Webinar: Why Business Continuity Plans Fail & How To Avoid Repeating Others' Mistakes

Webinar: Why Business Continuity Plans Fail & How To Avoid Repeating Others' Mistakes

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okay i think we will get started i want to uh  welcome everyone to today's webinar broadcast   wherever you are whatever time it is we really  appreciate you being with us today as you can   tell the conference discussion is why businesses  business continuity plans fail i i think that's   a statement we can all agree with at one time or  another um so this will be a uh webinar discussion   we hope you'll be taking away some useful  insights and and guidance and ideas that you   can bring back to your own organization i want  to welcome our special guest uh speakers today   we have carol delate she is uh the senior  business continuity manager at exeter finance   she's been in the business resilience  industry since 1997 so obviously had   some first-hand experience with y2k and was  introduced to disaster recovery at that time   and later became a certified business continuity  professional and also became an active member of   the association of continuity professionals  also online in from boston is stephen clancy   he's the senior director contingent workforce  strategies knowledge and research at siaa   he's primarily responsible for developing  and supporting best practice advisory and   market research for staffing industry  analysts contingent workforce strategies   cws as a cwu strategies and research director  he works closely with buyers who are engaging   msp vms rpo and ats solutions and  services to support the organizations   and finally ma mark connard he's the senior  director of revenue and management and r plus l   carriers he has over 40 years of experience in the  ltl industry and starting his career earlier in   conoco's management training program than spending  approximately 14 years with yellow freight   and then the next 14 years with usf and currently  with our plus l carrier since 2009 so i want to uh   welcome our our great speakers we really  appreciate your time today um also for   those on the line uh we would love to have your  questions it's pretty simple uh you could type in   your question and just hit the uh the horizontal  orange button there somehow that reminds me of   the ncaa march madness don't tell me why but maybe  because my brackets uh the arrow's pointing down   my bracket's not doing too well but anyway i  appreciate you all being here if you have any   questions we're going to work those into the  dialogue in a little bit i thought uh you know   we've all been through quite an interesting uh  12 months to say the least so i thought it'd   be a good place to start talking about business  continuity is uh just uh maybe mark maybe help   us kick off here and uh in a nutshell what do you  think from a vcp perspective at a very high level   you know you've obviously been around a little  bit what do you think the last year has taught you um what i gained out of this is that i think we  use our experience and we plan contingencies based   on what we've become familiar with what we know  what i've learned is there has to be much greater   imagination in the future i mean who could have  conceived that a virus would have brought down   the world economy the way it did so uh we in  my from my perspective our imaginations need   to be stretched um all contingencies exist out  there viruses uh nation state politics uh not   just the weather hurricanes uh fires plants going  down internet going out um it's just it's a whole   different thinking but uh in my mind got it okay  that's a great point and uh carol do you believe   that delivering on the requirement requirements  of bcp is more of a priority now do you hear your   colleagues and senior executives thinking in a  different way relative to bcp oh absolutely sir   it has really opened the eyes of a lot of  people that uh business continuity is a must   for uh for businesses and if they had not heard  of business continuity before they certainly did   in the past year because of the effects they've  had on them uh before this past year i'd say i   work in business continuing you say well what's  that now i can just say you know this pandemic   this is what causes business continuity we still  have to continue the business and what do you do   to prepare for that so do i think that that means  that we are have a we have a higher disability for   sure um the priority is being funded a lot more  by most companies that i've been in touch with uh   over the past year it's really gotten a lot more  people we have a lot of job openings and looking   for people to help out because uh it's going to  be something that's going to be a higher priority   going forward uh unfortunate unfortunate that  has to be reactive that way but sometimes that's   that's what happens with budget you know it's  not until you oh yeah i guess we need that now   so there it goes thank you okay great point  great point and over to you stephen uh i know   one of the things we'll get into a bit more  deeply today is the contingent workforce but uh   just just to kind of give some ideas uh to  sprinkle some ideas in in the uh minds of our   visitors today why is it so important we spend  time and energy on the contingent workforce   well i think past bcp plans  have focused on and we have this   brought up in our preliminary discussions  focus on an asset focus on a building   what we have to begin to incorporate is the actual  uh talent structure that we have you're starting   to see organizations that 50 of their total  workforce are contingent workers which is amazing   to many people when they first hear that statement  so the question is do you know of those active   contingent workers where they are the other thing  is the restructuring of the workplace itself now   what percentage is remote where are they located  um and then how do you then execute a bcp   plan that's not just focused on that