In these unprecedented times, firms are having to deliver BAU activities while operating contingency arrangements. Business Continuity Plans (BCP) have historically been developed in silos at a functional level or at best for a specific Line of Business. In all instances, scenario planning has been formulaic and limited in scope.
Understanding and holistically planning for end-to-end impact across the business remains work in progress. The current COVID-19 situation has resulted in BCPs being ‘stretched’ and stressed beyond the scenarios for which they were designed both in terms of scope, scale and execution i.e. a remote working scenario never envisaged or tested
While regulation for Operational Resilience is coming later this year, firms are having to operate ‘on the fly’ to support critical business functions, service availability and data security without operating outside risk tolerances or causing client detriment. It is critical at this time to have clear line of sight of systems performance and network capacity, data security, people and processes to ensure operational stability.
To identify and to sustain these levels of operational support, TORI has highlighted the key components which need to incorporated into any BCP quality assessment framework:
- Baseline & stabilise the existing Service Model to maintain delivery of critical business services (against industry standards and expectations)
- Review Ways of Working (the right tools and support mechanisms to allow a remote workforce to collaborate effectively)
- Establish the service levels within the organisation (and the rigour surrounding 3rd party and vendor management)
- Optimise and prioritise delivery methods (notably change, test, release and quality, but also ITSM process maturity and continuous improvement in general)
Stabilise Business Continuity/ Disaster Recovery arrangements to maintain an acceptable level of BAU commitments and deliver foundation for Operational Resilience.