We’ve all experienced the benefits of having a backup plan. Whether it’s pressure-testing our cybersecurity strategy or industrializing processes to enhance operations, we plan ahead so we can keep our business running smoothly.

But preparation isn’t everything. To cope with the shockwaves of change, we need to invest in the technologies and digital workforce that can give us the flexibility we need to make the impossible, possible—even in a pandemic!

Like many global organizations, we depend on certain things happening across Accenture locations around the world. Take our Finance function for instance; 70% of our Finance team’s services are performed in intelligent operations centers and many involve complex accounting, business and tax advisory activities. We depend on all that happening as a matter of course to keep the wheels of our business turning.

It means that robust business resilience needs to be baked into our organization, so that we can continue to serve our clients and work with them to help them do the same.

Three core programs

We’ve always recognized how important it is get new technologies working in harmony with our people. That’s why our business resilience strategy relies on three core programs that blend tech and talent:

Business continuity focuses on developing and implementing processes to support continued business operations. We do a lot of analysis and implement solutions based on risks and requirements, conducting training (in-house and with vendors) and maintaining and measuring compliance.

Technology continuity focuses on the technology required to continue running mission-critical systems—anything from data centers to data backup, specialist support teams, testing and exercising programs.

Crisis management focuses on Accenture people and facilities—preventing, mitigating, preparing for, responding to and recovering from conditions that threaten life, property, or operations. As an example, our Global Asset Protection team helped us respond quickly to the global pandemic when we set up a Pandemic Task Force in China and surrounding areas as early as January 2020.

Agility-first approach

Supporting our clients is a team of more than 85 dedicated business resilience members. To date, they’ve helped us to create more than 4,600 business continuity plans for clients across 49 countries.

Business resilience includes every aspect of how you operate, serve and run. Here’s some of the things you might want to consider to reinforce your own resilience:

  1. Invest in everyone: We have modified our technology approach toward a “one person, one machine” strategy. This means we have more than 500,000 people, all using workstations and mobiles that can communicate securely and reliably in every corner of the world.
  2. Commit to the cloud: Accenture IT infrastructure is now 95% in the public cloud. That not only means we’re saving cost by spending half as much as our legacy delivery models, but also gives us new IT potential through flexible and resilient capabilities.
  3. Collaborate for continuity: We bring together specialists in various disciplines across the organization to deliver an integrated, cross-functional strategy and enjoy the shared success of a more robust, resilient business.

Although business continuity is never guaranteed, our approach is helping our own company and others around the world to build resilience and manage change. Take a look at our case study for more on how you can be more prepared, ready and resilient.

Erin Harris

Managing Director – Corporate Services & Sustainability, Business Resiliency Services

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