Does Your Business Need a Backup Plan?
Many small and large businesses alike avoid the topic of backup plans because disaster recovery is too expensive and too complex. However, the development and implementation of a well-designed backup plan is essential. Having a backup plan is vital to ensuring the continuity of your company's data and information technology assets in the event of a natural or man-made disaster. Furthermore, the time to draft a thorough backup plan is before something happens, when you can create procedures for the safe storage of data and assets that enable your company to continue accessing them after a disaster occurs.
According to Symantec SMB, 50% of small and medium sized companies have no backup and disaster recovery plan in place. 41% of those surveyed confessed that they had never even given much thought to implementing a disaster recovery or business continuity plan. If you are one of them, then you really need to think about whether you can afford not to have a backup plan.
Answering these questions will help you decide.
1. How often is employee productivity and customer accessibility or service stalled each day from a downed network?
2. How much downtime can your business truly afford and what kind of backup plan or recovery solutions are in effect when systems are unavailable?
3. What level of IT support can be accessed if there is a disaster? Can it be accessed quickly enough to minimize damage? Are you confident that your business can be back online quickly and be able to access lost data with minimal disruption?
4. Is your most critical data frequently backed up? Is the data on the personal laptops, iPads or Blackberrys of employees backed up?
5. Are all backups stored in a location off-site and quickly accessible in the event of theft, fire or flooding?
6. Are you using any custom installed software and is the supplier still in business should this software need to be re-installed or updated? Are account details, licensing agreements, and security settings somewhere on record, and is it duplicated off-site?
7. Are your systems truly protected from theft, hackers, and viruses? Are passwords to sensitive data changed whenever employees leave the company or business unit?
8. When was the last time you tested backup processes to ensure they are working properly? How quick were your backups?
Answering these questions will help you understand if you are in need of establishing a formalized backup plan for your business. To survive long term, businesses must protect capital and manage risk. Partnering with a managed service provider that offers backup/disaster recovery and business continuance solutions as a service could be a good solution to help your company both avoid a large capital expenditure and effectively manage your risk.
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