Disaster recovery planning involves developing a written plan for how a business will recover from a catastrophic event. Almost every business, regardless of size, should have a disaster recovery plan in place. Unfortunately, most businesses do not take the time to create one. This means when a catastrophic event occurs, a business is unlikely to recover. Here is a list of the first steps for getting started.
List of Duties and Jobs
The first step in creating a disaster recovery plan is listing all of the jobs associated with the business. This should include every employee and position within the company, from managers to janitors. Jobs that are considered “mission critical,” or what the company relies on in order to sustain, should be marked as important.
It is also important to lay out a set of people who are decision makers. These are the people who can approve the use of resources for recovery. In addition, leaders should be identified who can manage during disasters. These positions should always be filled, to ensure nothing falls through the cracks in the event of an emergency.
Inventory of Equipment
Each employee should have a list of necessary, essential equipment in order for them to complete their duties. These items should be broken down to the bare essentials, especially as there may be limited space after a disaster. The disaster recovery plan should include items such as computers, desks, telephones, software, etc.
The essential equipment will have supporting equipment that is required in order for it to run. For example, if a computer is needed for an employee, consider the supporting equipment behind that. Computers will require things like electricity, software, servers, internet access, backups, etc. In the disaster recovery plan, business owners should include all supporting equipment associated with the essential equipment.
When the disaster recovery plan is made, it should also conform to any requirements by insurance. Some insurance providers will provide resources for the business to relocate or purchase necessary equipment. However, this portion of the disaster recovery plan must be disclosed to the insurance company beforehand. Business owners should consider storing a backup copy of their disaster recovery plan with an insurance agent.
Data Center Partners
Companies might also look into partnering with a third-party data center for offsite recovery needs. Data centers offer IT equipment and data storage and backup services. This is often a better, more cost-effective option for disaster recovery. All aspects needed for recovery are housed and maintained by an offsite provider, and it handles all recovery aspects. In addition, the centers often provide dedicated workspace in case a workforce is displaced. This space contains all the essentials for a business to function.
Setting in Motion
Once the disaster recovery plan is complete, it needs to be finalized, reviewed and stored. Disaster recovery plans should never be stored onsite. Instead it should be stored in copy form in an offsite, safe location. After a disaster, employers should locate the copy of their disaster recovery plan and act fast. In the event of a disaster, time is limited. Therefore, the faster a company reacts and recovers, the less likely it will be that the business remains closed.
John Garland believes every company should consider disaster recovery services. These services are critical for keeping businesses running after system failures. Data Centers offering disaster recovery services provide the redundancy