Disaster Recovery Planning – What to Watch For

Disaster recovery for any firm requires extensive logistical and resource planning. Every company is unique in the manner in which it operates. Therefore, every disaster recovery plan has to be tailored to fit a company’s exact needs. Almost every company stores some information digitally on servers and network attached hard drives. The migration to digital data storage has undoubtedly made things a lot easier. However, it has also exposed companies to certain risks and threats.

Data Backup Plans
Digital information can be compromised or lost due to theft, as well as from physical damage. It is a fact that natural disasters can and do occur. Natural disasters can cripple national power grids, causing power failure. They often also cause physical damage to buildings. Both situations can lead to data and monetary losses for firms.
The most effective way for a company to protect itself is to have a disaster recovery plan. Companies tend to hire external firms to help them plan out protocols for disaster recovery. Some enterprises formulate their own protocols, which might include partnering with a data center.

Pitfalls to Avoid
Whether a company hires an external firm or creates a disaster recovery plan by themselves does not matter. There are certain factors that have to be kept in mind in either case. There are numerous pitfalls that companies can face during disaster recovery planning if they are not careful.
The first thing that companies forget to do is frequently test their disaster recovery plan. Firms evolve over time, and a disaster recovery plan should also adapt to such changes. Also, disaster recovery planning entails strict protocols that have to be initiated instantly upon the time of a disaster. A company has to ensure an instantaneous response to a disaster. Therefore, it is imperative that recovery plans should be regularly tested.

A firm should update and test its plan at least yearly; ideally, an enterprise should conduct a test every six months. Moreover, testing a disaster recovery plan regularly helps company managers understand the time it will take to get operations back online. A recovery plan takes time to complete successfully. Therefore, it is important to figure out how long it will take for a company to recovery fully.

A second pitfall is not planning for full recovery with a plan. A disaster recovery plan should exactly replicate the current situation of a company. Once implemented it should not just provide temporary solutions. It must provide all protocols to bring a company back to 100% function. This is especially true in regards to hardware requirements. For instance, a company might be running its operations using 10 servers. However, its data backup plan might only be to run eight servers. Something will not be able to run as needed due to the missing pair of servers. As is true for most things, the devil is in the details. Therefore, it is important to lay out a plan that caters to each and every requirement of a business’ operations.
Finally, numerous companies do not plan for every scenario. A disaster is unpredictable, and it can have any numbers of effects on a company.The best disaster recovery plan is one that to attempt to anticipate all possible impacts from all possible scenarios.
Consequently, every company invests a significant amount of money in disaster planning, no matter how it performs it. However, when a disaster occurs, the plan will more than pay for itself in loss prevention and preparation.

Author’s bio: David is an IT professional and technology freak. He works as a software developer in a company which boasts of providing the best disaster recovery plan.

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