TSB’s response to the failure of its notorious IT migration faced initial criticism from the team of specialists it called in to help, it has been revealed.
The treasury select committee of MPs, which has been investigating the fallout, has released the findings of a preliminary report for the bank compiled by IBM on 29 April.
It called into question the testing of the new servers, saying that “performance testing (of the new system) did not provide the required evidence of capacity”.
“IBM has not seen evidence of the application of a rigorous set of go-live criteria to prove production readiness,” the report stated.
Just three days later, the under-fire chief executive of TSB, Paul Pester, went before MPs to insist preparations “gave us belief that we were ready for the migration”.
TSB had called in the experts days after a weekend project to transfer 1.3 billion customer records resulted in chaos online and in branches.
Problems included digital customers being unable to access their accounts, payments failing and customers being exposed to fraudsters trying to cash in on the meltdown.
Services are yet to be functioning as they should.
The committee, which declared earlier this month that it had since lost confidence in the bank’s chief executive, said it was releasing IBM’s report alongside a statement – requested by TSB and made in agreement with IBM.
That said of IBM’s report: “It contains a preliminary work plan with very early hypotheses, produced after just three days of engagement with TSB.
“These hypotheses were not final nor were they a validated view of what went wrong or of the actions that may or may not subsequently have been taken.”
The report contained several other observations about TSB’s response – with one saying that a “high volume” of deployments aimed at stabilising services was actually making things worse for customers.
It read: “It is standard industry operating procedure during incidents of this severity to reduce change (especially functional) to the absolute minimum in order to maintain control.”