No perfect equation exists for determining when a disaster will befall a business’s operations. However, the world’s leading business impact experts use Big Data, predictive analysis, and even architectural assessments to help determine if and when a major problem might occur. They determine where a business is most vulnerable, which departments, resources, and employees might be impacted, and how the business should adapt its operations to steel itself for trouble.

Enterprises also use business impact in order to optimize processes in order to run more efficiently. According to a Deloitte report, Saia, a US-based freight company, worked with Intel to deploy sensors into its truck fleet to track a wide variety of performance metrics in real time. The initiative led to a 6 percent increase in fuel efficiency, which translated to $15 million in savings. Companies such as GE, IBM, Lenovo, and Workday are working directly with organizations to deliver these kinds of results thanks to proactive business impact assessments.  

Companies use assessments to help develop a roadmap for how to recover should a disaster ensue. Having a contingency plan as the result of an impact analysis could mean the difference between survival and bankruptcy. The world’s leading experts approach business impact in a variety of ways, by applying different technologies, analyses, and contingencies to each business they consult. We spoke with experts from The New York Times, Gartner, IDC, Constellation Research and more to hear their key considerations on business impact, and how they might benefit organizations.