A recovery workplace keeps trades flowing
With corporate offices in New York, Nashville and London, Klimansky’s team is responsible for workplace recovery solutions that span the company’s global research and investment operations. Sungard AS Workplace Recovery Centers in London, Long Island City and New York protect these business operations from the impact of disaster or disruption.
In the New York metro area alone, three AB locations support the entire U.S. The Sungard AS Long Island City facility provides an alternate, ready-to-use emergency office environment, playing a critical role in meeting the demands of AB customers who expect recovery in the shortest amount of time.
“When we have due diligence calls with clients and prospects, they ask about our business continuity and crisis management plans,” Klimansky says. “That’s why we have strategically located sites in the metro area, so they know we can resume operations without any logistical challenges for our key staff resources.”
The solution provides fully dedicated recovery suites, reserved solely for the use of AB employees. Designed to AB’s precise specifications, the environment includes 98 seats split into two workspaces, complete with desktops and phones, as well as Bloomberg terminals and news feeds for financial analysts and traders. The suites also include a telecom room, a canteen and a conference room with laptops for additional people.
If a disruption impacts an AB site, workers can quickly relocate to the nearest recovery center. Weekly software image updates keep AB’s production and recovery environments in sync to speed productivity once employees arrive.
One suite supports research analysts and buy-side traders from finance, legal and other operations. The other, equipped with technology not typically suited for working at home, is used exclusively for sell-side traders. It features 12 desks large enough to fit the eight-to-ten monitors that give traders the data access needed for efficient decision making and operations.
“Having a dedicated recovery space was the way to go,” Klimansky says. “If an issue arises, it makes it easier for them to start working again seamlessly as soon as they get to the recovery center.”
A rich history with Sungard AS
When Hurricane Sandy hit in 2012, New York and New Jersey suffered severe damage, leaving nearly two million people without power. The Sungard AS Recovery Center, located in Carlstadt, NJ at the time, provided a sheltered workplace for more than 3,000 Sungard AS customers including 100 AB employees over the course of three weeks. The storm hit on Sunday, and many workers were in the Sungard AS facility on Monday.
“While our offices remained intact with backup generators and uninterruptible power supply, employees who lived in New Jersey couldn’t get into New York,” explains Klimansky. “When our staff arrived at the Carlstadt site, we had the network connectivity and power needed, so it was almost business as usual for us.”
The Long Island Recovery Center also provided a site for mission-critical AB workers after Hurricane Isaias in 2020, which again knocked out power in upstate New York and New Jersey—and all during the workforce challenges of dealing with COVID-19.
A three-pronged pandemic response
While the pandemic paralyzed the workforces of many companies, AB’s workplace recovery plan eased what could have been a productivity-halting experience.
“Once we saw the pandemic coming and cases starting to add up, our technology teams started shipping PCs to traders’ homes,” confirms Klimansky. Zoom and other remote support tools assisted them with their operational setups.
This was all part of AB’s multi-point resilience strategy to disperse traders across three workplaces, meeting continuity needs and the COVID-19 pandemic health response protocols.
“Trading is our most critical function, so we wanted to make sure it was supported in three separate areas,” he explains. “If traders at home lost power, this strategy enabled us to have traders not only in the office, but also in the Sungard AS Recovery Center.”