particular  building incidentally there will be tens planning   still um important to create for that but now you  have a different um distributed and contingent   workforce that you have to take into account and  just basic communication with that talent so you   can execute your plan if you don't know where they  are then how do you and how to reach them then   how do you execute your plan that's just basic  fundamentals now so just as a follow-up to   that the the the fundamental structure of the  way organizations are built seems to be in a   you know an uh a huge sea change one that again  we didn't necessarily know was coming uh even in   the last week you had uh you know the new york  uh new york times declaring that new york city   will never be the same that we will never see the  same numbers of people working in those offices   and you know the wall street journal contradicted  that a few days later but i guess what i'm getting   at is it seems like companies are in such a state  of flux uh even with their own people and then   couple that with the contingent workforce it  seems to me there's a lot going on in the minds   of these senior leaders and these companies with  the workforce and management is it potentially   an overlooked issue this this contingent  workforce given all these other priorities well i think so because uh you know our experience  was that stephen was mentioning um you know   we do a quite a bit of business outsourcing  with valued collaborative partners and we had   connections we had facilities but then suddenly  to steven's point we had to communicate with   the management teams of those bpo asset management  groups to get in touch with their teams uh where   are you going to work from can you work from where  you're at because all of a sudden much of our work   was done in india and as a nation state they  shut down travel and you had to harbor it home   so our partners had to reach their people and  say how do we get them up and get connected   to support the contractual obligations they  had to our company and just the same we had   to do the same work at rnl carriers within  the states our people couldn't come to work   and we had to start distancing people from one  another just to maintain the continuity of our   business so we didn't have a rampant exposure to  the virus and lose multiple assets all at once so   i think stephen's right on with um his  comments he was making the points he was   setting for so that was our concern challenges  okay all right uh well let's go into one of uh   more of our scripted uh some of these scripted  questions so uh for for folks uh today do you   incorporate performance sustainability elements  in your bcp in terms of scalability uh up or down that's that's just open  anybody who wants to jump in my sense is that you're going to have probably  more uh waves that you're going to experience in   the general economy and you're going  to have some ups and downs that   potentially from a performance standpoint even  though bcp is is on maybe everybody focuses on   disasters and i don't know carol in your  experience whether you begin to bring that   into the scalability i mean i'm thinking about  sustainability you hit a level of performance   you have a certain sustainability that you want  to make sure that you can keep that performance   no matter what's happening in the marketplace  and that means how well can you scale up how well   can you scale down incidentally contingent work  isn't the answer to everybody's business problems   okay but you can that can bring  some scalability um around those   um performance challenges that are  caused by big sustainability uh events i don't know what you see in some  of your bcp planning uh carol   well um as far as that goes to sustainability  we can we've always had a percentage like   we could good faster so you always plan on  being segregated about 30 of what you were   having before so you should be able to operate  at 70 of what you had uh and in this case with   the pandemic it really came down to more like  50 or 40 percent instead of 70 so it was quite   a much bigger hit this time in most cases  that i saw and heard about so it was that   it hit a lot harder than anyone anticipated so  uh that did cause a lot of our concern around okay our practical experience  at rnl was you know that um   in terms of this the sustainability of it you know  suddenly we had a mass cataclysmic change usually   our scalability we're always thinking about  growth and working with our contingent partners to   ensure that they scale up as we anticipate  growth and need uh never have we been in   a situation where suddenly within a 72-hour  period we lost 90 of our capacity um and i i   i wish i had the answer because if i had the  answer i wouldn't be on this i'd be with my own   startup telling everybody how to do this but i i  i am still baffled and boggles my mind we spent   a lot of time talking about if we encountered  this situation again when you lose that much   capacity how do you sustain your performance we  were able to do some things with internal assets   deviate and take them off of other duties to  perform the things we needed to do our operations   and revenue planning to sustain our business  but i still don't have the answer and maybe   one of our listeners may have the  answer and share with us how to do it so   yeah folks who uh you don't necessarily have to  pose a question you could make a comment as well   per mark's point there mark one thing about what  you just said i find when you really ponder it   does is part of the clue or part of the puzzle  relate in some way to the internet strength   in a given geography as well as the  readiness of an individual to work from home   uh when you talk about 90 going out i don't know  if every part of the world reacts to that level   if you see what i'm saying well no it's a  perfect point because this is what we experienced   practically is that you know um we we had uh  planning and continuity plans to ensure