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Cost-cutting and complex IT raise risk of disruption

Stephen Pritchard
Financial Times
22 April 2009

This article reports how, as the number of IT-related failures grow, the focus is on making systems more resilient.  It estimates that as many as 40% of UK businesses faced disruptions because of IT problems.

The FT sought the view of Stuart Anderson, PA Consulting Group, who said:

“Even if you can recover successfully, there is always an impact,” says Stuart Anderson, a business continuity expert at PA Consulting. “We are now talking about business resilience and building in that resilience, rather than business continuity planning, or planning to fail. That has had its day.”

"Public sector organisations are increasingly looking at dispersal as a way to 'harden' their operations and services against disruption. The technology is there, but cultural and business change is also needed if you want to make the organisation more resilient. It is not just an IT issue.”

Mr Anderson continues: "During a short-term outage, such as bad weather, home working might be an option for some employees. But longer-term disruption would need more comprehensive measures, such as the move to a back-up site. For more disruptive incidents, factors ranging from morale to the availability of public transport, catering and even janitorial services will all need to be part of the plan."

"Businesses are planning for more, not less, uncertainty,” he says. “Unexpected events are likely to increase, so it is also about the resilience of your brand, your marketplace and ultimately, the resilience of your investors.”

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