Business continuity management (BCM) has become a hot topic in recent years and more significantly, in recent months (September 11, foot and mouth and flooding). However, BCM is not just about recovery from a disaster such one caused by fire or flood or the failure of IT systems. It can also be about the collapse of a key supplier or customer, about fraud, unethical operations and about reputation management. Recent surveys have shown that most companies still do not have business continuity plans and of those that have plans, many have never been tested or exercised. As a result, corporate governance, regulatory, insurance, audit and general business requirements are now emphasising the importance of robust risk management and BCM practices in every organisation. Today, it is vital that board members and senior executives understand the nature and scope of BCM. They need to be in a position to evaluate and enhance the status of the activity within their organizations. This briefing examines the nature of BCM and looks at its relationship with other activities such as risk management, insurance and the emergency services.