Certain situations can have a huge impact on your business and its future. Everything from a fire destroying your office to a cyber attack exposing sensitive data could bring your operations to a sudden stop.
And this can lead to massive costs and serious reputational damage down the line.
For example, ransomware is an ever-present threat to Canadian companies: this form of cyber attack locks users out of their systems or specific files (via encryption) until a ransom is paid. But there’s no guarantee that handing over the requested amount of money will inspire the culprits to honor their part of the deal.
The cost of downtime caused by ransomware attacks is $180,000 in Canada (on average), and this cutting-edge extortion practice is (sadly) unlikely to go away anytime soon.
A ransomware attack is just one example of a disaster that could befall any business of any size, which is why a disaster recovery plan is SO important to mitigate risks. But while more than 50% of Canadian companies assigned higher priority to business continuity and disaster recovery since the pandemic crisis developed, too many still have no structure in place for a potential emergency.
So, what is a disaster recovery plan and why does it matter for your business?
What is a disaster recovery plan?
A disaster recovery plan is a strategy created to help companies keep operating as they need to in the face of an undesirable (to put it mildly) situation.
It’s not a bullet-pointed list of ideas printed on a single side of A4 paper. It’s a comprehensive, well-conceived document that establishes the actions a team will take to avoid major costs and devastating fallout.
Plans usually apply to those departments within a business that depend on the IT infrastructure, which may account for a significant portion of countless companies today. The aim is to maintain the most essential processes required to continue delivering products and services, even if at a temporarily reduced capacity.
That’s vital, as large-scale disruptions could cause harmful delays, damage customer relationships, and reduce revenue generated.
Creating a disaster recovery plan typically involves conducting a thorough assessment of processes and continuity requirements. You need to understand what the most important operations within your business are, which would be most vulnerable in the event of a disaster, and how a disaster would affect your entire infrastructure.
Conducting a BIA (Business Impact Analysis) and RA (Risk Analysis) can help you define the goals required to ensure recovery. Yes, this may take hours — but it could save invaluable time and money in the event of a real disaster in the future.
What benefits does a disaster recovery plan offer?
Keep working securely with data backup and recovery services
With a disaster recovery plan and a clear understanding of the potential dangers facing your business, you can start putting an effective system in place for backing up data.
You don’t have to rely on local data storage anymore: the cloud offers a safe, efficient solution for companies who want to keep files secure. Using on-premise storage instead means any damage to your hardware could cause you to lose those files and have no way to recover them.
But with a proper backup process, you can enjoy total peace of mind: you’ll be able to access files from any computer, in any location, even if your office is destroyed or your on-site systems are rendered unusable by a cyber attack.
You and your employees will have the flexibility to keep working — minimizing the likelihood of downtime.
Prepare your team for emergencies
One of the most important benefits of a disaster recovery plan is that your workforce will be better prepared to handle a crisis if/when it occurs. It’s easy for employees to panic if they find they’re unable to access their system or a security incident stops them performing their core duties.
But creating a plan makes it easier for you to educate employees on what they should and shouldn’t do in an emergency. Everyone should know what part they have to play in trying to maintain your business operations.
Minimize the cost of downtime
As we’ve already established, downtime can be extremely costly for businesses. A disaster recovery plan helps you recognize the potential dangers that could befall your company and affect operations, from local power outages to a flood to a theft.
When you know what to expect, you can put safety measures in place to help you handle disasters better and ensure your business continues to operate or recovers as quickly as possible. This can lead to lower costs overall, especially as downtime will be shorter and less impactful.
Keep customers satisfied, trusting, and loyal
Your customers want to believe they’re in good hands when they choose to do business with your company. If you give them any reason to think otherwise, they might walk away and try one of your competitors instead.
That may sound harsh, but more than one-third of customers admit that they would stop engaging with a company after a data breach, and around half would refuse to use an app or online service that had recently been affected by a breach.
If you have a disaster recovery plan in place and can maintain operations (even on a small scale) immediately after a crisis, customers may be more willing to stick with you.
How to implement a reliable backup process for your business
Once you have your disaster recovery plan organized, take the next step: secure your business’s data with backup process engineering services.
The GenX Careforce IT service team specializes in helping companies in diverse sectors prepare for possible disasters with secure, reliable data storage. We’ll design an informed plan to improve your present infrastructure and keep your data accessible whenever you need it.
If you want to find out how our backup process engineering services can benefit your company, contact our team today!