Barclays Egypt’s efforts to maintain business continuity during the country’s recent civil unrest have been recognised with an international award.
Following the launch of a programme designed to ensure the safety of colleagues and provide a consistent service for customers, Barclays Egypt won the Most Effective Recovery of the Year category in the Business Continuity Management Awards, presented in London on 25 May.
The accolade marks the work of Barclays Egypt’s Crisis Leadership Team earlier this year. Amid violent political protests in Cairo, the Central Bank of Egypt declared a series of non-banking days between 30 January and 6 February, and the team invoked comprehensive business continuity plans.
All critical functions were moved to sites away from the city centre, all business travel to Egypt was suspended and expatriate colleagues and their families were flown out of the country as a matter of urgency.
During this time, the only means of interaction between customers and the bank was the ATM network and Contact Centre.
While vandalism initially rendered telecoms equipment across Cairo unavailable, Barclays Egypt teams were able to restore the Contact Centre’s communications lines within 50 hours, making the bank among the first in the country to resume operations.
Contact Centre teams handled an average of 3,000 calls from customers within the permitted four-hour working times during the period – equivalent to a full day’s worth of calls.
Branches were permitted to open for restricted hours from 6 February, operating under rigorous military security and within transactional guidelines imposed to support the country’s financial stability.
Khalid El Gibaly, CEO, Barclays Egypt, said: “This award is a tribute to the professionalism of our colleagues in Barclays Egypt.
“In the midst of an unprecedented crisis our people persevered, maintaining a clear focus on serving our customers and keeping our operations running.”
Dermot McCarthy, GRB Business Continuity Management, added: “This award recognises the tremendous response of our colleagues in Egypt to an extraordinary sequence of events.
“The ability to react to the fast-changing situation proved the value of having a documented and tested programme in place.”