written by Mark Veldhoff posted on Sep 22, 2020
If there’s one thing 2020 has taught us so far, it’s the importance of being prepared for disaster. The ability to quickly access critical applications and recover after a weather emergency has been a basic premise of all disaster planning and the business continuity programs that have followed.
Enter 2020 and new elements of disaster come to mind. Few companies were prepared for a global pandemic that would send hundreds of thousands of workers to home offices practically overnight.
CIO.com explains, “IT organizations, especially those that were a bit too lax about resiliency and business continuity, had a rude awakening in the face of COVID-19 as they scrambled to deliver a rapid-response remote work plan.”
One silver lining of the crisis will be a renewed focus on appropriate disaster recovery/business continuity (DR/BC) plans. The question will be where to invest in these plans and how to make your budget dollars count.
If you’re starting the process now, here are a few tips to help you be as cost-conscious as possible.
Audit and Organize
The first task before beginning to refresh your company’s DR/BC plan is to remove unneeded assets and resources. Not only should you catalog your hardware assets, but also retire and destroy anything that is no longer needed.
The same goes for idle data, which costs money to store and may take up room on servers. Keep in mind that you probably only need the latest copy of your data and your mission-critical line of business apps to be consistently updated and backed up.
Correctly sizing your environment will make your disaster recovery dollars count and will protect the most important assets at your business.
Optimize and Virtualize
Automating data replication is one way to minimize DR/BC cost, along with automating system deployment and the host of application failover. Optimizing data will reduce the required amount of storage and bandwidth needed to replicate in a DR environment.
Virtualization of servers and the DR site will also make budget dollars stretch while producing the added benefit of making DR testing easier.
It’s important to remember that IT resiliency is not an all-or-nothing game, DR/BC plans are often built from continuous improvements over time. Any progress toward optimization and virtualization is worthwhile.
Consider Disaster Recovery as a Service
The market for disaster recovery as a service (DRaaS) has exploded over the past few years. In 2020, the market for DRaaS is ballooning to $7 billion just for cloud providers. These providers are expected to continue dominating the DRaaS market as it grows.
Cloud-based DRaaS may remove the need to rely on in-house assets and personnel, providing more agile environments and big savings overall. The cost of building a separate DR site and equipping it with servers and storage will be eliminated and the need for manpower to run an in-house site will be reduced.
Document Every Detail
Documentation is the key to successful DR/BC planning. Your plan should include every detail in writing, in order to minimize the impact of disruption when it occurs.
Documenting the plan will ensure that it serves its purpose: to save productivity, reduce panic and keep your staff functioning.
Think of DR/BC as an insurance policy. Your plan should be comprehensive and familiar, including every detail of how to quickly and successfully execute when needed. Plans should be reviewed at least annually and asking an expert for help is a valuable endeavor.
Companies in Western Michigan can schedule a quick and painless review of the entire IT infrastructure and processes with the experts at Envizion IT.
Envizion IT is an IT solutions company based in Zeeland, MI, that uses a lean approach to technology, reducing customer costs while continually improving IT systems and the environment. Call us at (616) 741-1144 or chat with us online anytime to schedule your complimentary initial consultation.
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