Disaster Recovery in Unpredictable Times: An Expert Q&A

Disaster Recovery in Unpredictable Times

This is part of Solutions Review’s Premium Content Series, a collection of contributed columns written by industry experts in maturing software categories. In this submission, IPC CTO Tim Carmody sat down with our editorial team for an expert Q&A on disaster recovery in unpredictable times.

Why is disaster recovery such an important subject for so many businesses?

The coronavirus pandemic made clear the need for disaster recovery plans and solutions for virtually every industry, but even before the pandemic, remote and mobile workforces were clearly the direction almost every industry was headed. This decentralization of the workforce increases the need for planning and preparation for a broad range of contingencies because even if a business interruption is localized geographically, it could still have ripple effects throughout the entire organization. Such interruptions could include — but are not limited to — political unrest, natural disasters, future contagious diseases, and a litany of other unpredictable events that could jeopardize a business’ most critical operations.

Given that IPC is in financial services, what does proper disaster recovery preparation entail for that industry?

Prior to the pandemic, the financial sector had grappled with regulatory and security hurdles regarding disaster recovery preparations. For instance, remote trading operations were extremely rare previously due to compliance and surveillance requirements.

But, two significant shifts have since occurred: regulators loosened their stance on remote operations due to the pandemic, and have continued to accommodate hybrid work arrangements given their success over the last two years. Second, the continued acceptance of cloud technology in financial services has driven the uptake of flexible, subscription-based services that can be activated and used anywhere, anytime, which certainly includes disaster recovery solutions.

What does IPC offer for disaster recovery solutions?

IPC offers a turnkey trading communications solution for financial institutions’ business continuity needs. It is a SaaS service that allows all traders within a firm to have ubiquitous access to a custom-designed virtual trading desk from any location worldwide.

IPC saw enormous uptake of its offering during the coronavirus pandemic. As you might expect, an open trading floor filled with personnel presented a significant potential health risk. With the virtual disaster recovery trading desk, critical personnel could work from any location during an emergency and have full access to trading counterparties, assistance with trading compliance, network security, and more.

What else do you think businesses should know about disaster recovery planning and preparation, and what does the future hold?

At a high level, one of the few silver linings of the coronavirus pandemic was that it drove home the need for businesses to embed backup and disaster recovery measures at every level of the organization. Certainly, there have been significant business disruptions before, but generally, they were regional in scope. But today’s modern, globally connected world necessitates an even greater degree of preparation, and that has been starkly driven home after the events of 2020.

With respect to financial services specifically, IPC is seeing an important shift in mindset within the financial markets: traders and other industry participants know now they can reliably and resiliently thrive with a mobile workforce, albeit by smartly leveraging cloud computing so that if and when disaster does strike again, their business will be prepared.

Tim Carmody
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