Business continuity specialist

security consultant risk manager

Career outlook for business continuity specialist

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary

£42,120

Currently employed in Scotland

9,800

Five year job forecast

+4.96%

"LMI for All" supplies our salary and employment status information. "Oxford Economics" supplies job forecasts and employment figures.

What's it like?

Business continuity specialists make sure businesses can keep on running, even in challenging times. For example, how would the business adapt if its product supply chain failed? Or how would it carry on after a natural disaster?  Or how would it adapt when faced with a global pandemic?

By answering these, and many more questions, you’ll play a crucial role in protecting your organisation’s property, employees and profit. It’s a big responsibility, as you can end up in court if you haven’t put the right measures in place.  

Day-to-day, you’ll audit business areas to identify potential risks, and then you’ll develop ways to minimise or solve any issues you find. You’ll need to keep up to date with any new threats, like those related to emerging technology, so you can include these in your planning. 

To excel as a business continuity specialist, you’ll have great people skills. This lets you work closely with your colleagues to help everyone understand events that could threaten the business – and how to prevent them.  

What you’ll do

  • Audit strategies for business continuity, including how to manage in a crisis and how to recover after a disaster 
  • Find weak points and safety risks in how the business currently runs 
  • Develop and publish processes for decision making and communications in the event of an emergency 
  • Train management and other staff on business continuity processes 
  • Generate hypothetical scenarios to stress-test your plans in the face of various different types of disruption 
  • Keep up to date with what’s required by law and monitor industry trends to identify potential threats 
  • Manage budgets for business continuity resources 

Working conditions

Hours

A standard working week is common for business continuity specialists, but you may need to work extra hours if a disruptive event occurs – especially if you work at a senior level.

Environment

Where you’re based will depend on the business you work for. Most business continuity specialists work in offices. If you work as a consultant or for a large business, you may need to travel between sites.

Travel

You will need to travel for meetings, training courses and conferences.

UK employment status

Full-time

60%

Part-time

27%

Self employed

13%

Here are some of the skills needed for this job. Sign in to see how your skills match up.

  • Building relationships
  • Verbal communication
  • Written communication
  • Evaluating
  • Problem solving
  • Attention to detail
  • Developing a plan
  • Making decisions

Build your skills

Your skills can help you choose the career that’s right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.

To understand more, have a look at what are my skills?

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Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.

Foundation Apprenticeships

Choosing a Foundation Apprenticeship as one of your subjects in S5 and S6 can help you get a head start with this type of job.

You'll get an SCQF level 6 qualification (the same level as a Higher) plus valuable work placement experience and skills you can't learn in a classroom.

Interested? Find out what's on offer at your school on Apprenticeships.scot.

Qualifications

You can develop the necessary skills for this role through a variety of routes.

Most business continuity specialists will have studied at degree level in subjects such as:

  • Business studies
  • Risk management

Others will have qualifications relating to the field they want to work in, such as insurance or health and safety.

There are postgraduate qualifications available in risk management. For entry you would normally be expected to have an honours degree or relevant work/life experience.​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​

Apprenticeships

You can gain skills and qualifications in the workplace through options such as:

Foundation Apprenticeships (FAs) are chosen as one of your subjects in S5 and S6 but include hands-on learning at a local employer or college. They are the same level as a Higher.

You might want to consider an FA in areas such as:

  • Business skills

Modern Apprenticeships (MAs) mean you learn on the job. You get paid and work towards a qualification at the same time.

You might want to consider an MA in areas such as:

  • Regulatory services
  • Data analytics

Graduate Apprenticeships (GAs) are designed for industry and you'll spend most of your time learning on the job but you'll also go to uni or college. You'll get a job, get paid and work towards a qualification at the same time.

You might want to consider a GA in areas such as:

  • Business management (including financial services)

Useful subjects

Many colleges and universities will have required subjects that you must have for entry. They might also highlight additional subjects that they would value. Look at individual institution websites for specific entry information.  

Useful subjects for this job would be:

  • English
  • Business subjects
  • Maths focussed subjects
  • ICT subjects
     

Helpful to have

Not all employers list specific qualification requirements but they might ask for relevant experience, usually work based, that show a range of transferable skills.

Further information and professional qualifications are available from the Institute of Risk Management (IRM).