What is Business Continuity and Why is it Tested?
Today marked the second test of the Business Continuity Policy at Bulldog Financial Planning. The process went smoothly and took about half of a day.
What does Business Continuity mean?
Business continuity is the term used to describe the capability to continue operations while experiencing a business disruption(s) without compromising customer information. Businesses can be disrupted by a number things including natural disasters, internet outages, and electricity outages.
As an independent registered investment advisory firm, Bulldog Financial Planning maintains a Business Continuity Policy that describes:
1) General information related to the risks present to the business during an outage,
2) The policy for communicating to clients, prospects, and the professional network during the outage
3) The process for continued service delivery, and important contact phone numbers.
The test earlier this week represented the execution of the policy without an outage.
Why perform the testing?
The policy is tested to ensure that communications are effective, and that clients will still receive service in the event of an outage.
For example, the contact information was updated to include the phone number to contact the Interactive Broker's division for Advisor Clients. This is to be used in the event of a severe outage effecting my company's ability to process an urgent money movement request.
Why does BFP use a broker dealer and custodian?
As an independent fee-only financial planning company, Bulldog Financial Planning does not own or operate a Broker Dealer or Custodian. Bulldog Financial Planning is not affiliated with any Broker Dealer or Custodian and does not receive compensation for the Broker Dealer or Custody services.
BFP is not required to use any particular Broker Dealer or Custodian. Over the last few months, Interactive Broker's was added as a location for BFP Managed Accounts. This is in addition to Shareholder Services Group. At its discretion, BFP may even discretionarily manage non-BFP accounts held at different Broker Dealers or Custodians.
BFP can work with clients to see what is best for them, not the company. This includes discussions about rollovers or transfer of assets. My company has a fiduciary responsibility to its clients.