Your business relies on documentation, applications, and existing databases to run every day. What happens when you lose access to these things? If you don’t have a disaster recovery plan in place, you could find yourself out of business or facing substantial losses.
You wouldn’t buy a car without buying insurance; why would you have a business without a plan? There’s no room for error with your infrastructure; if something goes wrong, you want an organization in place that can recover your systems quickly. So what does this all mean? It means you should consider creating a strategic disaster recovery plan for your own infrastructure.
What Is A Strategic Disaster Recovery Plan?
A Strategic DR plan is different from a traditional disaster recovery plan. Traditional DR plans focus on how you will restore data from backups after a disaster occurs. However, there are many other issues to consider before deciding about your servers – including who will be responsible for managing them, where those servers are located, whether they’re being controlled by another team, etc. These are called non-technical concerns, and they’re just as important as technical ones.
To take advantage of the benefits of DR, you must first assess what risks you face and then determine a best practice solution that addresses each risk. This requires you to define your environment and understand the capabilities of the technology you use. The end goal of this process is to create a detailed plan that provides direction and guidance for your future operations. You’ll also need to identify the most critical aspects of your infrastructure and develop strategies to address those issues. For example, you may consider:
How often do you back up data? Do you keep multiple copies of your backups? Are both local and remote copies of the duplicate backups available? Where does data reside on the network? Do you store it in one location? How far away is that storage device? Who manages the server containing your data? Who will manage backup jobs? How frequently? Is your system in a secure location? Are you storing sensitive information?
You can begin defining your ideal DR solutions when you’ve answered these questions.
How Does Your Company Handle Data Loss?
Most businesses rely heavily on their computers, databases, software, and networks to operate. As such, they typically fall into one of two categories: Those who depend on their technology much more than they rely on themselves and those whose lives revolve around it.
For businesses that depend on their technology to survive, downtime can mean losing money and customers and even jeopardizing their ability to continue operating entirely. While some companies choose to invest in high-end data centres designed to withstand natural disasters and human errors, most opt for cost-effective solutions that reduce the impact on their bottom line.
In either case, businesses must recognize the importance of having a reliable disaster recovery plan in place.
Why do I need a disaster recovery plan for my business?
Put another way, no matter what type of error or trouble plagues your data, your business’s information will remain safe, thus protecting you against the several problems outlined below:
A Server Failure
When a server fails, it could cause damage to your data. Many companies don’t realize just how valuable their data is until it’s gone – and then suddenly, they’re faced with months or years of lost productivity while they recover. Depending on how important your business is to you, the consequences of losing access to your own records could be devastating.
An External Event
Some of these events can cause physical damage to your property and/or your equipment, whether it’s an external event. And if that happens at night or during an off-peak period when fewer people are using your services, chances are it won’t affect you as severely as it would during busier hours or peak periods. But even if your servers aren’t physically damaged, they can still fail due to cyber-attacks or malware. In this case, backups may not be able to save the day.
Even the best computer systems can malfunction from time to time. While hardware failures often require costly repairs and replacements, humans make mistakes too. People forget passwords, copy files without permission, lose track of work projects, leave laptops unattended, or simply click “send” before finishing a thought. These mistakes can lead to lost data or missing applications that could threaten the ongoing viability of your organization.
Businesses need fast access to information, especially if they’re facing competition. The moment customers discover new ways to use your products, they’ll want to take advantage of them right away. That means you’ll need to update your software and bring online any changes you made last week. So unless you have a separate team dedicated to managing updates, you’ll need to keep users informed of upcoming changes by releasing periodic updates.
Loss of Customers
One of the worst things about running a business is having to tell clients that there’s been a problem with their orders. Customer support agents can also experience outages themselves, affecting your ability to answer questions and fix issues. A client might stop doing business with you entirely if their service goes down, which could result in lost revenue.
It may seem like something out of a movie plot, but employee theft is one of the top reasons data backups go awry. Data thieves may steal your hard drives, destroy your servers, or infiltrate your network through other methods. As a result, you might find you’ve been hit with fines, lawsuits, or even criminal charges after your business suffers a breach.
So whatever kind of problem it is, there’s always a chance that it could happen to you. This leads us to the following question:
What do I do now?
If you’ve already implemented a disaster recovery plan, great! But remember, no matter how well you think you are prepared for an emergency situation, some situations are too big to anticipate. No matter what kind of scenario you were expecting, you should always have a backup plan in place.
If you haven’t yet created a disaster recovery plan, we’ll help you develop one that works for your particular needs. No two businesses are alike, so our plans are customized to meet your unique requirements. You’ll know exactly where to focus your efforts once you understand the risks involved and the potential impact those risks could have on your business.