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We have worked with companies large and small – across continents and throughout different sectors. Below are three examples which generate the sort of work we do.
Strengthening the chain
We were commissioned by a global engineering manufacturer, who worked across six continents. The firm relied on thousands of specialist suppliers – many producing just a single tool or cable. If a link in the chain failed, a major product could be compromised.
We have worked with them to create a dataset of potential vulnerabilities across their purchasing network. The aim is to identify potential weaknesses within supply chains, helping suppliers to improve their resilience. Following on from this, we have turned the risk dashboard into a comprehensive survey. This has been sent to a group of sample sites, to gauge the scale of the challenge.
The returns received will identify risks for business continuity within supply chains. Ultimately, the goal is a business resilience ‘census’ of the full network. Beyond helping our client, this will safeguard all the organisations in the supplier system.
We were asked to develop a BCP for a food-producing company in late 2018. Based in Europe, the firm had established a global reach. As a result, the company setup varied between four manufacturing units – each making different products, and each geared to different markets.
There was clearly a need to streamline their business continuity. But the individual facilities were cautious about standardisation. To overcome this, we created a set of templates, which everyone could add to – inputting the processes which they had developed. The idea was to build into the finalised documents the specific learning which different branches of the company had accrued, so that best practice could be rolled out.
This was a process of scaling up, not levelling down. The whole organisation was brought to a high standard, without losing institutional knowledge along the way.
Rolling Out Best Practice
The fruit sector is challenging from a risk perspective. It is reliant on tight supply chains and seasonal factors around produce. With this in mind, we were taken on by a large SME in 2017, who specialise in sourcing and supplying fresh fruit to the UK market. They were growing fast, and wanted to put steps in place to manage long-term risks to business continuity.
To begin with we conducted a Business Impact Assessment (BIA). This focused on the unique impact of seasonal and geographic variations on different produce, as well as on production line resilience. From the BIA, the Business Continuity Plan (BCP) was formulated to mitigate against the most serious threats.
Having created these frameworks, we worked on rollout. This included crisis command training with key staff, as well as tabletop sessions (deploying our decision-making tool, Crisisboardroom). This ongoing work has helped to integrate the BCP across the organisation, and we continue to carry out bespoke training to those maintaining the plan.