CASE STUDY: FNB Botswana improves IT governance


Image: Edward Carbutt. By BiztechAfrica
Edward Carbutt

First National Bank (FNB) Botswana is one of the leading financial institutions in the country and is part of the prominent First National Bank group. As a financial entity that operates across countries and continents, the company needs to comply with a multitude of regulations and governance practices both locally and internationally. In an effort to improve IT governance and align with the principles of IT, FNB Botswana called upon Marval South Africa to assist with training and ITIL process development.

Since a large proportion of FNB’s business relies on the availability of IT infrastructure and service, downtime can be costly in terms of the impact on the bank’s customers and the loss of income it incurs.

“IT Service Management is an important aspect of our business, and we are moving towards a more proactive approach when it comes to assisting our customers. In order to do this, we needed to gain an in depth understanding of the environment and everything this IT environment entails,” says Gaogakwe Mokobi, Head of the Technology Services Division at FNB Botswana.

“Our biggest challenge was the unstructured and very reactive nature of our IT environment to faults that occur. Problem resolution was slow, which ultimately ended up causing downtime and loss of productivity and income. We realised that managing this more effectively would improve efficiencies as well as profitability, so we embarked upon ITIL training. We then engaged the services of Marval South Africa to assess our environment and assist the team with development of processes in line with the best practice guidelines outlined by ITIL,” he adds. 

After an initial assessment of FNB’s environment, Marval SA recommended changes, which were implemented over the following six months. Training was conducted with key FNB staff members on ITIL Foundation, and the team from Marval worked closely with FNB to define ITIL processes specific to the banking organisation. Process owners were trained and coached on their roles and responsibilities, inputs and outputs to ensure their understanding and buy-in, and a session was held for collaboration between the process owners to enable them to share knowledge and gain a broader understanding of the new processes across the board.

“With Marval’s help we established a policy that documents and guides risk and change management within our IT department. Documenting processes is critical for audit purposes, and ITIL has been instrumental in assisting us in this regard. We have already realised the benefits of this with improved problem management and change management, and as this is an on-going project we expect to realise more benefits in the future,” Mokobi says.

By implementing the appropriate ITIL practices in line with bank processes, FNB Botswana will be not only be able to more easily comply with legislation and governance, the bank will also ensure that processes are put into place to quickly address IT faults and failures, improving turnaround time for problem resolution. They will also be able to benefit from improved efficiency and controls around risk management, continuity and continual improvement of IT service delivery.

“Skills transfer is also an important part of the coaching and IT Service Management optimisation programme. This ensures that continual service improvement can take place independently of a consultant. As a result, emphasis is placed on training and providing on-going support as changes and improvements take place,” says Edward Carbutt, Executive Director at Marval South Africa.

“As part of our scope, we helped FNB Botswana not only to adopt and implement the appropriate ITIL processes for their business, but also to do this in an ISO 200000 compliant manner. This will stand the company in good stead should they wish to achieve this formal ISO accreditation in the future,” he concludes.

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