Lessons From Hurricane Crisis Management

Bob DiLossi is the Director of the SunGard Crisis Management Center. A long-time business continuity practitioner, Bob provides some commentary in this post concerning lessons gleaned from crisis management in the midst of severe weather events, such as hurricanes. 1. Does the Crisis Management Team do anything different once a hurricane has been named and a projected path is announced by the National Weather Service? It's important to recognize that we monitor all weather events, not just hurricanes in-season. What makes weather events unique is that sometimes, you have a warning period that allows for review of plans and preparation. Right now we are tracking a tropical storm over the … Read more

Recovery in the Cloud Boosts Hurricane Season Preparedness

Hurricane season brings into focus the need for companies to reexamine disaster recovery plans.  As we've been meeting with companies on how to prepare for the volatile weather season, we advise organizations to approach hurricane preparedness not as a reactive disaster recovery process but as the opportunity to manage a hurricane as a planned event. The plan process can benefit organizations not just on their worst day, in the wake of a disaster, but every day, by revealing critical gaps in the availability of production environments. Unlike many other weather-related events, hurricanes have a relatively long warning time-frame, which can allow for the proactive relocation of people and cor … Read more

Designing for Failure Conditions

Today we hear from Chip Childers, product architect for SunGard’s Enterprise Cloud Services and partners with our product management and product engineering teams to drive the overall solution design of the service…CM I’m a big fan of designing systems to deal with component failures. But let's be honest, doing that perfectly is pretty darn hard. In the research paper all possible sources of fault conditions have been classified into 16 different categories. In another paper, "Software Architecture Reliability Analysis using Failure Scenarios," an 8-step failure analysis process is proposed for how to understand a system's potential failure conditions. All this is about identifying and clas … Read more

DocuSign Bolsters Global Network Infrastructure with SunGard Hosting and Managed Network Services

When you support large financial companies, your data center gets audited. Period. It used to be that clients demanded the audit themselves. Now, with the passage of Sarbanes Oxley in 2002, the U.S. government requires audits on a regular basis. Every 3-party IT vendor for a financial company undergoes the same audit that the client undergoes for its in-house environment. It’s the law. Another layer of regulations come into play if a 3-party IT-vendor handles records that contain electronic signatures, whether emails, contracts or faxes. Something called “SSAE 16 Type II” went into effect on June 15th of this year. It requires certain tested solutions have to be in place for the network, and … Read more

A Fresh Perspective on Resilience Exercises

Reading a Harvard Business Review Blog this week triggered this thought on resilience: when conducting any validation exercise, it is important to invite “outsiders” to participate. John Baldini, writing for HBR, noted that management coaching involves having an outsider suggest ways to improve your perspective on reality and decision making, with the suggestion to invite others into routine meetings from outside the normal attendee list. It adds energy and creates some fresh dialog.  Baldini writes: "A new perspective can allow a leader to make certain that what she sees is reality, not her perception of reality." That statement applies equally well to resilience programs, too. … Read more

What does an Enterprise-Class Cloud Really Mean?

One of the most critical decisions a CTO can make is selecting the cloud environment for his or her company.  It is intimidating, complicated and crucially important.  When making that decision, it helps to know the attributes of the enterprise-class cloud, the “gold standard” for cloud computing.  Here are just a few. Fully managed and Highly Consultative By partnering with a leading vendor, you can leverage their IT expertise to architect the high-quality operations, recovery and business continuity processes your organization needs.  Their consultative approach helps to protect you from the many vulnerabilities experienced by companies acting without expert guidance. An enterpr … Read more

Hybrid Clouds — Use Cases and Considerations

Hybrid clouds are becoming more popular as companies seek to optimize their applications and data based on risk, architecture and business growth.  As a result, hybrid clouds are taking several different forms. The Cloud as Partner The most common hybrid cloud scenario is one in which a set of applications resides in the cloud with the remaining applications residing in the company’s on-site data center.  This arrangement enables the company to take advantage of the flexibility and cost-savings of the cloud where appropriate, while keeping control over more sensitive applications.   The Cloud as Proving Ground Another use of a cloud is temporary workspace.  For example, developers c … Read more

ZL Technologies Transforms Business Model with SunGard Cloud

ZL Technologies Transforms Business Model with SunGard Cloud For the last 12 years, ZL Technologies, Inc. (ZL) has provided large-scale record-management services to top global institutions in the finance industry.  They are specialists in records management, archiving and e-discovery solutions. ZL’s business has a number of unique characteristics.  For example, firms frequently need to search masses of historical emails for specific information for litigation.  Databases quickly grow as institutions generate more electronic data each day and regulations specify how long records are kept.  Regulatory requirements for security and governance are tight, and regular audits of IT-vendor proce … Read more