Business Automation and Software Blog

Understanding the Need for Developing a Disaster Recovery Plan

Posted by Robert Baran on Tue, Apr 03, 2012 @ 11:37 AM

disaster-recovery-and-business-continuityIn today’s day and age, disaster recovery is more accessible, and affordable, than ever. With the emergence of new technologies and data storage capabilities, businesses should have no excuse for not developing a disaster recovery plan. However, according to a recent study, 66% of small businesses do not have business continuity and recovery plan should their main computers and servers go down. What’s even more unsettling is the fact that 70% of businesses that experience a data failure without the proper continuity plan go out of business within a year. The following new technologies are not only affordable in the area of disaster recovery, but they are also easy to incorporate into any business structure.

The emergence of on demand cloud computing has made data backup significantly more affordable and accessible than any other time. Cloud computing allows businesses to store data on remote servers that can be accessed anywhere, as long as the computer has an internet connection. This technology has allowed many storage companies to provide businesses with relatively low-cost, safe and secure, near real-time online backup and data storage. Server virtualization, in which one computer runs multiple completely different servers, is another new technology that keeps data recovery affordable. The virtual servers replicate the data and applications, making them available anywhere on the internet in the case of a system failure. Companies are able to access the servers within 24 hours time, making data recovery more efficient than ever.

Although there are many disaster recovery options available in the cloud, some companies are slow to adopt the new technology. Concerned that cloud computing is too “new” and risky, many companies opt to stick to a traditional method or no method at all. Rather than risk having no disaster recovery plan in place, these companies can turn to other disaster recovery alternatives. For those who want more control with less risk, colocation hosting services may be the solution for them. Colocation providers offer space in secure data centers where companies can set up duplicate servers running key applications. Companies can then connect to these servers with an internet connection and replicate data from their on site servers. Even companies with no IT department can take advantage of this approach by paying the provider for setup, management and maintenance services.

With the abundance of disaster recovery options available, how do you know which solution is best for your company? The decision could be based on a variety of factors and could even be a mix of solutions, especially if you have data that needs varying degrees of protection.

First, ask yourself how critical your data and applications are, how quickly you will need to access them and how much you are willing to pay for a backup solution. The next step is calculating the cost of down time. Can your business survive without access to data for 48 hours? If not, you need to be looking for a solution that offers full, near-instantaneous access to your data and applications. Are you concerned at all about the safety and security of your data in the cloud? Then you should be looking at in-house server solutions. Look at all of your options and choose your solution based upon your data needs. Remember, your back-up plan does not need to be elaborate. As long as the crucial data and applications are protected by some sort of disaster recovery plan, your business will come out flourishing.

Topics: Disaster Recovery