you know duplication and backup of internet connectivity  that we had different plants and facilities to see   people the real issue became when you couldn't  go to those physical work environments to do   work and then everyone had to work distributed  you know just like in the united states many of   the foreign countries there's different levels  of access to high quality internet connectivity   and so that's what they experienced a lot in india  a lot of their people could work in uh businesses   and centers that they had good connectivity but  once they moved to uh work from home um you didn't   have cable connections you had to rely on cellular  hotspot connections and some of that was spotty   we even see some of that uh here in these states  uh where some people are in metro areas and some   people work rurally they just don't have the  same level of services and so that's that's   a key point that um we started to think about and  came up with ideas on how we can support uh those   assets of ours who don't have great internet  service which uh if you haven't seen i was   like plumbing you turn the water on you expect  the water to work but some places you don't have   any water pressure someplace you don't have good  internet but we're so dependent on that now i mean to add to that whose responsibility is  it is the responsibility of the worker to   you know be able to find a starbucks or  somewhere where they can plug in with   recent uh connectivity or is the  responsibility of the business   owner to provide the connectivity  necessary for them to do their work offer a comet i don't know in the company   but uh they didn't grow this company to the size  and profitability it did by saying well you guys   are on your own i believe at this particular  enterprise we see it as our responsibility   to ensure that our assets contribute to their  maximum capacity and that it's not your job to   go find a starbucks guarantee if you don't get  good internet access you're probably not living   very close to a starbucks anyway or mcdonald's  or wherever you go that's true that's true well   let's go on yeah excuse me let's go on to the next  question and that would be you know this is really   the moment to to share and what because everyone  was in this boat in some way or another but what   was missing from your bcp plan that should have  been included and what impact uh this had on the   pandemic response phase who would like to take  that one first carol i'll take that one sir so   in my experience pandemic has already always been  a separate document a separate document that was   that was created by the crisis management team  and was outside of the bcp plan altogether   and uh and so that's right in itself uh is an  issue because no one hardly ever took the time   to exercise or test the pandemic response phase no  one ever did that because nobody thought that it   would take the people out of the workplace they  thought people would die that they would have   a lot of people dying off but they never thought  that oh they're all going to live or most of them   will live they just need someplace else to work  so there was a whole mindset a paradigm shift of   what that pandemic the effect of that would be  because there's not a single pandemic plan that   i've ever seen that actually took it from the from  the point where it happened this time where it was   always an epidemic that everyone was dying and the  effects it would have on an office place that you   need continued workers you need somebody to  do work instead of people that aren't there   but it was never the point of oh my gosh you know  these people can't come to the workplace they've   got to go work somewhere else and they have to  welcome close resistance and all these other   parameters uh but i think what another thing that  was missing from the bc plan that i was i wasn't   extra financed that was just a different company  so we can't we can't uh slam extra i wouldn't   do that but with the company that was worth  at the time uh they really had a very small   uh section on supply chain and third parties  and i think that that really needed to be uh   much more in the forefront because  the company i was with at the time   say a manufacturing firm we saw the workers to  do the work but we couldn't get the supplies so   we still couldn't do the work and so their  frustration from there but no one no one   thought that was going to be that it was going  to be this far-reaching globally a true globalist   so that uh but that's something that is hardly  ever as we always you know do the hurricane   or the tornado or the um you know a virus gets  through the the computer not to the people because   through the equipment you know things like that  you get other types of losses but not a lot such   as this that it's a people lost but it's really  a workplace loss and so it shifted right in the   stream pretty much right from the beginning and  that was definitely not really seen in dc frames   that i've seen over the years uh and that's that  really caused an upset however people because they   had exercisers this is something that we planned  everybody knew to jump from there they knew how to   take a quantum leap and be able to figure it out  uh those that just left the plans on the shelf   or you know didn't ever take them out except  that one time a year for the tabletop test they   they had the ones who really suffered because  they really didn't take the concept seriously interesting good points what do  you guys stephen what do you think   um i i only can add a little bit to really the  excellent response that carol has given there and   really framing maybe what wasn't in the  response for a pandemic and losing the workplace   um just an example we know that there was a  number of folks um a year ago this month they   were sending people home with desktops because you  think about all all the different components and   and the other thing that that i don't and i  think there's a lot of risk that was taken   