No Match Found
Our growing reliance on technology means it is increasingly common for organisations to suffer system failure, causing significant distress to their operations. Recent examples of how companies have been impacted by systems failure include:
Such incidents have the potential to cause severe financial, operational and reputational problems for the organisation, including high costs associated with managing the fallout.
Consumer reactions and regulatory responses to a system failure can result in lost customer revenues and substantial reputational damage. News of the failure can spread extremely quickly on social media, and at the same time regulators’ expectations are increasing. As a result, effective and rapid situational response and crisis management need to be a strategic priority.
Rapidly and effectively responding to a significant systems failure can be challenging. Some of the common obstacles include:
These challenges highlight the complexities in managing the fallout of a significant systems failure and rapid mobilisation of an effective remediation operation.
Taking definitive action within the first 48 hours is critical. In our experience, many companies are unprepared and lose time during this vital period. They focus on organising a response team and obtaining information to enable decisions to be made, whilst the story continues to progress unchecked. As a result, the issue continues to grow. Below, we identify the four pillars of successful systems failure response.
We can quickly understand the end-to-end technology landscape relevant to the incident; for example:
We can help you understand why a major incident happened, how the risks within the organisation’s technical environment contributed, and how to prevent it happening again.
We can set up and run a crisis ‘war room’ to lead your crisis response, or shore up your existing strategic and operational capacity when needed. We can help prepare or review your crisis response strategy, governance, crisis communications and stakeholder management plans. We can mobilise within hours to provide operational, regulatory and legal support, as well as technical analysis.
We have considerable experience in managing large-scale and complex remediation exercises relating to systems failure.
When a systems failure occurs, a successful response is dependent on your ability to access all relevant data. Identifying structured data sources in a complex environment calls for particular technical capabilities and technology tools. Our specialist team are experts in capturing data, from ERP systems to trading and point of sale systems.
When crisis hits you, understanding large and complex datasets can be difficult, yet a successful outcome is dependent on your ability to analyse and draw meaningful conclusions. Our skilled data scientists are experts in analytics and visual representation of data. We make your complex data easy to use and understand.
PwC’s claims management solution is fully customisable, scalable and can be deployed at your offices. We can provide dedicated customer management teams for short bursts or longer term support for customer-facing functions.
We can help you evaluate your options around third party disputes and insurance claims in the wake of system failure, and work with you to consider potential outcomes and resolution mechanisms.
Systems failure can be extremely complex and highly disruptive. PwC can rapidly scale up your response to limit the financial, regulatory and reputational impact. To find out more, please get in touch with our dedicated team.
Nature of failure: IT outage that significantly disrupted the company’s operations.
How we helped: PwC was engaged to undertake a rapid post-incident technical and operational review to help isolate the root cause of the incident and provide a set of recommendations to help prevent similar outages.
We provided a chronological incident report mapping the end-to-end technology landscape and assessing the current delivery model, including the functions provided by third party providers.
Nature of failure: Significant IT outage that caused systems to be inoperable for ten days
How we helped: PwC was engaged to investigate the incident. We found that there were multiple single points of failure in the hosting technology, which the client understood to be resilient. We also found that key service and supplier management processes were not sufficient to manage system resilience. We then helped the client through the remediation programme, from both a technology and process perspective.
Partner, Digital & Forensic Investigations, PwC United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)7801 216737
Deals Chief Technology Officer & Innovation Leader, PwC United Kingdom
Tel: +44 (0)7931 304666