Spring Conference: Leave Complacency Out Of Business PlansSpring Conference: Leave Complacency Out Of Business Plans
Deutsche Bank's director of business-continuity management is concerned that, six months after the terrorist attacks, businesses have fallen back into old habits.
March 19, 2002
AMELIA ISLAND, Fla.--Roseann McSorley has a message for all IT professionals. Disaster recovery and business continuity is your responsibility, no matter what your job function is, Deutsche Bank AG's director of business-continuity management told attendees at InformationWeek's Spring Conference.
Deutsche Bank had more than 5,700 employees working in downtown Manhattan on Sept. 11, many of them in a building right across from the World Trade Center on Liberty Street. A coordinated continuity plan--which included everything from bus service contracts (to get employees to new locations in the event of an emergency) to a plan to bring its money-transfer business back up within two hours--helped the bank emerge from the disaster. But now, six months later, McSorley wonders if some businesses have grown complacent about business-continuity efforts. And she's spreading the message that IT employees have to help others realize that complacency has no place in smart business plans. "You need to make sure you have an agenda to cover backup for everything you're responsible for," she says. "If the business manager tells you there's no money for a backup server for a project, you have to make sure everyone knows the risks" of not having one. Not everyone has succumbed to complacency. For instance, the Securities Industry Business Continuity and Management Group had fostered business-continuity collaboration before Sept. 11, but its efforts since then have taken on even more urgency. It's working on formal plans for a securities industry command center and preparing to help companies develop possible upcoming government regulations for business continuity for the industry. It's only when companies have coordinated business-continuity efforts that they can move ahead, even after such traumatic events, McSorley says. "There was a minute and a half when I had a panic attack," after learning what was happening on Sept. 11, she says. But then, from her home office, where she was working that day, McSorley invoked the crisis-management plans the company had devised to get Deutsche Bank started on the road to recovery.
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