is there was no real data security plan now all  of a sudden the data is flowing from a remote spot   um and either using a vpn um what i mean because  you're in house with the internet now you're   dealing potentially if you're going to vpn yeah  you're in the internet but if not then now all   of a sudden you're really exposed uh with data  security and so is that part of the plan because   this is a new operating environment that you're  you're working on i'm sure that they scrambled and   got some procedures in there but that's that  wasn't potentially in the bcp plan before because   as carol said nobody really and i think this is an  important point nobody really said okay let's shut   down a building and see what happens okay test it  test it um do we have this technology in continued   workforce business called the vendor management  system the vms and everybody pretty much has one   in the bigger firms um that piece of software  and so when we talk about sustainability of the   contingent workforce program that manages all this  um activity with computerworks we say well how   good is your bcp plan well i'm not sure i said why  don't you turn off the vms and see what happens okay so anyways testing and also  i would add data security i agree what about you mark well at  that point i would just add guys and gals that run an imt technology group  you know had the vision we had we're we're a vpn   outside connectivity so we had that covered  however we hadn't done a good job of saying   does everybody have the equipment because so many  of these applications that run our processes are   proprietary and we haven't loaded it on someone's  personal computer so we were doing exactly what   stephen said i remember taking my suit off  putting jeans on because we were unhooking the pcs   monitors keyboards mice and putting them on carts  and putting them in the back of trunks for people   to take home and giving them printed instructions  on how to access the vpn to restart at the house   because we were having to start with the office so  uh we did not have that in our contingency plan so   um we certainly think about it now we did  buying a lot of uh these mini tower lead me   i don't know you guys figure it out you  know we stocked up that stuff and uh   we're right we can work from anywhere now so let's  learn do you do you all think the companies that   were they're from their very foundation they  they were distributed they pushed for remote   they built their companies with the concept of  we we can manage people from wherever they are   uh you know ibm comes to mind to a degree but  there's lots of other companies in the new economy   who really lean heavily on the idea that  we can be more agile if we're more remote   is it is it logical to think that those companies   are going to be better prepared for the kind of  things we went through and and obviously maybe   some of the nuts and bolts of keeping the business  running but is it too much of an assumption to   think that their bcp would have been stronger or  more resilient in a situation like we went through i i think by default um with this particular  um event in pandemic they were able to leverage   uh take a company like toptail okay it's an  online talent platform they're completely   uh remote they like what rei did uh they had a  beautiful headquarters in oregon and and i don't   know three or four months ago they sold it off  and they went completely virtual completely remote   except for their retail outlets and who knows  if most of that ends up going remote because   people are buying stuff online it's just  it's a transition of the core um workplace   fundamentals and and so when you start taking  off the issues um um you know top tell i don't   think they have email they use slack i mean  you use ms teams you attach document storage   security and also collaboration because you're all  someplace else you're not physically together and   it can add to the security but it can add to be  able to execute remotely so if you just change   your communication strategy your interact strategy  um and but that they were they were they they were   ready for it and i would just say one last thing  in that i've been working out of uh remotely uh   for a couple of different businesses for the last  20 plus years this didn't affect me as far as what   i was doing on a daily basis i had to mask up and  do other kinds of things but i just kept operating what do you think carol do you think the  advantage went to companies that were   already adept at managing remote  teams and working with remote partners   uh yes i do think they have an advantage up front  but i think that that most of the rest of us   came up to speed rather quickly uh especially if  you had at least some capability prior you know   like like stephen was saying he worked remote for  a long time i worked remote at least you know one   or two days a week so i was already kind of used  to either in the office or at home but there's a   lot a lot of workers that weren't that way that  you know just couldn't do that but um a lot of   call centers had already gone distributed you know  you didn't know if you were calling state farms at   three in the morning and talking to someone in  their pajamas or not you know if you just didn't   know because it didn't really matter what time  zone you were in if that makes sense so if there's   a lot that had already done those kinds of things  where it made sense uh but there's others where it   just really depends on the industry quite frankly  if you have a company that you need people there   to do what needs to be done assemblies and things  like that that are not 100 automated uh or need to   need inspections at certain times and you can't  necessarily inspect unless you actually look at   it and touch it move it and see if it works  did you have any uh points on that one mark well yeah we're in a trucking business so we're in  the dirty world business we're not we're not new   technology you know it started with a