When disaster strikes, the first thing we should be worried about is the well-being of our loved ones and the people around us. In the moment, there isn’t always time to be concerned about our business and the bottom line. That is why it is so vital to plan ahead to protect the continuity of your company. Making sure you don’t close your doors and go out of business protects your employee’s livelihood, and once the danger passes from whatever incident has occurred, they will be happy their jobs are still secure.
Disaster Can Come From Many Directions
There are a multitude of hazards and natural disasters that can negatively impact your business. There are tornados, hurricanes, earthquakes, fires, floods, blizzards, targeted cyberattacks, and even more. It is impossible to predict when all of these might take place or how severe the consequences could be. This is why when we talk about a backup disaster recovery plan, we create a plan that can adapt to different circumstances and solutions that apply to multiple scenarios.
When Was The Last Time You Updated Your Plan?
You might be thinking that you already have a disaster recovery plan in place. You created it years ago, and all the preparations are secure. The hard truth is that planning for bouncing back from a disaster requires routine upkeep and continual testing. The world is always changing, and there are new technologies to take advantage of every day. If your plan is not up-to-date, you could be missing out new tech or services that could make it much easier to recover.
The threats we face are also always growing and changing. Your old backup services could be obsolete and ineffectual against the next upcoming incident. It is crucial that you know the difference between a business continuity plan and a disaster recovery strategy as well. Business continuity is more focused on the future of your company and how you can ensure your operations continue for years to come. Disaster recovery is about the immediate response to crises and incidents as they arise.
A Guide To Disaster Recovery Preparations
There are many steps to building an effective disaster recovery strategy. We are providing this checklist on the broad strokes of building your own plans and strategies.
Assess Your Situation
Perform a business impact analysis (BIA) of the most likely disasters to strike your company and how your mission-critical functions will respond to them.
Establish recovery time objectives (RTO) of how long it should take to get the functions of your business up and running again.
People need to know who to look towards for direction in an emergency. Create a list of key personnel who will take charge during a disaster.
- Who will make decisions on relocation?
- Who will monitor the impact on your budget?
- What tasks are most essential to perform first?
Put Your Team Members First
In the case of disasters or incidents that risk bodily harm to your customers or employees, the first priority is their safety.
- How you reach urgent medical care?
- What emergency supplies do you have?
You’ll need more than a first-aid kit to maintain the well-being of your people.
Look At Backup Locations
We’re not saying you need to invest in a secondary location, but you should have some idea of where people could work if your current location is damaged or inaccessible.
- Can your people work remotely or from home on a short-term basis?
- Look into rental space that is able to accommodate your needs quickly.
Figure Out Your Equipment Needs
Let’s say you’ve lost your current location and have no access to everything inside. You’re running a skeleton crew and running mission-critical operations.
- How many computers will you need?
- What other equipment will you need?
- Where will you get it?
Backup Your Data
Every company needs to have a solution in place for their own data backups. Data loss can be impossible to come back from, you can’t just replace it like a computer.
Your backup solution could be off-site drives or a cloud-connected data center.
You need to know where your data backups are, and the amount of time it will take to restore them.
Make Communication A Priority
Be sure that you and your employees have access to emergency service contact information.
Set up a plan for communicating your own workforce whether they are on or off-site.
- What devices will you need?
- What if cell-phones are not working and the internet is down?
Reevaluate Your Plans Regularly
Being prepared is a work in progress. Your job is never truly done in this area.
Make sure that your plans are not out of date and update anything that has become obsolete.
You don’t want to find out some crucial piece no longer works at the moment you need it most.
To get the most step-by-step advice and assistance, reach out to Be Structured today. We are prepared to be your partner in securing the operations of your business and making sure your IT is ready to respond.