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Chapter 1: Getting Started

This chapter identifies foundational elements of a continuity program that will increase the success of continuity planning and operations.

Guidance and Standards

  • Presidential Policy Directive-40, National Continuity Policy, outlines the policy of the United States to maintain a comprehensive and effective continuity capability by ensuring a coordinated effort within and among the executive, legislative and judicial branches of the government at all levels. The National Continuity Policy is not available for dissemination, but the core principles and concepts are included within the CGC.
  • Federal Continuity Directive 1 establishes the framework, requirements and processes that support the development of continuity programs and by specifying and defining elements of a continuity plan for federal executive branch departments and agencies.
  • Federal Continuity Directive 2 provides direction and guidance to federal executive branch departments and agencies on validating Mission Essential Functions and Primary Mission Essential Functions, which includes conducting a comprehensive Business Process Analysis.
  • COMING SOON: Examples of state, municipal and other non-federal continuity mandates and laws.

Initiating Planning

  • The E/L/K 1301, Continuity Planning Course, is a sixteen-hour classroom or virtual course designed to help continuity practitioners understand continuity roles and responsibilities, and provide the knowledge sets, skills, and tools necessary to help develop and maintain a viable continuity plan for their organization and community.
  • The E/L/K 1302, Continuity Program Management Course, is a sixteen-hour classroom or virtual course designed to provide continuity planners and program managers the knowledge, skills, and tools necessary to help them develop a holistic continuity capability.
  • L 552, Continuity of Operations for Tribal Governments Course, is a two-day course that provides tribal representatives with an understanding of how to develop and implement a continuity of operations program to ensure continuity of community essential functions across a wide range of emergencies and events.
  • FEMA established the Continuity Excellence Series - Level I, Professional Continuity Practitioner, and Level II, Master Continuity Practitioner.  This effort is dedicated to enhancing the excellence in the development and implementation of continuity programs and emergency management.
  • FEMA has updated the continuity plan template and instructions for non-federal entities and community-based organizations  to align with the Continuity Guidance Circular. FEMA also has a template for federal agencies to provide a framework for creating a viable continuity plan by focusing on key continuity planning elements.
  • maintains information on business preparedness, including a Business Continuity Planning Suite.
  • The Continuity of Operations: What You Need To Know video introduces audiences to continuity of operations planning. It addresses the importance of continuity to organizations, best practices of planning, considerations for the four phases of continuity, and immediate steps an organization and individuals can take to prepare for the next emergency.

Leadership Support

  • The Gaining Senior Leadership Briefing assists continuity managers in effectively conveying the importance of and need for a viable and executable continuity program that ensures the continued performance of an organization’s essential functions during a disruption.
  • The Stepping into Their Shoes: Gaining Leadership Buy-In for Continuity video introduces continuity managers to tools that imparts: 1) soft skills (leadership communications and understanding); and 2) tailored facts and available resources they need to feel comfortable and knowledgeable enough to frame resonating conversations with senior leadership about continuity and its benefits.