little  wagon now we got tractors and trailers but you know there may have been some  first mover advantages some people like   ibm these tech services and consulting but you  know we quickly learned and as we learned that   uh that became a new opportunity for us to  reduce costs but more so i think we've learned   that people working from home valued that  experience and we're starting to see that   applying more effort to ensure that they can  stay at home and uh we've seen activity go up   we've seen turnover go down in certain aspects  of our business i just you know just think of   you know caretakers at home who have to look at  children or have a plumber come in they used to   have to take a half a day of vacation to go take  care of those things they don't do that anymore   and they stay connected working they've been  trained they're very effective and efficient so   what advantage is some others had obviously  they had them i i think we have quickly   uh caught up with that and we are realizing  the benefits and advantages of that and   now that's another lesson from this you know had  this not occurred we may not have thought in those   terms we're still thinking in our whole world  terms you know so um i'm sitting in a brand new   office building that doubled the size of our space  three years ago and it was nearly 100 occupied i'm   i got a whole floor i could pick a conference  room to come in which i did so i'm not sure how   many people are coming back but not many there's  not going to be a lot of people coming back but   we're better for it probably sure well let's  uh let's uh first of all uh for everyone on   the line if you have any questions or comments  i want to encourage you to go ahead and uh and   file those with us and hit the orange arrow button  and then i want to move on to a bit more practical   discussion you know we really want to help our  listeners today on the construction and contents   of their core bcp plan so and and uh maybe we'll  start with you carol is your vcp and all hazards   approach or does it have appendices for identified  risks and vulnerabilities uh not the one i'm   currently working with in exeter finance but i  have been at a couple of companies where they did   do an all hazards approach but i don't necessarily  recommend it as much just because uh even even   whether it's not it's not the same approach you  don't you you know you don't exit the building if   it's a tornado if you do at this building it's the  fire so how could that be all happens you can't   tell them well what do you do you're saying or  do you know you have to kind of just know so from   that standpoint and that's just a very simplistic  uh example but uh but the point being is that uh   you can have a core plan and then have appendices  for all the different types of risk and threats   and vulnerabilities that affect the company so  uh it's fine to have one like i said a core plan   and i have a lot of a lot of different tendencies  that you can just branch off of um this busy where   also uh if you have a commercial off the shelf a  cost kind of plan that that would uh actually uh   lean in towards having a core plan that you  know put your components together based upon   what your application or your department's needs  are okay other thoughts from uh stephen and mark   we we do a um so we're focused on the  contingent workforce program that sits   inside you know organizations and they  can be focused on north america or global   uh in nature and so what what we do is and it's  probably the bcp is part of this sustainability   uh approach we have and there's different kinds of  risk that we look at um some of these are are you   know legal risk some of them are operational risk  uh some of them are strategic um which is brand   you know this kind of thing um so uh but the  only thing uh and i think carol's hit the mark   if this can can get so big it's it's not focused  and so it's not usable it's not effective it's not   practical um but what we've been telling  our our clients in our council is that   here's your risk categories complete a risk  assessment so it can inform you of some specifics   you want to make sure it's covered in your bcp and  so that's probably how i can position what we talk   about it starts with sustainability what are the  things you need to have and then drive that into   some of the bcp operation plans to  go execute when certain things happen okay anything to add mark i mean all hat all hazards what are  all the hazards i mean who knows   i mean a year ago i didn't think virus was a  hazard but um i mean i i go back to a comment   i made earlier is you know you i think we've i've  learned you've got to think with more imagination   not just depend on looking at what i already  know but you know getting the crayons and the   paper out and start drawing pictures and coming  up with something creative what is it that i   don't know that i can imagine may happen but then  the stephen's point is we still got to be focused   you can get so off the edges on this thing i  don't know um where it could lead you have to   stay focused on the business of the day but  you know good leaders are looking over the   horizon to say what may happen and i just think  imaginations i need to stretch mine i can talk   about me so that's one of the things i have to do  for my company is be a little bit more imaginative   so this is an i don't think sorry go ahead kirk  i was just going to say um you know carol have   you seen where people have over invested in bcp  plans um no no i don't think so okay all right okay i have kind of a question along that same  line for mark so in these situations of and i i   think you're absolutely right you have to be more  imaginative don't don't be too uh narrow in your   thinking but i have seen situations uh sometimes  in the technology industry in terms of spending   that uh even like risk management the famous line  of don't do something that'll put you on the front   page of the wall street journal so