CEC Theses and Dissertations

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Title

Application of Computer Simulation Modeling to Evaluate Business Continuity Plans

Date of Award

2008

Document Type

Dissertation - NSU Access Only

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Information Science (DISC)

Department

Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences

Advisor

Easwar A Nyshadham

Committee Member

James Cannady

Committee Member

William Hafner

Abstract

Business continuity plans (BCP) help organizations plan for and withstand the occurrence of unexpected events that interrupt the normal operation of business. Managers typically develop several alternate plans to minimize the business impact of unexpected events. The problem for decision makers is that comparative evaluation of BCP is typically done using subjective judgments.

This research uses a case study approach focusing on a single organization and a single business continuity application to propose the use of computer simulation as a tool for managers to identify and evaluate different BCP prior to committing resources. In the context of an insurance firm, a specific plan was evaluated using simulation methods. A simulation model was used to model the operational aspects of the call center in an insurance company. After the model was validated, it was used to answer questions about what-if scenarios.

Results suggest that scenario analysis using simulated model enables managers to ask useful questions that can help evaluate the plan. Managers at the insurance company used the simulation model to determine the level of service required and evaluate business continuity strategies to achieve it.

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