Disaster Recovery/Business Continuity (DR/BC) is more than just backing up your data. It is about having a plan (and the technology in place to support that plan) which will enable your business to continue to function in the event of a disaster.
Whether it’s a power failure, flooded office, or global pandemic, if you already have a plan in place it’s significantly easier to respond and keep your business running
The key to successful disaster recovery is the DR plan. Put together in advance, this plan should outline who should be contacted and what actions should be taken in the event of a disaster. It’s not possible to plan for all eventualities, but many scenarios will have the same effect on your business and can be responded to in the same way.
Ultimately the plan will need to identify key assets within the business and plan for their unavailability. In some situation you will have multiple plans depending on the predicted duration of the event.
Different types of business will have different assets on which they depend. If you are a farmer you are likely dependent on your tractor for most of the work you do, where as for an accountant the computer systems are key. For most SMEs there are 3 key assets without which the operation of the business will be significantly compromised.
There are all kinds of disaster which could leave your premises uninhabitable (flood, fire, subsidence etc).
If you are in manufacturing or retail it may be extremely difficult to carry on business without your premises, however some creative thinking may allow you to continue a section of your business.
Computer systems can fail for many reasons, or they could be perfectly functional but inaccessible because you can’t access your premises.
Cloud based solutions can offer a lot of resiliency, but you still need a plan for if they become unavailable.
Losing a key member of staff to sickness can affect any business, but imagine losing all your key staff at the same time. It sounds unlikely, but any team which works closely together is going to come into contact with the same things – it could be food poisoning from a leaving do they all attended, or a nasty bug going around the office.
For each asset you need to consider they way in which it could be partially or total taken out of commission and then come up with a plan for how to continue doing business without it. In some cases you may not be able to achieve your normal levels of productivity, in which case you should consider which are the essential aspects of your business and which can allowed to slip for a time.