Helping you increase resilience and avoid IT meltdown

With our knowledge and experience of implementing, managing and maintaining complex IT infrastructure we help you resolve the IT operational issues that are causing you pain today and avoid the hidden risks that will cause you pain tomorrow. 

    If you think IT operational resilience is all about having a Disaster Recovery procedure that aligns with your Business Continuity Plan, you are seriously underestimating the challenge.
    Think about it. How many times have you seen or heard of a DR plan being invoked? Let’s face it, it’s not a common occurrence.

    Now ask yourself how many times you have seen IT system availability impacted by poor change implementation, single points of failure, technology failure, inadequate testing, unsolved problems reappearing as disruptive incidents, …

    There’s no doubting a proven DR plan is a must-have. However, even the most comprehensive one will not stop the issues mentioned above from happening. Operational resilience runs much deeper than the DR plan. There is plenty you can do to prevent disasters happening in the first place.

    Running a good quality IT service for your organisation requires management capabilities that are fit for purpose. Processes, methods, techniques, procedures and best practices that ensure you implement IT change smoothly, deal with incidents calmly, detect and resolve underlying problems quickly, and manage complex infrastructure proactively so that it is secure, resilient and scalable.

    What is the perception of IT in your organisation?

    Service reliability:  is service quality excellent …
    or variable?

    Cost and resource:  well contained …
    or increasing year on year?

    Project delivery:  are your projects always on time …
    or frequently late?

    Quality of support:  always quick and helpful …
    or very much hit and miss?

    You may already be experiencing pain in some of these areas. How are you going to establish the cause and build an action plan?

    What about the invisible risks that lay hidden beneath the surface? The ones you don’t even know about that will cause serious damage and embarrassment when they suddenly become visible?

    The business is Growing: Are your IT management capabilities truly scalable? Or will you hit the tipping point where running IT becomes painfully inefficient?
    Implementing the new system: IT changes have been ok, but you’ve not done one as big as this for some time. Are you confident, or could it be a car crash?
    The systems are fine as they are: They’re a bit old and haven’t been upgraded for some time, but they work OK. Until the day when they don’t work ok and it takes a week to repair them.
    The high-profile project: Estimating has always been overly optimistic and most other projects have been 2-3 months late. Why will this one be any different?
    The major incident: Fortunately, you’ve never had to deal with a big one. Will your disaster recovery plan work, or will it crumble because it’s never been tested before?

    This is where we help

    Think of us as your friendly auditors.  Our Critical IT Capability Assessment will review your operational practices and management disciplines to identify which are fit for purpose and where there might be scope for improvement.

    We help you draw up your action plan and we offer project management services to help you get things delivered.

    Why we’re good at it

    We recognise every organisation is different and should have different targets for the strength and resilience of their operations capabilities. We define these levels by using our ‘TORC’ organisation classification profiling tool.
    We are IT people who understand Risk Management. That means we can get IT technicians engaged in the subject by making it relevant to their day jobs, as opposed to expecting them to understand convoluted risk language.

    Experience. We know … experience yada yada yada!  But take a moment to consider the following:


    We have experience of reviewing IT resilience for organisations with between 20 and 2,500 IT staff

    We’ve undertaken entire IT operations reviews as well as subject-focused assessments (IT DR, for example)
    We’re not just Windows and a bit of Linux. We’ve dealt with IBM mainframe system, UNIX, i-Series, Tandem, Teradata, and much more
    We’ve sat on your side of the desk. We know what it’s like to have to manage this complexity.
    We bring you 30 years of real experience, not people who graduated 3 years ago.

    Examples of our work


    We had identified a Head of Risk for the IT, Property and Procurement departments and wanted to demonstrate progress embedding the Society’s Risk Framework before that person was able to join us. BLMS Consulting were the ideal choice to fill this gap. Their experience is clear, but it was their flexibility which was important. In a short period of time they were able to deliver real benefit which will have lasting impact.

    Tom Clark, former CIO
    Leeds Building Society

    BLMS provided an interim manager to run the Help Desk and a second line technical support team. As well as leading these teams, the role also involved overseeing three significant technical infrastructure upgrade projects. Liaison with the Risk Management function was an important part of the role, ensuring that any serious project delays were clearly documented and risk accepted. During the contract period, BLMS also provided valuable guidance to the Service Management team.

    Financial Services

    BLMS partnered with ex-colleague and consultant Phil Tottie to evaluate the Disaster Recovery readiness and plans for a clothing manufacturer and retailer. The initial phase involved understanding the client’s systems and the way in which the infrastructure was implemented across their main IT sites. This topology presented some interesting options and opportunities, but also brought with it some issues that needed careful consideration. A comprehensive action plan was produced along with estimates for additional investment in infrastructure to ensure recovery capacity would not be an inhibitor.

    Clothing Manufacturer/Retailer

    When BLMS Consulting were engaged to help establish the Risk Management framework in the IT department they bought an injection of energy and focus. As a result of their involvement we are working much more effectively with our colleagues in the Risk department. This is critical as we evolve the approach which we are taking in the Society to manage Risk and there is now a much better understanding inside IT of what Risk Management is all about.

    Steven Roche, Engagement Lead
    Leeds Building Society

    Having developed a strategic IT plan for the charity and produced the business case for investment, BLMS took on the role of project manager to coordinate the implementation activities. This involved coordinating the work of three suppliers, a specialist consultant, and the local NHS Trust ICT team who provide onsite technical support for the charity. This was not a full-time role, the project management tasks equated to about a day per week on average, spread almost randomly over the week. Our flexibility was key to providing this part-time project management service. At one point, the testing of the applications became a significant and resource-hungry task and we stepped up our involvement to help manage and execute the test plan.

    Hospital Charity

    We were commissioned to assess the IT Disaster Recovery plans for a Financial Services company in Leeds. Our approach involved running workshops with technical support, operations, security, and application teams to evaluate each team’s readiness to invoke the recovery and continuity plan. Having done this with each team separately, we then brought everyone together in another workshop meeting to identify inter-dependencies between tasks and teams. This helped build a much more robust sequence of recovery activities and exposed several false assumptions that would have impaired the effectiveness of the recovery plan. We gave the client a cohesive set of actions that would mature their DR readiness and provide a basis for estimating the recovery time required for their most critical business services.

    Financial Services

    Our charity commissioned BLMS to review our IT infrastructure to make recommendations about how to systematise our processes to upscale our capabilities. They were also asked to create the infrastructure for a new e-filing system. Importantly, we requested that a business case be prepared to present the benefits of investing in our infrastructure, which was accepted by our Trustees. We enjoyed working with Brian (our main contact), who was clear, punctual to deadlines and commitments, helpful and professional at all times.

    Barbara Cathcart, CEO
    Nottingham Hospitals Charity

    BLMS ran a Personal Skills Development workshop for us. The course exceeded my expectations. Everybody enjoyed the 2 days, and the practical experiences that Brian and Kevin could draw upon made the course truly valuable. The course made us reflect and helped everybody learn more about their own personality characteristics. Not only has it helped our team members deal with internal work situations, it has also improved their confidence and capabilities for when they’re dealing with Razorblue’s clients.

    Mark Wilkinson, Director
    Razorblue Group Ltd