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‘Branch in a box’ helps retailer’s business continuity strategy

UK-based consultancy, Jermyn Consulting, has developed a bespoke business continuity system for a leading electrical distribution chain.

Jermyn Consulting was called in by Lockwell Electrical Distributors, which has 19 branches around England and Wales supplying goods and services to the maintenance and installation sector.

Having recently won some big contracts Lockwell was determined to protect service levels in the event of a disruption and asked Jermyn Consulting to develop a simple business continuity system that the management team could adopt without creating an onerous burden to the business.

“Lockwell Electrical is a very ambitious company and has recently made some significant contract wins and has plans to grow further,” said Jermyn Consulting’s Taidhgh O’Regan.

“They wanted a system that would give their existing and new customers peace of mind. They already had some key elements of business continuity embedded within the organization, but had no formal structure. Key was an easy to use response process for the management team.

Jermyn Consulting liaised closely with the Lockwell team to assess risk and business impact and analyse how a business disruption would impact the company and its customers.

Getting under the skin of Lockwell Electrical allowed Jermyn Consulting to develop a business continuity strategy which addressed the needs of its Coventry HQ, a sample branch, IT and other key elements of the business.

A cornerstone of this was a bespoke ‘branch in a box’ concept which
Jermyn Consulting developed for Lockwell to allow rapid recovery of an individual branch.

The branch in a box is an enhancement of the standard battle box concept and contains all the things that a Lockwell branch manager needs to recover a branch in his or her town once an alternative temporary or permanent location is found.

Often battle boxes contain the things an emergency or crisis management team need (or an IT team needs such as backups etc) to operate but the branch in a box includes stationery, purchase orders, contact lists and a basic stock list etc. so that users can place orders and get up and running as soon as possible.

Taidhgh O’Regan explained: “Battle boxes are associated with incident management and therefore are targeted at businesses who provide services to other businesses. Very few outward facing or retailer/wholesaler style operations have such a system in place. While Lockwell is a multi-location wholesaler it would cause disruption to other parts of their business to move to another Lockwell site temporarily. The branch in a box concept allows them to move to their own unique alternative premises and be up and running within hours.”


•Date: 7th May 2014 • UK •Type: Article • Topic: Retail BC

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