As the COVID-19 crisis has demonstrated, a solid Business Continuity Plan (BCP) is essential for any business. For some organisations, a BCP is a mandatory – with safeguards, measures and processes prescribed in detail. APRA-regulated institutions in the banking, finance, superannuation and insurance sectors, for example, are required to adhere to Prudential Standards CPS 232: Business Continuity Management and CPS 234: Information Security. Other industry regulatory authorities have their own standards for business resilience – government, healthcare, utilities and telecommunications are examples. Multinational companies operating in Australia may also need to comply with standards set by overseas governments or industry bodies to which their parent company must adhere.
Naturally, Interactive’s Business Continuity services are customised for each of our subscribers, according to the specific regulations they must comply with. Here are some of the ways we design and deliver business continuity services to closely meet each customer’s needs.
One of the major burdens of meeting any regulatory requirements is reporting. Some regulatory authorities also require regular audits. Many businesses spend numerous people/hours throughout the year working on compliance reports and then put in a massive effort before reporting deadlines. In fact, under some regimes, this requires entire teams working full time to assure and maintain compliance.
As their Business Continuity services provider, we are able to provide our customers with a certificate of compliance, ISO 27001: Information Security Management and ISO 9001: Quality Management certifications they need to ‘cover off’ the security and availability of the facilities and the IT systems they may need to access at short notice if they needed to declare an emergency. This is invaluable, as they would be unlikely to gain similarly valid proof of compliance from other temporary facilities such as managed or serviced office buildings.
Expert help with Business Continuity
When you become an Interactive Business Continuity customer, you are first introduced to your dedicated customer success manager who will look after you and deliver proactive care every day. Then you will meet your dedicated IT engineering team who will work with you to build a technically resilient backup solution tailored to you. This solution includes the management of your disaster recovery network, disaster recovery PC image and disaster recovery telephony solution. We test our processes regularly with every customer so we are always prepared. We can provide different levels of testing, from a simple technical test to a full-scale disaster simulation.
Importantly, our professionals are experienced in servicing APRA-regulated industries, and can modify and adjust where needed to accommodate any new or changing requirements. For example, Interactive has made many changes to our facilities during the current pandemic to meet our customers’ requirements, including specially designed suites so our customers can maintain the 1.5m social distancing. We have also included on-site cleaning facilities to keep our customers safe, as well as installing thermal imaging cameras at each location.
Finally, to enable our customers to meet their own regulatory needs, we have invested heavily in achieving (and maintaining) accreditation in world-best security standards. This enables us to deliver not only a range of business continuity services to highly regulated sectors, but also data centre hosting, cloud managed services and other secure services across the range of our customer delivery.
Critically, we are certified to industry best practice standards ISO 27001: Information Security Management and ISO 9001: Quality Management. Together, these provide a level of assurance that Interactive’s risks are being effectively managed and that we systematically adhere to our policies and procedures to ensure consistent, high-quality and secure services to our customers. Again, this level of assurance is unavailable from a typical managed office scenario.
To illustrate this, there are two aspects to meeting APRA Prudential Standards: location and data security. This means that our Business Continuity Suites must be highly physically secure to comply. (We’ve recently added to that security to keep viruses out – with upgraded access security and temperature cameras!) Beneath that, all data stored on behalf of our customers must be subject to a protective security infrastructure.
BC track record
Interactive has now had two decades of experience delivering business continuity services along the east coast of Australia. That level of experience enabled us to respond fast and effectively to the coronavirus pandemic when it threw up multiple new challenges – as it did during the Brisbane floods of 2011.
The bottom line is that we provide the highest standard of service and security to all customers – regardless of whether you are an APRA-regulated entity, a government agency or a small business.
If you’d like to discuss your business continuity arrangements with a BC expert, visit our website or talk to your Interactive Account Manager.