Ayutthaya, THAILAND – On Thursday, September 19th, 2023, the Strategic Area – Business Continuity Management (Area-BCM) workshop was organized by the SATREPS Area-BCM Project, supported by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) in cooperation with Chulalongkorn University, Thailand. The workshop aimed to disseminate knowledge of risk and disaster management, as well as area business continuity management, to the target audience from companies. This time, professors and researchers from Chulalongkorn University and Japanese institutions organized the workshop for seven companies from Bang Pa In Industrial Estate, Ayutthaya with total number as 22 observers and participants.
The Strategic Workshop on Area-BCM was moderated by Ms. Peerada Tangprasert, a master’s candidate in the Industrial Engineering Program, who served as the MC. The session began with an opening ceremony led by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Natt Leelawat from the Faculty of Engineering at Chulalongkorn University. After the photo session, the workshop sessions commenced as follows:
The first session, Scenario-based BCM/BCP Practice, was introduced by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Natt Leelawat and conducted by Ms. Penpitcha Arayachookiat, a research assistant and a master’s candidate in the Risk and Disaster Management Program, Chulalongkorn University, facilitated with Mr. Naphat Mahittikul, , a master’s candidate in the Industrial Engineering Program. During this session, participants worked within their respective companies based on various scenarios related to infrastructure and transportation. They utilized the Area-BCM toolkit online to confirm the crisis response capabilities of their organizations. Facilitators from the Faculty of Engineering students: Mr. Nopparuj Buddhimmanoth, and Mr. Premthat Mahasuweerachai, were available to support group discussions. The objective of the session was to enhance the effectiveness of participants’ business continuity plans (BCP) and strengthen their Area-BCM system. By utilizing the toolkit and engaging in real-life scenarios, participants gained practical experience in utilizing the system.
The second session, The Area-BCM Seminar, was presented by Dr. Kunruthai Meechang from Nagoya Institute of Technology. This online session had the objective of raising awareness about Area-BCM and exploring and identifying issues that require attention, including policies for regional cooperation. During the session, participants were divided into groups and engaged in discussions on how to solve problems collectively, involving not only their own companies but also other companies in the industrial park and government sectors. The aim was to foster collaboration and find effective solutions.
To conclude the session, Prof. Kenji Watanabe, from Nagoya Institute of Technology, and the Principal Investigator of the project provided a summary of the lessons learned, wrapping up the insights gained throughout the seminar. The good example cases of Area – BCM from the Japanese towns and organizations were presented and it helps envisioning all participants to understand more the Area – BCM best practice, with facilitated by Mr. Kumpol Saengtubtim, a PhD candidate from Chulalongkorn University.
Area – BCM Discussion
After the introduction session on Area-BCM, the final session, Area-BCM Toolkit Walkthrough, was presented by Assoc. Prof. Dr. Natt Leelawat from the Faculty of Engineering at Chulalongkorn University. During this session, the presenter demonstrated the website as a toolkit for participants to learn about business continuity management at the area level. The toolkit included features such as account customization, basic information sharing timeline, business impact analysis tools, and business continuity plans as educational materials.
Following that, Mr. Pongsit Polsomboon, also from the Faculty of Engineering at Chulalongkorn University, presented flood monitoring information and near real-time forecasting. The session was highly interactive, with participants sharing questions and ideas based on their experiences in flood management within their respective company areas.
Next was the session on Business Impact Analysis by Mr. Suzuki Shingo, Deputy Manager and Project Director from the Japan National Research Institute for Earth Science and Disaster Resilience (NIED). Mr. Shingo provided the audience with insights into the business impact of flooding situations and the logistical preparation required for such incidents. The valuable comments and shared experiences from participants served as useful feedback for further enhancing the efficiency of the project’s work.
Questionnaires were administered to gather feedback for our project and facilitate further improvements. Following that, Prof. Kenji Watanabe delivered the closing session, expressing gratitude to all participants for their contributions to the successful completion of the Area Business Continuity Management workshop. As mentioned by Prof. Watanabe, this step is the first small beginning with significant serving as a pilot implementation, fostering collaboration between companies in the industrial park and researchers. It provided a platform for exchanging information, sharing ideas, and discussing risk and disaster management as well as business continuity management processes. With the valuable insights gained from this workshop, we aim to enhance and refine our implementation in the future, striving for continuous improvement.
The SATREPS DREAM (Area-BCM) Project is a joint research project between Japan and Thailand under the SENDAI framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. The project aims to launch a sustainable economic growth platform through disaster resilience enhancement at Industry complexes in Thailand and input to ISO/TC292 by the year 2023.
Written by Phongnarin Sukcham
Photos by Prof. Masahiro Inoue and Kullachart Prathumchai