DR, Business Continuity and your time

Disaster Recovery

Time is money. To save money it’s in your best interest not to waste time. This is especially prudent when it comes to preparing for disasters which is an area where many organisations fall short. A study was commissioned by the DR council which investigated and deduced that 75% of global organisations are at risk for not adequately preparing for a disaster situation. It was also noted that the costs of incidents mitigated with disaster were a large financial burden which were not accounted for.

Around one third of companies lost VM’s, critical files, or important applications for hours at a time and almost 20% had lost important applications for periods of days. Incredibly 25% of companies surveyed said their DC had gone down for days. Financial losses range from the thousands to the millions. All of this shows us how important it is when it comes to DR and BC and how many service providers can demonstrate value to their customers. It should also be noted that service providers should also be able to show the value of the financial savings as well as time from these services which can be explained through an RTO and RPO.

An RPO accesses how much data would be lost due to an outage before the operations of the business are interrupted. An RTO looks at the amount of time systems, applications or networks are down before negatively impacting operations. Both of these differ by company and depend of the nature of the data and the processes of the business. An RPO or RTO for an e-commerce DB could be quite different to an email server for example. To determine what these should be service providers would work with their clients and tailor their needs system by system. This way customer specific metrics for use in service level agreements and design could be factored into the price.

Solution providers should use the RTO and RPO metrics to manage expectations with customers and to build a positive relationship. It’s crucial to agree details in writing so they can see how file access can be restored for example. Also show them the value of time. Having clear expectations will reinforce the value of the service provider. It will also show how the MSP can make informed decisions around DR and BC so they don’t waste money or time.

Today’s cloud-based BC/DR solutions are a good way for MSPs to meet the RTO and RPO objectives of their clients. Through the cloud, they can better support hybrid IT environments, simplify recovery processes, and also gain more flexibility in how and what they recover for their clients. In many cases, cloud-based backup can also reduce the time it takes a business to get back up and running after disaster strikes. Time is a key indicator of how well a company will recover in the face of a disaster. When solution providers understand the value of time and know how to measure RTO and RPO, utilise cloud-based BC/DR solutions to meet the requirements of their clients, they will be on their way to ensuring that no business will fail due to the loss of data.

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