Business Risk Mitigation for Financial Services

Article by Nitin Mishra

Running a bank or a financial institution means you simply cannot do without a robust, fail-proof DR and BCP solution in place. The disaster doesn’t have to be an earthquake or a terrorist attack, even the crash of a server or an accidentally cut cable can cause havoc; customers won’t be able to transact, and even access their account information. This can seriously impact the bank’s operations and its relationship with its customers in the long run!

While banks and FIs do have the mandatory Business Continuity Disaster Recovery plan in place, lean in-house staff with limited experience and expertise working day and night to maintain systems may not be the right people to help avert a disaster or quickly take remedial steps. Also with the bank growing and inclusion of newer technology, processes and systems, the Disaster Recovery plan may just fail to work when it is supposed to.

What could then be a plausible, effective solution to this problem? Let an expert manage the DR and BCP of your business. This ensures that the DR and BCP plan, prepared as per the needs of the bank are executed as it is meant to be. How can outsourcing this crucial component help?

  1. BCP is a ‘process’ not a ‘project’: BCP does not stop at insurance, or documentation of a plan on paper. So it may become difficult for a lean in-house IT team to ensure this, an outsourced dedicated partner will be able to better handle this.
  2. Ongoing updation and pre-defined business continuity teams are some of the elements of a successful BCP. While this is a challenge for the bank, since DR partners work on this for organizations across verticals allocating a team is easily possible.
  3. Holistic approach: BCP evolves beyond the information technology realm and should cover people, processes and infrastructure. Such an approach requires for a dedicated DR team in-house. This is easily accomplished by a DR partner at a fraction of the cost.
  4. BCP governance: Commitment, control and guidance from management, clearly documented roles and responsibilities and formal governance process ensures that the BCP is updated regularly. BCP updation again calls for a dedicated team which an outsourced partner can provide the bank with.

What do you think? Does having a dedicated DR team make sense, or would your bank rather outsource it to a competent provider?