David Lewien – Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Planning ahead will ensure that unforeseen events do not derail your business.

Disaster recovery and business continuity planning ensures that a business is prepared for disruptive events – natural or human induced, major or minor.

A quick distinction between Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity…

Disaster recovery is the procedure for which an organization can recommence business following a disruptive event, which can be anything from a hurricane to a minor power outage. Disaster recovery (DR) is the process for data recovery and continuity of those elements critical to business operations.

Business continuity planning is more comprehensive. It includes disaster recovery, but also plans for other various operational challenges that a business might face. These challenges might include personnel disruptions and supply chain problems.

Regardless of the distinction, many organizations are not fully prepared for disasters.

Most businesses want to be fully functional as soon as possible after a serious disaster. After all, when business operations are at a stand still, every hour that goes by is a serious financial hit. Unfortunately, few businesses are willing to pre-invest in the infrastructure that will ensure a swift recovery. Business executives tend to be optimistic by nature, focused more on creating success than planning for the worst. This is good – but disasters do happen and can cripple a business that’s caught unprepared.

While the principal objective of a disaster recovery plan is to ensure a quick and effective recovery from an unforeseen interruption in information systems and business operations, additional objectives may include:

  • Cost-effective contingency arrangements
  • The complete understanding of key personnel duties within the DR plan
  • The understanding and adherence of operational policies
  • Planning for possible implications on other company sites
  • The mitigation of detrimental effects that disaster recovery could have on key vendors and customers

Go West IT consults with businesses to help them develop the IT portion of their Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity Plan.

We recommend the IT components necessary to achieve Disaster Recovery and Business Continuity objectives, design and implement the DR process, and help our customers set realistic expectations about withstanding a serious disaster.

For example, if a customer wants to have their entire network up and running in an off-site location within 4 hours of a catastrophic disaster, we can tell them what that would take. Most of the time, we are able to share alternative strategies with our customers for insuring that critical components are accessible even on a limited basis. Last, but not least, we help our customers regularly test their DR plan and accommodate the inevitable changes in technology and business operations.

If you would like to discuss your company’s disaster recovery plans, let us know. We are always happy to talk with you.

Contact us.