The importance of designing a data recovery plan to recover from contingencies and mishaps that lead to data loss can never be understated. Data is now both the lifeblood and a competitive advantage for most businesses, and a lack of coherent systems and infrastructure to recover from data loss have literally run many companies to the ground. However, having a data recovery plan is one thing, and having one that covers all bases is another. Make sure that the data recovery plan covers these often-overlooked details:
Provision for Supporting Infrastructure
Systems and software are critical parts of any disaster recovery plan. However, many companies make the mistake of ignoring, or taking for granted, crucial elements such as power, communication and other supporting infrastructure, which are generally needed for you plan to work. For instance, power blackouts during hurricanes can last for days on end, way beyond the capacity of your uninterruptible power supply (UPS). Similarly, a lack of an alternative communication system may result in the disaster recovery system unable to transmit data to the remote backup location once the storm wrecks the data cables.
The disaster recovery plan should factor in ways to deal with mass outrages, which could last for extended periods of time.
A disaster recovery set up may work fine when installed. In fact, it may be perfect when tested under controlled conditions. But this is no guarantee that it would still work when a hurricane strikes and floods the server room at 3 am. Any small change in the infrastructure, such as adding new hardware or a new dependency, can make the backup inoperative. It is important to test the disaster recovery plan as often as possible, and testing often offers the chance to discover what has been overlooked.
Many companies do not test the disaster recovery plan frequently, as testing consumes time and money. This is a big mistake and can diminish the entire investment incurred to set up the disaster recovery mechanism.
The knowledge of many key processes, including disaster recovery, may be confined to just the manager or key personnel, but these processes are generally passed from person to person as the company grows or positions change. The initial disaster recovery documentation may have become outdated thanks to changes in configuration, and the tweaks or changes done to keep the plans running may not have been documented. This is a problem, especially when one detail can make all of the difference.
Have a clear plan in place to update the information in your strategy, who should have access to the strategy, and what should happen if disaster strikes and the manager isn’t there.
Most companies have their hands full trying to run their core business operations without having time to look into aspects such as data recovery plans. Outsourcing these non-core, yet essential activities is a good way to still maintain this as a priority and protect your data. STORServer offers comprehensive data protection and disaster recovery solutions tailored to the company’s needs. With our backup appliances, robust software partners and expertise, we know how to implement an effective data protection plan for your business. Contact us today.