The foundation of any successful business continuity and data recovery solution is the ability to retrieve data from any point in time from anywhere. When the topic of data recovery and business continuity comes up, you get the feeling that many decision makers at smaller businesses and organizations wish they could channel their inner six year old, simply cover their ears, and sing “La, la, la. I Can’t Hear You. I’m Not Listening.”
Everybody thinks bad things only happen to other people. Just because we hear about a fatal car accident on the morning news, doesn’t mean we fixate on that news when we ourselves get into a car and drive to work. When it comes to protecting your company against potential disasters, there are certain things that you need to consider. One of these is ensuring that you have a good backup system in place. When you do this, you will be able to recover quickly if you experience any kind of disruption.
If you don’t have a data recovery system or business continuity plan in place, you can lose a lot of money. For example, if you use a cloud-based service for your email, then you might not be able to access your emails during a natural disaster. If this happens, you will be forced to pay for services to restore them.
So no matter how many times the owner or executive of a small to midsize business (SMB) hears of other small businesses being crippled by hurricanes, tornadoes, fires, or flooding, they aren’t necessarily overcome with fear to the point that they feel an urgency to take action. Sure, they may think about backup and data recovery solutions a little more that day, but not enough to initiate immediate change or reverse a lenient approach to their processes.
What Is Business Continuity
Continuous operations are essential to any company’s success. Business continuity planning (BCP) ensures that your organization can continue its normal functions when faced with a disaster. A BCP includes everything from emergency response plans to data backups and data recovery. Without these systems in place, an incident could cause serious damage to the company.
If you’re interested in learning more about how continuous operations work, then you should check out this article. This guide will help you understand the basics of the concept.
In order to have successful BCP, you need to start by defining what you mean by “business.” You must also identify all of the key elements of your operation. Once you’ve done that, it’s time to write down your plan. You’ll want to include information such as who is responsible for each task and what resources are needed. The most important thing is to make sure that you address every possible scenario for data loss and recovery. If you don’t cover every possibility, then you won’t be prepared for the worst case scenario.
Finally, test out your plan. Ask yourself questions about whether or not it works. Make changes to improve the process if necessary.
8 Things to Consider with Business Continuity & Data Recovery
- Malware – It isn’t natural disasters or catastrophic losses like fires that take down small businesses but something far more sinister – malware. Cyber attacks through malware have grown exponentially in the past four years. Malware is hitting everything from PCs to Macs to mobile devices and it’s inflicting damage.
- Zero Productivity – When business continuity is affected, that means you have zero-productivity, leading to a major loss. This threatens not just daily profit-margin but also employee productivity.
- Disruptions – Over half of the small businesses in the U.S. have experienced disruptions in day-to-day business operations. 81% of these incidents have led to downtime that has lasted anywhere from one to three days.
- Lack of Planning – According to data compiled by the Hughes Marketing Group, 90% of companies employing less than 100 people spend fewer than eight hours a month on their business continuity plan or data recovery plan.
- Major Disaster – 80% of businesses that have experienced a major disaster are out of business within three years. Meanwhile, 40% of businesses impacted by critical IT failure cease operations within one year. 44% of businesses ravaged by a fire fail to ever reopen, and only 33% of those that do reopen survive any longer than three years.
- Internal Causes – Disaster recovery solution providers estimate that 60% to 70% of all business disruptions originate internally – most likely due to hardware or software failure or human error.
- Bankruptcy – 93% of businesses unable to access their data center for ten or more days filed for bankruptcy within twelve months of the incident.
- Data Failure – In the United States alone, there are over 140,000 hard drive crashes each week.
- Recovery Testing – 34% of SMBs never test their backup and recovery solutions – of those who do, over 75% found holes and failures in their strategies.
Business Continuity & Data Recovery Conclusion
It’s critical that small businesses review their backup and disaster recovery processes and take business continuity seriously. When you have data loss problems, you need to know how to respond to the situation and quickly move onto recovering your data and files. If you don’t, you can expect major disruptions and loss of revenue just to name a few issues. Given the vulnerabilities associated with the cloud and workforce mobility, the risk of critical data loss today is quite serious and firms must be truly prepared for the unexpected.