Rudolph Pereira, Team Lead, Avalon Information Systems for Community Systems Foundation
Seth Davis, Programme Advisor, Community Systems Foundation
The United Nations Entity for Gender Equality and the Empowerment of Women (UN Women) operates in over one-hundred and thirty (130) locations globally. While these locations differ in terms of size and scope of their programming, each location is required to have a Crisis Management and Business Continuity Plan to streamline integrated decision-making and coordination of operations, according to UN system-wide policy CEB/2014/HLCM/17.
These Business Continuity Plans are built in compliance of individual organizations and are developed within each location’s Organizational Resilience Management System (ORMS). As a comprehensive emergency management system, ORMS link actors and activities across preparedness, prevention, response and recovery to enhance resilience in order to improve the capacity of the Organization to effectively manage the risks of disruptive events.
To maximize time for UN Women’s personnel to perform core business functions and streamline their response efforts, Community Systems Foundation has partnered with UN Women to automate Crisis Management and Business Continuity planning, testing and execution processes. This was done through the development of the user-friendly UN Women BCCMA mobile applications.
As a partner on the BCCMA project for the last several years, Community Systems Foundation has supported UN Women in the development of both the online web-based application as well as the mobile application to assist business continuity processes in the field, as well as at UN Women HQ. This support also included technical assistance training for UN Women focal points and hosting, support and maintenance of the applications.
The mobile application mirrors tools that have been implemented and run on the online version of the BCCMA, while also providing UN Women staff with access to key modules for quick reference and use. Core functionalities of the mobile application include: business recovery processes, a crisis management tool designed to assist with crisis management with predefined plans, as well as guidelines and check-lists to ensure that all steps have been accounted for in any given situation.
Importantly, two other key features of the mobile application are the document library and the online message board. Having previously recorded physical copies of documents, the BCCMA mobile application provides UN Women an opportunity to streamline the planning process by providing key documents and plans in electronic format. In addition, the online message board enables UN Women staff within a single location to communicate quickly and effectively when emergency situations occur. This ensures that all staff are aligned and situations can be dealt with quickly and efficiently.
At a high level, the mobile application is based on the Business Continuity concept developed by UN Women and focuses on three (3) priorities areas;
The experience built over years of cooperation with UN Women positions CSF to offer technical assistance and solutions to support business continuity and emergency response in other UN Agencies.
Should you have any questions or comments, please feel free to reach Jon Kapp, Executive Director of Community Systems Foundation at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
1. United Nations Chief Executive Board for Coordination. Conclusions of the Twenty-eighth Session of the High Level Committee on Management (HLCM) - Annex III. Page 22-27. Accessed here.