Rick DeLotto again… with a follow-up to my recent bloggings on how the Downturn is affecting business continuity in banking. I just caught up with the Challenger Grey and Christmas estimates on US financial services layoffs in 2008… over 260, 000! (http://www.challengergray.com/press/Financial%20Cuts%20Breakdown.pdf) Most of my research relating to this “slow disaster” is how it will impact agility—but the impact on corporate resiliency is huge.
Managers with responsibilities for enterprise business continuity both in IT and overall bank operations should check to see how their staff reductions, budget cuts and cultural turmoil has impacted their ability to maintain or resume operations, meet their recovery times objectives (RTO) and service level agreements (SLAs) in case of even a minor disruption. Line of business and operations managers may be reluctant to admit that they have reduced capacity to perform a critical function, so some actual auditing and retesting may be required.
Have any members of the recovery team or their backups been let go? If so, have their replacements been selected, informed of their duties, and trained? In many cases job duties have been “merged”, and the surviving staff may just not be up to speed yet on the responsibilities they have inherited, or be operating at absolutely full capacity, with no personal “stretch “left.
- This may be a delicate issue…but have you checked the status of your mission critical suppliers, hot site providers and partners? This should be moved from an annual to at least a quarterly or better reassessment. You really do not want to wait until an actual disruption to find out the airline you were using to reach your hot site is down to once-a day flights to that city, the airport rental car facility has been closed, and the hotels nearest the hot site boarded up.
- Why am I sure that your testing and training budgets have been cut, or eliminated? And that the new recovery team members just can’t find the time to train? This doesn’t mean it can be ignored as an issue, though, and it remains one of the vital parts of staying recoverable. This is one of the places where having highly-placed sponsors is very helpful.
- Have all records, planning documents and crisis communications scripts been updated to reflect the changes? Have managers been informed as to the impact of the changes? Are HR, legal and insurance managers briefed-in? Is everything up-to-date and ready to show your regulators?
With luck, nothing major has been impacted, and your bank’s level of operation risk will keep slowly eroding as you improve your craft-work. Luck only goes so far though, and a little extra checking now might avert some serious problems later.
Oh—don’t forget to update your Pandemic Plan too–
Category: Customer Executive Decisions operations Tags: banking and investment services, BCM DR, BCP, contingency planning, economic downturn, financial crisis, layoffs, Operational risk, Pandemic, recession