Walled off: builder cements deal to keep its data safe

15 July 2019

Now the UK’s biggest housebuilder, the story of Barratt Developments began in 1953. Sir Lawrie Barratt, then a young accountant, could not afford to buy the house he wanted so he designed and helped to build one himself, including digging the footings and mixing the concrete.

With four bedrooms, it cost £1,750 and the experience prompted him to go into commercial house building in 1958.

Sir Lawrie died in December 2012, aged 85.

Barratt Developments now builds nearly 17,600 homes a year (2018) – ranging from one-bedroom flats to houses with six bedrooms – and has more than 6,000 employees.

With the introduction of the GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) by the EU, Barratt Developments sought a product that would ensure compliance.

The company’s group IT director, Gareth Braithwaite, said: “It was clear that our manual efforts to achieve GDPR compliance were not only resource-intensive, but also susceptible to spreadsheet error.”

Following a demonstration, Barratt chose the GDPR product by SureCloud, a UK firm founded in 2006, which is delivered from the company’s cloud-based GRC (governance, risk and compliance) platform.

Braithwaite said: “This allows us the single point of control that we require to enable efficient and effective management of our GDPR obligations. “Previously we used several systems in addition to spreadsheets, with duplicate information across all of them. We wanted to collate this into a single platform for greater efficiency, which we’ve now been able to achieve,”

Following this, Barratt added three more applications from SureCloud to simplify its compliance obligations: the Information Security Management System (ISMS) Suite; Third-Party Risk Management; and Audit Management.

They are also accessed from SureCloud’s cloud-based platform.

ISMS Suite is said to enable Barratt to strengthen its security policies and procedures, while Third-Party Risk Management is designed to assess data security risks across Barratt’s key third party data partners.

And Audit Management is said to allow Barratt to plan, manage and track its audit requirements and obligations.