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business continuity certification

Business Continuity: Why, How, and Where to Get Certified

by Maggie Getova

Business continuity (BC) is becoming an increasingly important part of maintaining business integrity. As the complexity of their business operations grows, enterprises continue to rely more on protecting their IT environments to alleviate the effects of a disaster. Downtime can even end business for good, making BC a critical must-have. Because of this, business continuity professionals are becoming an integral part of minimizing downtime and keeping business operations running in the event of a disaster.

You do not need certification to work as a business continuity professional or use business continuity products but acquiring credentials can help IT professionals advance their careers.

Why Get Business Continuity Certification?

Not only does business continuity certification help you look more professional to potential employers, it can also open the door to more work opportunities that otherwise would not have been available to you. If you’re looking to switch careers and be more involved in disaster recovery and business continuity work, getting the certification can be really beneficial.

Timing has never been better to get business continuity certification, since more organizations are increasing their focus on DR services. A study conducted by Zetta revealed that more than 57% of SMBs plan on utilizing a cloud-based disaster recovery solution within the next year. The same study also showed that most organization use a number of different methods and strategies for disaster recovery, making the comprehensive knowledge provided by business continuity programs even more valuable.

What Skills and Projects Are Involved in Business Continuity?

To be effective as a business continuity manager, you need excellent analytical thinking skills and project management. You also need to communicate clearly and effectively with employees, across various departments and levels and in technical and non-technical roles, as well as the media, in the event of an emergency.  

Given the unpredictable nature of the role, job content can vary from day-to-day.  Team and plan development, business impact assessment and incident response are some of the most important activities involved in BC planning. Risk assessment and documentation of BC procedures are also important to the position. Planning and conducting mock-disaster exercises to test existing strategies are also a recurring part of the job. Updating the plans according to the results and re-testing until recovery is successful with the current environment is also a must. Many of those testing procedures are part of disaster recovery.

What is Involved in Disaster Recovery?

Disaster recovery planning is a big part of BC, so business continuity certification programs involve a number of courses that cover DR practices. Disaster recovery planning also requires analytical thinking project management skills. Disaster recovery planning is slightly different than business continuity, however, because activities are focused more on protecting and recovering the technical infrastructure of a business in the event of a disaster. Dealing with backup maintenance (software and hardware related), network resilience, and emergency power are some of the key responsibilities tied to DR.

Business Continuity Certification Programs Currently Offered in US and Europe     

 

DRI International

Certification Name: Certified Business Continuity Professional

Institution Overview

DRI International, founded in 1988 offers education and certification for both business continuity and disaster recovery. They offer BC and DR tracks in BC management, healthcare, auditing, public sector and more.

Program Courses and Fees

Classes that are part of this program include Risk Evaluation and Control, Business Impact Analysis, Crises Communications, Coordination with External Agencies and more. There is one exam required for this program at $695 as well as an annual renewal fee of $175.

 

Business Continuity Institute

Certification Name:

Certification of the BCI (CBCI)

Institution Overview

The UK-based organization was founded in 1994. They work with 3,000 organizations and support over 8,000 members throughout Europe, Asia, Africa and the Middle East.

Program Courses and Fees

Course topics at the Business Continuity Institute include Building Resilience and Good Practices Guidelines. Though prices vary by geography, the cost per exam is around €400 (about $550 USD). Courses can also be taken online or in a classroom.

 

Certified Information Security (CIS)

Certification Name:

Certified Business Continuity Manager (CBCM)

Institution Overview

The Florida-based organization has been around since 1999. Their courses and credentials offered at Certified Information Security are based on ISO standards, including 27001 (Information Security), 22301 (Business Continuity Management) and 3100 (Risk Analysis).

Program Courses and Fees

The program offers courses which include Enterprise Risk Management, Business Continuity Management, and Best Practices to Develop, Deploy & Certify BCM. The cost per exam is $100, and the annual maintenance fee for certification holders is $85.

 

Mile 2

Certification Name:

Certified Disaster Recovery Engineer (C/DRE)

Institution Overview

Mile 2 has been certifying IT professionals for seven years. They provide students with credentials including forensics, incident handling, application and source code, and virtual machines.

Program Courses and Fees

Disaster Recovery and Certified Security Sentinel are just a few of the courses candidates must pass before acquiring certification. The cost per exam is currently $300.

 

You’ve Received Your Business Continuity Certification. What’s Next?  

If you’ve already gone through a program and received your business continuity certification, there are a number of ways you can leverage that title to benefit your career. Putting your BC/DR credentials on your resume and LinkedIn are just the first steps.

To take your certification further, you can reach out to the institution where you received your certification (or other similar institutions) to find out if they have any industry meetups organized that you can attend. LinkedIn is also a great place to discover local events and groups with IT and BC professionals to network with – you could even host the event yourself.

Whether you decide to get certified from an institution or from real world experience, one thing is certain – as long as businesses exist, they will need business continuity professionals to keep them protected.

Find out about Zetta's cloud backup and restore and DRaaS solutions. 

Maggie Getova
Maggie G

Maggie is a content writer at Zetta. She writes for the blog and manages social media.