The Genesis of Resiliency – Business Functions (Part 6 of 9)

This is the sixth part of a 9-part series on 9-key strategic business areas that are vital for the continuity of services and operations.


Digitizing back-end operations is as important as digitizing front-end interactions between your organization and its customers. In this article, we will explore the digitization process and offer a way for organizations of any size to examine ways to digitize their operations.

Assessing Digital Readiness

Now – more than ever – an understanding of digital resiliency is crucial when assessing an organization’s technology readiness. As we have seen during the COVID-19 pandemic, when traditional brick-and-mortar workplaces became unavailable, organizations adapted and transformed customer interactions into a virtual (i.e., digital) environment. But what about the digitization of a company’s internal operational processes? How does an organization reach the point of understanding what they need to digitize, why they need to, how much will it cost, when to do it, and how to secure it?

Assessing what to transform can be a daunting task for any organization or business. In their article “How shared-services organizations can prepare for a digital future”, McKinsey suggests that leaders should ask themselves questions relating to their current and desired states of operation, including:

  • How real are digital threats and opportunities in the eyes of the parent organization?

  • How would the shift to a digital model reshape the core value proposition of the shared-services organization?

  • How can the organization simultaneously operate at three speeds - traditional, transformative, and disruptive?

Thinking through the answers to these questions can help business leaders build the case for digital transformation and can support longer-term strategies, planning, and resource decisions.

For many organizations, the answers to these questions come through input from business functions such as Human Resources, Finance, Technology, But what about companies that have just 1 or 2 people running….everything? How can organizations that do not have the financial means to obtain professional services understand what they need to digitize or improve their internal processes and avoid being left behind as the world changes.

Using Agile for Business Function Transformation

To support your organization in its transformational journey, you can apply our Genesis Resiliency Agile User Stories method – which is unique in our industry - to a specific tabletop scenario that is relevant to you and your organization. The scenario you build can be as realistic or farfetched as you want – but it must prompt your organization to think, ideate and transform to meet the needs of all your stakeholders.

Below are examples of scenarios. For the full guide, download our "A Guide to Conducting an Agile User Story Tabletop Exercise".

Scenario Examples

Your business

You are a not-for-profit that plants tree seeds. You are dependent on volunteers and recently launched an application where anyone can buy tree seeds and select pre-defined global locations identifying where they want the seeds planted. The user also has the option to purchase physical framed certificates as a gift.


Consider the following scenarios on transforming your business functions:

1. Your certificate manufacturing company has or will be going out of business.

2. Your volunteers are working remotely and cannot support on-site visits.

3. Your designated land provider refuses to accept the terms and conditions of a long-term contract to use their land to plant trees.

Consider the perspective of one of your users – Volunteers

The expected benefit for volunteers the joy they feel by contributing to a valuable cause and they want structure in being informed of the tasks they need to do.

Complete the process of Agile user story writing to develop outputs

This story writing process will help identify blind spots in your continuity planning process and document corresponding strategies (i.e., outputs) that mitigate the risk to your user.

These outputs could be examples of what can be ideated in our Agile user story writing process using the perspective of your volunteers:

  • Implement collaborative technology to develop scheduling, knowledge center resources and daily task assignment to volunteers.

  • Integrate Health & Safety protocols for volunteers to support on-site visits if required.

  • Work with government agencies or identify private landowners to support long-term land usage contracts.

The Genesis Resiliency method of Agile user stories strengthens understanding of business functions. Additionally, through the conversations and resulting outputs (or strategies) our method generates, your business continuity planning process is being continually improved, safeguarding your interests and those of our local, regional & global communities.

Author: Martin Gierczak, Founder - Genesis Resiliency