It’s a known fact that businesses do not want to imagine what might happen under the absolute worst conditions, but it is something that comes with the territory of being a business owner. If you don’t plan for the worst, it could potentially place your company at risk. How can you prepare yourself for the struggles that come with disaster recovery?
Here, in part four of our series exploring the value that a managed service provider can offer a business, let’s explore these data services and how businesses can benefit from utilizing them. To do so, we’ll discuss the solutions that a managed service provider can implement that assists in managing your business data – or, as we said above, storing it, protecting it, or putting it to use. Storing It with Cloud Services Modern businesses acquire and generate a truly massive amount of data in their day-to-day operations – and this data is invaluable to any businesses with goals to improve and grow. However, this data does need to be stored somewhere. While it may be able to be stored onsite for a time, there are a few shortcomings to this approach. Space isn’t used efficiently in the office The solution relies on massive amounts of heat-generating power in order to operate Limited room for error during setup Patchy warranties on equipment Very high costs for equipment and setup Limited room for expansion Requires oversight and maintenance from a skilled professional Keep in mind, we didn’t even mention redundancy. As useful as all this onsite storage could prove to be if implemented correctly, most small businesses lack the internal experience to do so – never mind setting up and managing a cloud storage server. However, a managed service provider can eliminate all of the difficulties that a small business would encounter, thanks to their status as industry professionals and their connections to various resources – such as cloud storage providers. Backing Up Data and Recovering It in the Event of a Disaster Let’s return to the business that developed their own storage solution in-house. It isn’t very likely that their business’ data is backed up… at least, not in keeping with best practices. A business like this might keep a spare hard drive tucked away in a broom closet, periodically updating it when someone remembers to do so. So, what happens to this kind of business if their landlord never warned them about some issues in their building’s plumbing, and a flood wipes out every piece of equipment they have… including the server and the improvised backup? Any managed service provider worth their salt will know that keeping an extra data copy onsite is like locking the spare key in the safe that it opens… if something bad happens, that extra copy is as good as gone. That’s why a decent managed service provider knows that the further away a data backup is from the disaster that wipes out the onsite data, the safer that data backup will be. In fact, a managed service provider will actively work to keep copies of your data in data centers in multiple areas, just to ensure there is always a safe copy somewhere. Furthermore, a managed service provider can help you strategize a disaster recovery plan, enabling you to use your data backup to at least continue some of your operations until the impact of a disaster has passed. Data Warehousing for Greater Insights In addition to all of the operational advantages that a managed service agreement brings, working with a managed service provider allows a business access to data warehousing capabilities. In simple terms, this is effectively the process of combining what […]
What Is Considered a Business Disaster? There is quite a diverse mix of events that can easily be called disasters when they strike a business, particularly one that is reliant on its technology. These events can be categorized into three different classifications of disaster: natural, technological, and manufactured (or those directly caused by human behavior). Let’s discuss these classifications in a little more detail: Natural Disasters – Any business needs to be concerned about some kind of extreme weather event or other environmental conditions, as there is effectively nowhere on the planet that doesn’t experience at least some. Without any kind of mitigation, floods, earthquakes, and storms of all kinds can severely impact business-as-usual. Technological Disasters – Unfortunately, things break on occasion, even if they’ve been impeccably maintained. What’s more, many of the technological issues that are apt to strike a business come from outside of the business’ control. What happens if a tree takes down the line that supplies your business with its power? Probably very little work, and unless you have some alternative source of power, you’ll almost certainly lose any work that wasn’t saved before power was lost. What if your vendors mess up, and fail to deliver a crucial infrastructure piece? You’ll likely be stuck, your operations suspended. Human-Manufactured Disasters – As it happens, one of your most crucial business resources is also the one that has the potential to be the most problematic: your employees. Your current workforce could potentially create some disaster scenarios, as could a former employee. This is all in addition to the adverse effects of a workplace accident. Even more personal events can impact your business – what if a key member of your staff fell ill or otherwise couldn’t be in the office for some time? What Disasters Should You Be Worried About? While any of these disasters could have a serious impact on a business, leading to ramifications to its processes and overall success, some are more likely to strike your business than others. As a result, your first efforts should be to determine which events are most likely to actually impact you. With your business’ priorities mapped out more logically, you will be able to more effectively spend your time and energy making plans to avert business disasters. What Your Disaster Preparedness Plans Need to Accomplish Any plan you create needs to focus on three basic goals – otherwise, it simply won’t be effective if (or when, if we’re being realistic) some kind of disaster strikes. These goals are as follows: Keeping your employees and infrastructure safe Keeping your data and proprietary information from being lost Keeping your operational downtime to a minimum, if not maintaining business continuity These goals should shape your planning process. This process should be carried out proactively to further minimize the impact that an issue could have. In other words, your backup plans need to outline exactly how your backed-up data is maintained and managed, how to ensure that your backups aren’t affected by the disaster at hand, and how you will be able to replace your key resources post-disaster. Ensuring Your Entire Business is Prepared Once your backup practices and policies are firmly established, you need to be sure that your entire team is brought up to speed and prepared for a […]
When you mention the term ‘disaster recovery,’ most people think about the big ground-shattering events like earthquakes, fires, floods, tropical storms, etc. While these natural events are certainly disasters and devastating in their own right, smaller things can constitute as a disaster for your business, and they aren’t seasonal.