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WASHINGTON – CUNA, a new member of BITS, an IT group consisting of industry representatives that is working on developing standards for doing business online, recently submitted a comment letter about BITS’ draft entitled Framework for Managing Information Technology Service Provider Relationships. CUNA suggested a number of changes to the draft, including the following: * Addressing the integration of the request for proposal and due diligence process with financial institutions’ business continuity planning, * Providing more detail regarding defining an exit strategy and specifics about the role of technology service providers and receiver financials, * Addressing how service levels can be set effectively for new channels and complex service relationships, * Expanding to include the concept of performance level plans to identify processes and timeline required to get system/service into production. CUNA also agreed with the importance of annual reviews of third-party outsourcing agreements, but said it would be “overly prescriptive to advise the establishment of a steering committee to perform this function.” The BITS’ Framework can be especially valuable to the credit union industry, given that CUs are big believers in partnering with best-of-breed third-party firms for tech services.

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