Before we go into the reasons for a Disaster Recovery Plan, what the heck is a Disaster Recovery Plan? Is it not simply making sure your company has adequate backups?
You could look at a DR Plan as a blueprint on how your business is pinned together, how it would be rebuild from scratch? From an IT perspective, it’s how your company data, servers, PCs, email, internet, databases, applications, VoIP Phones are all glued together.
So back to backups. You have a have backup of your company data, but what if…
- Server room was flooded?
- The office burnt down over night?
- The city suffered from a major earth quake
- Office was hit by tornado or hurricane!
More than likely your UK business won’t be affected by hurricane, extreme weather, forest fire or major earthquake. You might say that our company data is backed up offsite anyway, and you’d be right, that would certainly help, but what if the following happened…
- Your office backups and offsite backups had become corrupt by a nasty virus?
- Someone had deleted all the backups or changed a setting in which the backups appeared to be working but actually not backing up anything useful?
- The critical hardware was stolen or damaged
- Power or internet to the office was lost for a long period of time
- Power spike damaged critical equipment
- Something new was added and wasn’t included in the backup
- Physical access to the office wasn’t possible
All of the above has happen to existing and new clients that have recently come on board with us. Introducing a manual check process to check the integrity of the backups would help in a couple of cases mentioned above.
Less about backups
So if you’re backing offsite and check the integrity of backups, your next problem is what you recover to. Your IT company might say in DR situation..
- Should we go ahead and purchase a new physical server, commit to private cloud server or are you okay with a public cloud solution?
- How is everything going to connect to the internet?
- How are the users going to connect in, do they all have laptops or devices outwith the office?
- What about your phone system, printers, scanners, tablets, laptops etc
- What priority should we bring each system back, which members of staff are key?
- Do you have short and long term strategy in how the business will run?
- How do we paid the staff!
Then as mentioned earlier on, it’s the glue, the knowledge of how components of your IT systems are pinned together. Even if you still work with the original suppliers and people, will they remember or have information to piece together the bits of the jigsaw? Especially in the heat of the moment, ah the office has burnt down! Then how long is it going to put this jigsaw back together, how much effort will it need to complete the picture in timely fashion that your businesses doesn’t start to suffer?
Peace of mind
With DR Plan, an IT company will test these different scenarios and tackle these questions. They will actually recover from backups and recreate your IT system. They will hit problems, hopefully work them out, document them and make suggestions to improve current backup strategies.
Even if the first DR recovery test fails, yeah its not great, but the process has done its job, you can make changes now before your business really needs to call upon it.
Over the past 12 months, 15% of our clients have taken out an extra Disaster Recover as a Service with Dunedin IT. We’ve found that more and more companies are being asked by their insurance companies, what is your business continuity plan?
If you like to find out more about DRaaS and business continuity, contact David or Jamie on 0131 225 2215 or firstname.lastname@example.org