is in doubt. Now this is what I call a failure of Tepco’s Business Continuity arrangements, as a tsunami should have been one of the incidents that its BCPs were designed to cover.
Here is a case study waiting to be written, withn a lot of lessons to be learned.