Many companies that should have a disaster recovery plan in place either do not have a plan in place, or they have an underdeveloped one. Here are a few reasons why it is important to fully develop your plan so that it helps reduce the disruption your business experiences in the event of a disaster.
What is a Disaster Recovery Plan?
Simply put, a disaster recovery plan is a set of activities aimed at minimizing the impact of a disaster on the infrastructure of critical business processes.
Most companies today cannot operate if their IT infrastructure is down. Any time a single server, rack of gear, remote office cite or data center goes down, some or all operations come to a halt. The equipment may be directly harmed by a natural disaster, or it may indirectly affected by a power outage. Either way, when IT infrastructure is down, so is revenue.
Companies directly affected by disasters are the most visible victims, but nearby companies may also suffer. A stark example of companies that suffered indirectly during a disaster is 9/11. Everyone thinks of the people who were in the World Trade Center on 9/11 and the companies that were housed in those towers, and, of course, they should be remembered. More than 200 companies within a five-block area, though, were also affected. They did not have power for weeks after the disaster.
Why do Companies Need Disaster Recovery Plans?
Without a disaster recovery plan in place, it is very difficult to recover from a disaster. Of the companies affected by Hurricane Katrina, for instance, approximately a quarter of them never recovered from the storm. Even companies that do recover after a disaster may lose market share to competitors that were able to recover quicker or were unaffected.
What Does a Disaster Recovery Plan Look Like?
A disaster recovery plan employs a tiered system, where Tier 1 contains the most mission critical processes, Tier 2 the second-most critical ones, Tier 3 the third-most and so on. By placing each process in an appropriate tier, companies can prioritize their disaster recovery plan. The most mission critical processes should be restored first; therefore, the IT infrastructure that supports Tier-1 processes is given top priority in the plan. Symantecs Net Backup helps with this process, enabling backup and recovery of Tiered processed, no matter how mission critical they are.
Investing in a Plan
Depending on the size of a company, a disaster recovery plan can save companies millions of dollars, should a disaster occur. The average disaster in the financial sector costs companies $1 million per hour. In light of these potential costs, a disaster recovery plan is a small, wise investment.