When Allianz, one of the world's largest insurance companies, decided to get into the asset management business, it acquired asset management companies all over the world and united them under the Allianz Global Investors (AGI) umbrella. It was, and still is, Frank Garafolo's job to bring together their business continuity plans in an organized and efficient manner.
For some time now, we in the business continuity profession have read and heard countless dissertations on how to develop and calculate a positive return on investment (ROI) to justify the business continuity planning effort within our companies. I believe it is time to get rid of the smoke and put the mirrors back in the cabinet in order to look at this question in a slightly different manner.
When you think BNP Paribas, you think big bank, big money, big business. You can add to that list big heart. The sixth largest bank in the world, BNP takes BCP seriously. But its business continuity team does more than ensure money moves and regulatory requirements are met. Four New Orleans fire companies, two New Orleans schools, and an entire New York City community have benefited from the banks deep pockets and deep commitment to doing good. Here's how.
Having been in this great industry of continuity and recovery for almost 30 years, I have seen many trends evolve, or come and go. One of those trends, which seems to have firmly planted itself, is the trend towards organizations migrating from a shared recovery solution to one that utilizes internal or dedicated, but in all cases, non-shared resources.
Elevating employees is the most overlooked responsibility in staff management. With tight deadlines and a full plate of responsibilities, managers tend to bypass this important point, especially when the company as a whole doesn't understand or embrace the concept.
IT and operational risk management are becoming critically important functions in every company. This is a result of increasing vulnerability and threat activity as well as the legal, regulatory, and business exposures tied to those threats. Organizations have struggled for decades to get a firm handle on risk, so that they could shift from a model of "experience and react" to one of "anticipate and adjust". Technology is at the core of both the problem and the solution.
Everyone is talking about a pandemic these days. If "avian influenza" or "bird flu" mutates into a form that can be transmitted from human to human, we may see the worst pandemic since the 1918 Spanish Influenza pandemic that sickened between 20 and 40 percent of the worldwide population and killed more than 500,000 people in the U.S. alone.
Our last issue included a feature on the new BCP catch-phrase: workforce continuity. The article asked whether the term is useful - or just more clutter in an already croweded lexicon - and if "workplace continuity" tactics woudl really work. In addition to interviewing industry experts, we asked you, our readers, to share your opinions about workforce continuity. Here's what you had to say.
With a former Navy submariner leading its enterprise business continuity team, BlueCross and BlueShield of North Carolina has a ship shape program that emphasizes responsibility, viability, and plain old common sense.
Strategic Integrity Continuity: Managing the Risks for Corporate Integrity in the Post-Enron Business WorldOctober 31, 2006 7:00 pm | by Robert C. Chandler Ph.D., Chair Communication Division | Comments
The corporate ethics scandals of the past decade have demonstrated that misconduct can disrupt or destroy companies. The increased regulatory scrutiny and potential punitive sanctions for misconduct have raised the stakes for senior management, corporate executives, and boards of directors. It is time to come to terms with the stark reality that corporate integrity and the ethical resiliency of your company must be considered an aspect of strategic continuity planning.
When put to the test, most business continuity plans fail to meet their basic minimum objectives. The missing link may be a lack of focus on the fundamental social factors that affect managers and employees decisions concerning theri commitment to their job and work place.
The International Association of Fire Chief (IAFC), in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate, recently convened the "Third Annual Conference on Strengthening the Public Safety Response to Terrorism and Other Hazards." Here's what happened.
The resulting paper reports figures consistent with other industry surveys. Nearly 70 percent of organizations have a business continuity plan, and about the same amount feel prepared or very prepared to recover their data centers. But while nearly 100 percent of respondents said it was very important or important to be able to recover their workforces, only 25 percent of feel that they are very prepared to do so.
An effective business continuity and availability (BC&A) plan must encompass more than just disaster recovery (DR) and be adequately tested. Recently, HP commissioned a survey about organizations' business continuity and availability plans. The responses revealed that approximately 90 percent of companies have business continuity and availability plans in place, yet only 26 percent regularly update and test those plans. The good news is that companies largely recognize the importance of planning, and that there are clear planning, implementation and management steps they can take to ensure that their plans are successful.