A Solid Disaster Recovery Strategy Can Save Your Business
Not all businesses will look at disaster recovery the same way, but if you want your business to have the kind of continuity that will allow it to get through tough situations, doing your best to formally create a disaster recovery policy will put you in the position to weather any storm you encounter.
A Brief Explanation of Disaster Recovery
Every business has some type of business continuity plan, and if they don’t, they should. It outlines the actions that need to be taken to ensure that your business isn’t mortally affected by negative situations. Within this plan is disaster recovery, which is a specific plan to get your operations up and running after a “disaster”. Here are a few examples of disasters that could affect your business’ continuity:
● Natural disaster - Flood, hurricane, tornado, wildfire, electrical storm, worldwide pandemic; the list goes on and on.
● Human error - Accidental, negligent, or deliberate situation an employee puts the business in which causes a disaster-like result.
● Cyberattack - Data breaches can be some of the worst, especially when people’s sensitive information is involved.
● Failing Hardware - If the right component goes out at the right time it can have devastating effects on your business.
No matter what problems your business has to deal with, getting your resources back up and running as fast as possible should be one of the core priorities of any negative situation. The reality of the situation is that every minute your business breaks continuity is a massive problem, and can lead to some very unpleasant results.
The Importance of DR
The first thing you need to know about your disaster recovery policy, is that it has to be created with the notion that it’s a matter of when, not if, you will need to use it. The statistics reinforce this idea. Three-out-of-five businesses that experience a prolonged system outage will be out of business within two years of the event. So, even if you are able to get back up and running again, the lost revenue may eventually catch up and ruin your business.
With that knowledge, the first suggestion we’d make is to stay calm. A business owner—who has toiled and taken his/her business from a one or two-man operation to an organization that people and their families depend on—needs to make calculated decisions to get their business back up and running properly. Acting impulsively will often lead to making decisions that will further hurt your business’ chances of returning to normalcy.
The first real action that needs to be undertaken is to contact the people that will need to know that a disaster has occurred. Setting up a call list to notify people that need to know is a good practice. Since the focus has to be on getting data accessible, once department managers are notified, they can decide how and when to notify their subordinates. Regardless of how you plan to set this up, communication will be key to get your business back up and on track.
One of the most important parts of a disaster recovery strategy is to have digital copies of everything. We suggest using a Backup and Disaster Recovery (BDR) service that backs up data incrementally and saves multiple copies of data in a network-connected device, as well as in an offsite data center. Having a comprehensive backup is a core strategy of any disaster recovery platform.
Depending on the disaster, you may need to find alternative means of managing your workforce. Being able to provide your staff with that ability in the face of a disaster is extremely useful to keep revenue flowing in. You may not be a fan of remote working, but when disaster strikes it may be your only outlet; and, you may be surprised just how productive your workers will be from outside the office.
The end result will be systems up and running, your data and applications able to be accessed by remote workers, and your business’ data intact. Outside of this, your business continuity policy will handle the rest. DR is about getting your business’ assets up and running in the face of a disaster, whether that is a deleted file or a worldwide pandemic.
If you would like to talk to one of our IT professionals about your disaster recovery policy, call us today at 334-834-7660.
Backup Can Really Save Your Business’ Bacon
The question this article will present is simple: Does your business have a dedicated data backup and disaster recovery system? A comprehensive backup and disaster recovery platform (BDR) can turn out to be one of the most critical parts of managing a business’ IT infrastructure, and if you don’t have one, you should absolutely get one.
With a BDR, you get the convenience of having a network attached copy of your data coupled with the redundancy you need to ensure that your data is protected. Best yet, the BDR can run automatically at preset intervals so that your company doesn’t risk losing more than 15 minutes’ worth of data. Furthermore, BDR uses the cloud to perform data backups, which provides a significantly better system for getting back in the game following a critical loss incident. The cloud allows for faster restoration times, less downtime, and more complete data backups. The cloud utilizes snapshot-based data backup, which only updates the current backup if the files have been changed, making it truly the best way to go about protecting your organization from unforeseen threats.
For those businesses that currently operate without a data backup and recovery strategy--especially if you’ve been in business for some time--you may think that it’s just another cost that you are taking on that will hurt your business’ ability to turn a profit. You may not think you have enough data that you think is important enough to warrant additional investment in protecting it. You are probably mistaken, however. You have important data, and if you lose it, you stand to lose your business. In fact, 94 percent of businesses that fall victim to a major data loss incident fail within two years of the incident. If you consider six percent of all computers will fail in any given year, it stands to reason that it’s only a matter of time before you are dealing with a data loss catastrophe.
Keep your business out of harm’s way with a backup and disaster recovery strategy. Call Jackson Thornton Technologies today at 334-834-7660 to learn more.
The Basics of Business Continuity Planning
Situations happen all the time to businesses that can really put a lot of stress on their ability to sustain operations. These situations don’t often remediate themselves. Simply put, every business needs a business continuity plan; and one-in-five don’t have one. This month, we thought we would break down a successful plan into its components to try to give businesses that may not have a plan, the basics needed to establish one.
Variables of a Successful Continuity Plan
Using what is called a threat matrix, you should work to Identify all the threats that could railroad your business. You will want to include any situation that could cause your business to stop. Examples can be as simple as a power outage to major calamities like a tornado ripping your building apart. Your business’ threat matrix should list threats (from most to least likely) and what your response would be to each.
Each business has mission-critical processes that need to be working fluidly in order to do business as usual. These should all be found in a comprehensive continuity plan.
Chain of Command
Every business has a leader, management, and subordinates. Knowing who oversees what is crucial when looking to get your business back up and running after an event that knocks continuity out.
Evacuation Plan for Employee Safety
Your business’ continuity plan should outline a strategy to safely get your people out of harm’s way should some disaster strike your business.
If continuity is broken, people need to know about it. There should be a point of contact for every department on your staff, so that they can contact employees, vendors, and customers if the need arises.
Clearly, you’ll need your data if you want your business to continue after an event. Having a disaster recovery plan that includes comprehensive data backup is a major part of getting your technology up and running, should something happen to your business’ information systems.
Inventory of Your IT Infrastructure
Concordantly, if a situation arises where your IT is knocked out, having an inventory of everything that you have can also be used to procure resources should you need to rebuild.
When Is It Over?
You will want to have a process in place that signals the end of an incident, and that all “I”s are dotted and “T”s are crossed. This will allow managers and employees to know that they can get back to business without worrying about residual negative circumstances.
There are no guarantees that the breach of your business’ continuity will have a happy ending. What is true is that with a dedicated plan in place, you will have a fighting chance. If you need help putting together the technology resources to support your disaster recovery initiatives, or if you would just like to discuss business continuity with one of our experts, give us a call at 334-834-7660.