Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Planning
XPS Pensions Group is continuing to monitor the situation arising from the threat of Coronavirus and its impact on our staff and business. Our multiple offices, and IT infrastructure which supports remote working as part of business as usual mean that, at this stage in the pandemic, we are confident that we can continue to operate with little disruption. However, this note is aimed to update you on what actions XPS Pensions Group is currently taking to prepare for potential disruption as a result of staff illness, locations being inaccessible, wider government restrictions or supply chain issues.
Business Continuity Plan
Given the unprecedented nature of the situation, we have established a working party to manage our response, headed by our Chief Operating Officer. We recognise that this is a fast moving and unpredictable situation, and the business is adopting a flexible approach in response, in conjunction with regular meetings of our Executive Committee.
All staff have been provided with guidance on good practice measures that should be taken to help protect themselves against the new coronavirus, along with instructions on what actions they should take if they believe they may have been in contact with the virus.
In light of the emerging threats we have strengthened our ability to support widespread remote working. We have confirmed that remote working is possible for all critical staff and processes and have made sure that we have the associated equipment / technology required to ensure we can continue to provide core services (including pensioner payroll & client banking & investment transactions) in the event of material business disruption arising from staff illness and or office closure. This has included sourcing additional equipment to ensure extended remote working capability is in place to provide critical processes if there is very significant UK wide disruption (‘peak disruption’).
We have also reviewed our supply chain to ensure we understand our reliance on key third parties and have identified appropriate contingency plans e.g. alternate approved suppliers.
We are in advance stages of planning to ensure high levels of service if the disruption were to continue over an extended period.
We have validated our staff emergency communication facility, which enables us to notify and provide updates to our staff by text messaging should the need arise, as well as confirming local plans.
We have implemented a series of rolling tests of the ability of our systems to sustain a significant shift to remote working. These are designed to not only confirm that critical staff can access the necessary systems but that working practices during an incident will continue to provide the degrees of quality and security we have committed to with our clients.
In addition all staff have been instructed not to travel to any XPS office other than their local office for the time being to avoid potential cross contamination between locations. However, staff will attend client meetings where required unless it means mixing with ‘non local’ XPS staff, in which case we will offer teleconferencing or videoconferencing alternatives.
We shall continue to monitor UK Government guidance and will adapt our plans in response to any change. We will proactively provide further communication as the situation develops.
Should you have any specific questions please contact: Risk@xpsgroup.com