the the c-suite  is always trying to figure out what are we gonna   make sure this is gonna make absolutely sure  we're not the poster child for screwing up bcp   we want to use our imagination but again it  it kind of boils down to budget sometimes   and i'm just wondering maybe it's not over  investment but our company is more vulnerable   to fixating on bcp or trying to reduce all  this risk when you're trying to balance   what's what's possible and what's not possible  and trying to try to put metrics behind that   that's a question to me yeah i mean  that was supposed to be a question it's trying to find that balance point because um  you know some of the panelists gain money by us   contracting with them to help us with these  things which i i can appreciate but then uh   when you're a privately held company and you  pretty much uh report the performance of the   company up to a very small family you've got some  responsibility to get good advice and counsel   um so i i i probably i think you can overspend i  mean you got to balance what's in the budget to   what's doable assess it against the risk but  in fairness you know you need to be open to   learning things that you simply have not been  exposed to in the past at least taking it in   putting the cards on the table and then  trying to make good decisions between the   men and women that are leading the organization  uh um i don't think there's any simple answer but   uh that's what we to get to a certain level  of management that's your job is to think yeah very true okay well why don't we move on to the  next question um is a bcp plan more prone to fail   when not aligned with the clauses of iso 22 301   and uh you know this kind of moves in the  direction of uh weather staying aligned   with international standards or whether or  not to adopt them so any thoughts on that all right i have thoughts on that a bcp document  should align with the causes of iso 22-301 whether   or not you implement the iso 22301 and pay for  the standard and up and keep it updated that's a   different story and that can be a budgetary thing  it also can depend upon the size of the company   but at the end of the day what uh iso 22301 which  is the standard for business continuity came out   in 2012 uh it actually takes the core of business  continuity planning and expanded it into the ten   clauses that you usually see in the knights  of standards usually but it's structured very   very much the same every iso uh standard out  there is and at the end of the day the plan   do check act which is the core of this continuity  is uh to have a cyclical uh ongoing plan you plan   you do which is exercise you check and make  sure what works but didn't work and you act   upon it and make an improvement and you do that  over and over again usually on an annual basis   the uh 22-301 took that concept and made it  into an international standard so i do believe   that every bc plan should follow that same  uh thought process of the plan dude check act   uh whether or not you you apply it and  by the standard that will make you that   the reason you would buy the standard is that  it's a marketing differentiator for one thing   that you have a company that you know that  is is aligned with an international standard   uh some companies that that is never going  to matter but still the concept arizona 2301   needs to be applied because it goes right back  to the core of friendly checkout okay all right   so in other words it it's important to keep it  aligned uh uh mark or steven any thoughts on that i'm thinking um i'd like to hear maybe from  mark i need to become a student of exactly   what it is we're primarily a domestic business  we don't get too fully involved in that type of   certification yeah yeah i you know i i  think also um you know iso standards are   very critical i mean they it takes a while  for them to be developed it developed from   a very diverse group across the world uh and  and so i think there's something to be learned   from those um the thing that um um i wanted to  just add is you should also have your own internal   measurement that when you put in these bcp plans  and policies you should also look to see how it   impacts your ability to sustain your competitive  advantage in the marketplace you don't want to get   so restrictive and probably is not the case maybe  with the bcp plan but beyond that where people get   so they overreact for what we went through i don't  blame people for overreacting but then what you   have to do is you're going to measure this against  your competitive performance in the marketplace   and make sure you don't start throwing in some  restrictive policies that don't allow you to   um compete as well as you can so you've got  to have mark said you've got to have a good   balance approach we talked about over investor  at least i mentioned it i'm just suggesting that   we have to make sure that um we don't um you  know go so far over that all of a sudden you   know we're restricting our ability to conduct the  business that we need to and in the way we need   to it's a tough balance it's not a perfect answer  this is a standard can give you some guidance but   then you have to you know decide this is the kind  of position we need to be to be able to plan for   the future if something happens okay perfect and  we have another kind of more of a nuts and bolts   question so i'm gonna i think carol you probably  the best one to take this one is uh do you use   the ms suite of tools to create bc documents or  do you use a cots product and you know what are   the pros and cons of using prepackaged software to  manage bc programs in your opinion okay so most um   more companies than not use the ms readers tools  to create their bc documents they use the uh the   uh you know the basics the excel and and word  and powerpoint and they put it all together and   it works perfectly fine but it has a tendency  to allow for people to go rogue uh so if you're   a company that that is uh heavily audited or  heavily