Everyone knows they should have a disaster recovery plan for their business. Yet, it often gets shunted to the bottom of the To Do list.
There are many reasons for this, but one underlying factor is that organizations tend to miscalculate the risk. There are two parts to this: underestimating the likelihood that a significant IT outage or disruption may occur, and then failing to fully consider the real price tag when they do happen.
Disasters Big and Small
First, let’s dispel a misconception about the word “disaster”. A comprehensive DR plan ensures you’re ready for just about anything, including the worst-case scenarios. But the value of a DR plan is not realized only should a true “disaster” occur, like a destructive storm or fire. Instead, you should consider any downtime or significant data loss as a disaster to your business, regardless of the cause.
When you think of disaster in that context, it’s more common than you may realize. According to one survey, in the previous 12 months:
- More than a third of organizations lost one or more critical applications, virtual machines or critical data files for hours at a time
- Nearly one in five companies lost one or more critical applications over a period of days
- One in four respondents said that they had lost most or all of a data center for hours or in some cases, days
Once you accept that “disastrous” data losses do happen and come in many forms, you have to think about what it takes to recover.
The Clock is Ticking
A critical variable to consider is how long will downtime last? Frankly, it’s hard to know unless you have a complete DR plan in place and have tested how to restore certain IT systems.
Regardless, you certainly can’t expect to get things fixed in minutes or even hours if you’re not prepared for a disaster. When you don’t have proper backup services, finding ways to get back on your feet after a wide-scale outage could literally take weeks.
Time is Money
So what’s the bottom line of a downtime? In the Disaster Recovery Preparedness Benchmark Survey, the cost of outages added up to more than $50,000 in losses, on average, with bigger companies citing losses up to $5 million.
It’s these kind of eye-popping figures that bring companies down without any hope of recovery. It doesn’t matter what size your company is, downtime is clearly the enemy you want to avoid.
A Simple Solution
Like most things in business, DR planning comes down to those precious resources, time and money.
That’s why a lot companies turn to an outside backup services provider that incorporates disaster recovery planning. With 24/7 monitoring, backups are checked and verified to make sure data can be restored when you need it. In most cases, providers can restore entire servers and application data into a private cloud for quick access anywhere you can get an Internet connection.
If you don’t have a comprehensive, tested disaster recovery plan in place, it’s time to realistically evaluate just how long your company could afford to be down during a disaster.
Need some help? Please get in touch — we can help you assess your level of preparedness and the risks you face.