Have you ever lost data from your personal computer? It can be really annoying as well as time-consuming. But imagine the worry if you lose your data in a disaster, and your business does not even have a recovery plan in place.
In fact, for a business, it means huge loss and potential closure. However, if your business has a strong agenda and develops a strong I.T. disaster recovery plan, it’ll definitely see better results.
A survey conducted by Datto showed that 96 percent of small and midsize businesses with a trusted backup and disaster recovery plan were able to endure ransomware attacks.
How? Their disaster recovery plan allowed them to restore their systems without having to pay ransoms. This gives us a simple conclusion that when a tragedy happens, your disaster recovery plan can save you from any significant data or financial loss.
Building A Successful I.T. Disaster Recovery Plan
It all starts with a basic understanding. Disaster recovery is not merely a backup solution. Though backups are part of your plan, it goes beyond that. There are two essential metrics that you need to understand: your recovery time objective (RTO) and your recovery point objective (RPO).
These two tell you the amount of time it takes to restore data and the acceptable amount of time your systems can be down. The metrics form the basis of setting up a plan.
Here's a step-to-step guide for preparing your I.T. disaster recovery plan:
One: Create Inventory of your Assets
Make a list of all the tools you have and what impact they will have on your business in case they go down. Your inventory could include the servers, storage devices, applications, data, network hardware, and network appliances. You should have all the knowledge about them, including where they're, what they connect to, and which equipment is dependent on them.
Two: Identifying Your Critical Systems
Once you've a list of all your assets, you'll find out the things that your business is entirely dependent on. For example, if you've an e-commerce store, an active and working website is critical. If you're a manufacturer, CAD and CAM systems are vital to your daily operations.
With larger businesses, different business units have different critical systems. Once you identify your critical systems, decide what is essential along with your stakeholders. These are the systems you need to monitor most closely and prioritize in the event of a disaster.
Three: Define Your Metrics
Step three is about determining the RPO and RTO for your organization. It is good to set metrics for the organization as a whole. However, make sure to apply them to the individual systems. That does not mean you should not have recovery metrics for systems that are not business-critical; rather, your whole infrastructure is an important investment. But it's important to prioritize your approach and add metrics to everything.
Four: Implement the Right Tools
Research thoroughly for vendors who will run and sync your disaster recovery processes. Again, this should not be limited to a backup solution. For example, you need to look for Azure site recovery if you are using Microsoft, website recovery, data recovery, and several others. If you can automate much of the recovery process, that is great as it reduces maximum errors.
Step Five: Test
Once the implementation of the I.T. disaster recovery plan is ensured, it is time to test it out and ensure everything is running properly. Most companies feel that their disaster recovery solutions are running perfectly, only to find out that they are not able to recover data or critical systems later. This is why the test phase is extremely important to ensure your plan is put together correctly and will run in the event of a disaster.
A disaster recovery plan is crucial to your business continuity. At Keeran networks, we advise companies not to take your disaster recovery process lightly. If your current I.T. staff does not have sufficient knowledge or experience, it's only better to turn to a trusted managed services provider for help. Our team can help you through each of the steps listed above. Plus, help you with the right vendor and solutions to meet your business-specific needs.
Need to talk to disaster recovery experts? Get in touch with our team.