regulated i would highly recommend that   they use a commercial off-the-shelf crts muscle  on the shelf off the shelf uh products one that   is already packaged to uh to address that so there  are uh certain certain brands that are more suited   towards the financial services there are some that  are more suited towards manufacturing services   there are some that are just generic out there  but it's really i think it's really important   depending upon what uh what you see down the road  if you're a private company and you can just you   know throw it together and and be done with it but  you could be a private company it doesn't really   understand business primarily and you want to have  some structure to start with and i think that's a   great idea is to to buy into a product that that  already exists and you just kind of put your   data in and then it creates the product for you  and that definitely makes it easier to maintain   so in the long run i think it's better to have  a product unless it doesn't fit your company   okay very good very good and i'd like to go  back to more of a higher level question uh for   uh our panelists today is what is the single  greatest insight gained from managing bcp   through the pandemic uh i know we've kind of  touched on this before but you if you were really   forced to try to uh crystallize the  the biggest insight what would it be all the way in quickly it's it's the value of  our people the value of assets i mean two i   think uh we've focused too much on data  connectivity physical plant uh disaster   recovery in terms of the physical and not the  people and it became very very apparent to us probably a wake-up call many people came to is  that just how important each one of us is and   the people that we work with that's that's  the clarity that i gained in this thing i'm going to steal marx i do because it's  resonating in my mind and that is bring a new   imagination to how the business uh can operate  moving forward uh and not keep be trapped by   well this is the way we do it this is the  infrastructure we have because i think it'll   allow you to have more effective vcp plans  in place but also might completely help you   transform the way the business operates because  guess what in a lot of industries the business   has been able to operate not only more effectively  but in many cases including ours more profitably   i mean i'll give you an example so we  run this ccwp certification program   and we've been doing it virtually over zoom um we  do amazing when we commit a natural lax with zoo i   mean it's just wonderful what we're able to do um  as far as polls activities myth and realities all   kinds of things in an educational knowledge  transfer uh product but guess what i'm not   traveling i'm not paying for food i'm not i mean  there's just all these expense because everything   was done in person before and now using mark's  um council i have to bring a new imagination   of how i'm going to execute that program  moving forward um to make it more effective   and um increase the return on investment for us  being involved in a certification in the industry absolutely i i'd like to ask that i agree  with everything you said steven but i think   at times the personal effect is really good too  you know when i i don't want to be 100 removed   100 of the time from people i work with it's nice  once in a while have that you know there's only   so much team building and exo and you can do  virtually you know so you know what i'm saying   and there's a lot to be said for that so you can  only get so much to resume i know some companies   right now are doing zoom free fridays just to  not have so much in your face that's right yes   so yeah so there's i think a hybrid is is what's  going to happen because i understand a lot of   companies are allowing the individual employees  for the most part to be able to choose whether   they how many days a week they come in or you know  if they come in 100 or you know never at all uh   that kind of thing but um which i think is great  because some people do much better working from   remote uh they they do get more done uh i'm one  of those i'm much more effective uh just not being   distracted by all my co-workers coming over to  say hello show me their grandchildren's pictures   you know which i love but uh at the end of the  day you know it can be very distracting so nice   once in a while though that's a really important  point we actually have some in-person classes   scheduled for the later half of the year so we're  going to have it's going to have to be a balance   it depends on what kind of value you're bringing  to the marketplace what's the business you're in   and then um but i think it's going to have um  your your your word hybrid um um uh it's going   to have that mix um and you got to figure  out what the what the right balance is for   the business you're in yeah okay we got two more  questions questions to knock out again if anybody   out there has any other thoughts or comments  please don't hesitate and put them through   uh again for a panelist do you conduct an annual  risk assessment that reviews strategic operational   safeguarding resources and compliance that  can inform the details of your bcp focus   so this is something that we um bring to our  folks we do program maturity assessments to   again focused on the contingent workforce program  and what we're saying is because there's all   different kinds of risk in these particular areas  when you're using a contingent worker and and what   we're trying to do is we're trying to assess will  it actually happen um and if it does what's the   impact um not all that is going to be you know a  place in a bcp plan but it can inform the details   um and we have i've built um this little excel  based tool to help people do that um as far as our   our council members are are concerned but we try  to look at all these different kinds of things and   it's based on trying to sustain um sustainability  but there's a lot of risk