CIO.com – How CIOs Prepare for the Worst

Three CIOs discuss how a successful business continuity plan requires prioritization, awareness and testing

Prioritize What You Protect

Michael Rosello, SVP & CIO, Alliance Data: To really assess the effectiveness of a business continuity and disaster recovery plan, you’d need to invoke it, but you’d never want to do that. We’ve spent a lot of time over the past five years crafting every aspect of our plan–from making the process, methodology and technology investments that support business continuity to testing it in mock exercises.

As a mid-market company, we have established many partnerships, and our partners have their own business continuity and disaster recovery processes, so we are continually revamping our plans to work with theirs. Our partners are just as critical to our continuity processes as our own business units. Ultimately, a plan is only as good as all the people who go along with it.

We conduct a business impact analysis on our environment to prioritize the most critical components and test those. When you work with multibillion-dollar enterprises that have lots of moving parts spread over the country, you can’t test everything.

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