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Make resilience the key to a prosperous future

by Clare Naden on
We live in a world where the rate of change is accelerating at speeds never seen before. Our climate is in a state of flux, there is political instability and consumers seem to change their minds at a whim, not to mention technology that is advancing at exponential rates. So how can organizations keep up? Resilience is the key, and a new standard in development aimed at strengthening resilience has just reached a crucial stage.

Organizational resilience is the ability for an organization to respond and adapt to change, anticipate future threats and opportunities and understand its vulnerabilities. It includes effective planning and decision making to build adaptive capacity in complex and rapidly changing circumstances and the agility to manage a broad range of risks unique to its operation.

A new International Standard is being developed that will provide the principles, attributes and activities that can strengthen an organization’s resilience, and it has just reached the final commenting and voting stage before publication.

ISO 22316, Security and resilience – Guidelines for organizational resilience, currently being developed in technical committee ISO/TC 292, which is led by SIS, ISO’s member for Sweden, features a framework to help organizations future-proof their business by building and sustaining their adaptive capacity to transform and renew themselves in the light of complex change. James Crask, the Convenor of ISO/TC 292 working group 2, the group of experts working directly on this project, said a shared vision and purpose and a diversity of skills, leadership and knowledge are just some of the many attributes of a resilient organization.

“Enhancing resilience should really be at the heart of any organization’s purpose,” he said. “Being aware of potential vulnerabilities, adapting to change and the ability to turn threats into opportunities are means to ensure a business not only survives, but thrives. This standard will provide the principles to create a resilience culture, make effective use of an organization’s knowledge, encourage effective and empowered leaders and enable an organization to deliver on its commitments in the face of change.”

Interested parties are invited to comment on the draft standard and can do so by contacting their national ISO member.

The draft version of ISO 22316 is available from your national ISO member or through the ISO Store, and the final version is due to be published in 2017.

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