involved with using a   contingent worker and so we try to get people  to look at all these different kinds of aspects   but then we said with all that rich information  you know can you um put you know additional   detail in your bcp not all of it but where it  makes sense okay anything to add mark or carol well yeah i was just going to say yes we do  conduct annual risk assessments and i don't   often have to change a lot because not risks don't  often change year to year and and you can do a   casual just passover of oh yeah these are all the  same kind of things but um you know every couple   of years it's better to dive a little deeper and  expose some things like steven was talking about   yeah so we do annual but i think what we've  learned is back to the theme you know i think   we're gonna have to look a little deeper into the  woods for the wolves that are lurking out there   that uh our imagination here to do forward and  envision so uh um opportunity for learning growth   okay sometimes it takes a little yeah sometimes  takes a little bit to get this thing established   if you haven't been doing it on a formal basis but  to carol's point after you get it established then   you know your business is not going to change  so much that the risk assessment is going to   change um a lot what we also try to do uh carol  is we try to do a two by two and basically put   dots on where people fall in certain kinds of  risk levels and now there's our risk profile   standing in front of us physically and how  do you want to manipulate that to move that   because the other balance is don't move  every if everything is all done by the bottom   you know left quadrant then i'm not too sure  how you're operating as a business because   you're so locked down who wants to do business  with you and then there's a balance on the other   end where oh you're pretty risky in the way that  you're operating you're probably being sued left   and right so you know so there's different  and that just can you know deeply inform you   and and and having a strategic conversation  about that once you do all that detailed work   um it can then allow you to almost bcp is  your execution uh plans when stuff happens   so so i'd just like to close it out with  with just a comment from each of you   uh where relative this conversation where do you  think we will be in a year like two to three years   down the road you know i i i think about the issue  of of uh data privacy and breaches and hackers and   i remember 10 15 years ago suddenly there was a  much greater understanding of wow this is stuff   we can't mess around with we've got to be locked  down we've got to understand what fishing is   we have to understand how to protect corporate  assets and there was definitely a consciousness   raising process is that where we'll be with bcp do  you think there's going to be a much more active   dialogue relative to strategy and things or is  that overplaying it you know again two to three   years down the road i i i was just gonna say i  think that um bc is now going to be a well known   term in business and well-versed and we've looked  into whereas in the past it didn't have nearly   as much visibility so i'm glad to see it get  better visibility for the for the length and   strength of the company going forward um but  um that's that's basically how i feel about it   instead of giving and then here to stay uh  and yeah you can overdo it but i think once   you figure out the hybrid of how things are  going to be working with the with the people   over the next year or two i think that's going to  really drive where you take the bc plans thank you who's i'll next in um yeah i think i think we've  gained a more higher awareness of uh being more um   certain in how we uh assess our bcps uh and again  it's going to be i hate to keep kicking the same   dog around but it's imagine what we were kind of  wrote about it i don't think we can be wrote about   it anymore we're going to have to really stretch  our thinking and but then balance it to practical   things but um you know i i think this is a tie  change that we have experienced in business and   it's an opportunity for some real growth if  companies and enterprises choose to accept   it as that and maybe that becomes a competitive  advantage that we gain over others i i don't know   you have to be seen but um it's out there now  it's uh the genies out the bottle so yeah not   just liverpool mark what mark said and that is i  think we're going to have to go visit that uh risk   assessment um um planning and and because it's  we're transforming what the workplace looks like   there's going to be a balance on remote and  on premise there's going to be a is going   to be a balance between are they contingent  workers that our people are operating with   or is it full-time and then we have to do is  build the bcp upon that new operating model   and i think that's where some work is going to  need to be done we might be thinking about well we   got to be more prepared for a pandemic happening  because it happened in our lives right in front   of us every 100 years no it's gonna these things  are probably going to happen more frequently but   something else is transforming right underneath  our feet in front of our eyes and that is   the actual workplace is changing and so how  prepared are we for managing that um and from   uh you know disaster recovery or bcp planning  perspective we need to do some work and upgrade   those uh for that for that new that new future  mode in the next three to five three to five years   excellent okay well you know you've all given  us some great insights today honestly very very   helpful uh carol mark and stephen we very much  appreciate it also our friends at datamark for   putting on this program today it's been a pleasure  to be part of it i'm sure we'll be in touch   with this uh going forward again have a great  afternoon thanks for joining thank you thank you

2021-04-06 08:19

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