Country Road

Country Road is Australia’s first lifestyle brand with its international head office located in Richmond, Melbourne. It has about 300 employees at head office and more than 2,000 store based employees worldwide.

Case study – IT – Disaster Recovery

It has an on-line store which provides 24/7 internet shopping services, 80 retail stores and more than 80 concession outlets in Australia, South Africa, Asia, UK and New Zealand, with the organisation now operating as a 24/7/365 global business.

The Country Road Data Centre had grown in line with business growth, with the ICT environment supporting all communications, business applications and systems.  It had become increasingly complex, with its availability and reliability underpinning the majority of business process.

The leadership team recognised the impact on business operations of a Data Centre and ICT failure and embarked on developing and implementing an appropriate ICT disaster recovery solution and plan commensurate with the size and complexity of the business.

Pitcher Partners was engaged to assist with the selection and implementation of an off-site Disaster Recovery site, where the business would continue operations should anything happen to the head-office facility.

Pitcher Partners worked closely with the Country Road business and ICT team to ensure business imperatives were understood and recommendations and actions would match business and ICT strategic objectives.

The leadership team and ICT department received regular reports on outcomes and results by Pitcher Partners who provided assistance through the delivery of:

  • A Business Impact Assessment (BIA) document and register that identified all systems and applications used to operate the entire business, their interaction and dependencies with each other, along with relevant business owners. 
  • A detailed set of business, functional and technical requirements were collected and included within a detailed Request for Proposal (RFP) for IT DR Services. 
  • A robust and detailed selection process was completed that included a detailed analysis of RFP responses.  A recommendation report was provided as the best Vendor meet requirements and needs.  A negotiation and contractual process was entered with the successful vendor.
  • An ICT Disaster Recovery Plan document placed in one central location the ICT procedures, Crisis Management processes and detailed information necessary for Country Road to recover from a disaster.
  • A test of the ICT Disaster Recovery Plan was conducted involving all key members of the ICT team, to determine the strengths and weaknesses with the Plan and required remedial activities.

All documentation was then provided to Country Road’s ICT professionals, who proceeded with the migration of equipment and data to the winning Vendor’s disaster recovery site.

As a result of the Pitcher Partners engagement and approach, Country Road benefited by:

  • Demonstrating core ASIC and corporate governance requirements, to satisfy ASX, auditors and business partners.
  • Improved strategic planning, risk management and budgeting processes, procedures and techniques.
  • Streamlined and improved core business processes efficiency.
  • Mitigation of Disaster Recovery risks and exposure through improved planning, systems and processes as well as staff training in the event of a disaster event.
  • Foundation for developing Business Continuity Plans and Procedures for individual internal departments.

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