The Client

University image

This specialist university with an international intake and a global reach operates from numerous separate buildings situated within a compact city campus.

The Challenge

Prior to approaching Teed, the university had been forced to completely close the campus due to an unforeseen loss of power. This incident highlighted the requirement for effective business continuity planning and Teed were appointed to support the newly appointed Director of Business Continuity with addressing this requirement.

Like most Universities, the facilities and infrastructure had been built up over many years and consideration of business continuity issues had rarely been taken into account when making changes. Therefore, there were numerous potential single points of failure and risk exposures that would need to be addressed. Also the close proximity of campus buildings and common dependencies meant that a single event could potentially deny the use of all primary facilities.

It was recognised that the large intake of international and post graduate students was very dependent upon maintaining student confidence, services and reputation, whatever happens. Therefore, the importance of putting in place effective business continuity strategies to deal with any type of disruption was paramount.

The Solution

Select representatives from all departments and divisions were taken through business impact analysis interviews to allow critical activities, recovery priorities and minimum resource requirements to be defined. The identification of recovery timescales at different times of year was achieved for all key functions (e.g. student registration, examinations, graduation etc.).

Potential recovery strategies were explored for satisfying the minimum requirements of the business and academic areas and a recommendations report produced that clearly defined the current position, the requirements to achieve effective business continuity and the actions that should now be taken to fill any gaps and complement the existing university planned activity. The recommendations were presented to the university business continuity steering group and agreed accordingly.

Teed consultants then provided templates, methods and guidance to allow business continuity plans to be developed throughout the institution. Select discussions were undertaken and completed plans produced. Input was also provided during initiatives to consider other specific threats (e.g. pandemic planning, IT disaster recovery solution implementation, analysis to determine appropriate campus network upgrades etc.).

The Result

Effective plans and solutions are now in place to allow the loss of any one building or group of buildings to be sustained. Pandemic plans are in place, as well as an incident management structure that would allow other threats to university services to be managed.