Resilient Business Continuity

DATAMARK India’s Resilient Response to Cyclonic Storm Michaung

When Cyclonic Storm Michaung struck in December 2023, DATAMARK India faced a significant challenge. However, through strategic planning and decisive action, they successfully weathered the storm, ensuring uninterrupted operations and maintaining client satisfaction. Leveraging innovative solutions and fostering seamless collaboration, they upheld operational continuity and client commitments.

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In December 2023, DATAMARK India faced an unprecedented challenge as Severe Cyclonic Storm Michaung Swept across Chennai. This case study explores how DATAMARK India successfully implemented a Disaster Recovery (DR) and Business Continuity Planning (BCP) plan. Their strategic planning and coordinated efforts, ensuring operational resilience and uninterrupted client services.

Understanding the Situation

Severe Cyclonic Storm Michaung, originated in the Bay of Bengal. It struck the eastern coast of India with sustained winds of 110 km/h, leading to extensive rainfall and disruptions. Public transportation, power supply, internet connectivity, and essential services were severely impacted, posing significant challenges to Datamark India’s operations.

Upon observing the escalating weather conditions on December 3rd, Datamark India swiftly initiated a BCP call group. They notified all managers through various communication channels. The team anticipated potential power disruptions and organized a DR/BCP recovery call to formulate a comprehensive plan.

The Business Continuity Plan call group, a proactive approach, facilitated quick decision-making by connecting key decision-makers. Notifications through Teams chat groups, emails, and WhatsApp ensured that all managers were promptly informed. This created a sense of urgency and preparedness among the team.

Implementing DRBC Process

The team efficiently communicated with the Director, coordinated with the Mumbai site for support, and redistributed work volumes seamlessly. In terms of volume for the first day of the cyclone, Chennai handled 17.54% of the volumes and queues. Datamark’s Mumbai team supported the Chennai facility in taking 55.27% of volumes apart from their regular workflow. Within 72 hours after implementing the DRBC process, the team was up and running up to 87%. Staffing and deliverables back on track.

Transportation challenges were addressed through tempo travelers, and constant monitoring of power fluctuations ensured operational continuity. Adjustments to project tools and workflows and proactive planning for subsequent shifts showcased the team’s resilience. By the fourth day of implementing the plan, staffing and deliverables were at 95%.

After all the redistribution of work volumes, the Mumbai site played a crucial role in providing BCP support. The coordination between the Chennai and Mumbai sites ensured a seamless transfer of volumes, reflecting the importance of a geographically dispersed approach in disaster recovery planning.

Unexpected Obstacles and Solutions

Challenges such as communication breakdowns, transportation issues, safety concerns, and regulatory compliance were met with innovative solutions. Using multiple communication channels, efficient transportation arrangements, and adherence to regulatory standards demonstrated the team’s ability to overcome unexpected obstacles.

The difficulty in reaching all employees due to communication breakdowns was resolved using various mediums such as emails, text messages, phone calls, and messaging apps. Confirming the receipt of critical information ensured that everyone remained informed, showcasing the team’s adaptability in overcoming communication challenges during a crisis.

Collaboration Across Departments

Different departments collaborated seamlessly, including Operations, IT, Security, HR, Facilities, and Finance. Challenges in coordination were addressed by conducting regular cross-departmental meetings, fostering collaboration, and overcoming departmental silos.

While collaboration was pivotal, balancing varying priorities and processes across different departments initially presented a challenge. The establishment of regular Business Continuity Plan meetings involving representatives from each department facilitated a unified response by addressing concerns and aligning priorities.

Operational Resilience

Exceptional resilience was demonstrated through swift adaptation to remote work, informed decision-making, effective communication channels, interdepartmental collaboration, resource optimization, and maintaining positive morale.

The team’s ability to quickly adapt to remote work arrangements showcased agility and preparedness crucial in maintaining operational resilience. This adaptability confines itself to work processes and extends to maintaining a positive morale, contributing to a sense of unity and determination among team members.

Key lessons learned included the importance of teamwork, swift decision-making, cross-departmental coordination, maintaining client rapport, and the need for continuous improvement. Measures such as regular BCP workflow checks, detailed employee databases, and practical communication improvements would serve to identify effective strategies for for future crisis management.

Prioritizing the well-being of team members involved maintaining transparent communication, providing guidance on transportation and relocation, offering flexible work schedules, recognizing and appreciating efforts, and implementing support for those affected. 

The recognition and appreciation of team efforts during challenging times contributed to a positive emotional environment. This acknowledgment from leadership played a crucial role in boosting morale and fostering a sense of solidarity among team members.

Looking Ahead

This experience has shaped Datamark India’s risk management and crisis preparedness approach. Initiatives include comprehensive risk assessment, strengthened communication protocols, regular BCP readiness checks, employee training programs on disaster preparedness, and ongoing improvements based on insights gained from this situation.

The focus on turning challenges into opportunities and understanding the pros and cons as a leadership team highlighted Datamark India’s commitment to continuous improvement. The emphasis on creating a comprehensive risk assessment process underscored the need for a proactive and forward-looking approach to crisis management.


DATAMARK India’s successful navigation through Cyclonic Storm Michaung serves as a testament to the team’s resilience, adaptability, and commitment to client service. The lessons learned, and ongoing initiatives underscore the company’s dedication to continuous improvement and preparedness in the face of unforeseen challenges. The case study provides a comprehensive view of the strategies employed, challenges overcome, and the valuable insights gained, paving the way for a more resilient and prepared organization.



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