- Is the captain of a company the CEO?
- Is it the board of directors?
- Is it the Stockholders?
I would argue yes and no. The customer most probably guides or “tugs” your ship through the turbulent waters of the industry you are in, more than you might think.
Since the driving force is out of your complete control, can your ship stand up to the pressures of high winds or traversing into territories which are uncharted? Is there a reef ahead waiting to break the spine of your vessel? Will Sirens lure your men into a false state of complacency?
While need necessitates the possible paths that you as the captain choose to follow, the infrastructure and robust nature of your data systems will be part of the viability of your success.
Companies must be robust enough to change directions or take on more massive task as the customer demands. As an SME in Data processing (Information Systems) and Disaster Recovery, frequently I find through the audit process that the ship is traversing the waters without a rudder, and an engine that is held together with duct tape and bailing wire.
Some of the critical problems in this industry are human nature, underperforming CIO’s, and lackadaisical staff. Other issues often include a CIO taking on the job of CFO.
Encouraged by upper management to rain in cost, the CIO might look for ways to cut the budget using poor quality sheets, and used line, taken from derelict ships that have already made their way to Davy Jones locker.
When the proverbial fork in the road or in keeping with the metaphor, when the winds change, will your company be ready?
Often, Board Members or CEO’s look at disaster recovery like insurance. It is much more than some policy that you purchase.
When you bring in a person or company, who specializes in Disaster Recovery many things happen.
The first two are a risk analysis and an audit of how you currently do business regarding Data processing. The scope, of course, can be more than just your data processing capabilities and often it is expanded to include all functions of your company.
Depending on the size of your company and its complexity this could be a project for a consultant, or it might include one or more FTE’s that maintain your ships viability into perpetuity.
While the Risk Analysis may or may not be a surprise to you, the audit will almost certainly be a surprise. Nobody wants someone poking around in their business.
Frequently those in charge of the department will make themselves scarce. While weekly meetings and deliverables are a must, I often find that an audit shakes things up, and that can be a good thing. This process also exposes any weak links in the proverbial chain.
Your IT department is a dynamic part of your company and often is the engine which drives your ship. While frequently looked at as a cost center, without it, your company I dare say would die on the vine or flounder.
In the final examination of your company, we will discover if you are ready for the next opportunity or the next fork in the road. We might also learn that you are treading water.
When the prevailing winds shift directions, will your ship be able to adjust?
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