Business continuity, disaster recovery planning and database backup should all be at the top of any business administration to-do list. For example, a network disaster recovery plan is what any company should outline in case their network suddenly crashes. A small step like finding a disaster recovery plan template and implementing it according to the details of your business can actually save your company’s vital data in case a server disaster occurs. Even if your company is not active in an IT or similar technology niche, that doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t be up to date with all the software solutions that can help you write your disaster recovery plans. This guide will provide you with all the information you need about disaster recovery planning and how to create your checklist.
We’ll go through the definition of disaster recovery planning, free examples of these document types, as well as the steps you need to go through to ensure business continuity from an IT point of view. You’ll find out why disaster recovery planning is so significant for ITIL management and how technology like VMware can save your company. Without further ado, here is the simple way to learn about disaster recovery planning.
Identify Strengths and Weaknesses
A key part of disaster recovery planning is targeting the strengths and weaknesses of your company from an IT point of view. Is your computer’s antivirus software up to date? How do you store and share your PDF, Word doc and spreadsheet files? Do you use a local center server for data storage? There are plenty of questions that you need to ask and honestly answer. Don’t be afraid to admit the weaknesses of your company; it’s almost impossible for a business to be 100% secure prior to disaster recovery planning. The important part is that you are aware of your IT weaknesses and what you need to do about them.
As an example, if you find that the main server you use tends to be faulty, you should consider an alternative method of storage for your company files. Nowadays, some of the most popular solutions are cloud based; by using this kind of technology, you won’t depend on a server for your information. The files of your company will be accessible online to those who are authorized to work with them. You can also invest in advanced security measures or consult a specialist for additional solutions.
Disaster Recovery Planning Prevention Methods
As always, it is better to prevent a problem than to deal with all of the consequences at the end. When it comes to disaster recovery planning, the situation is no different. Even though the methods of disaster prevention for a business are numerous, there are three main steps that need to be taken.
To solve an issue, it is best if you get to the cause. A risk assessment will help you identify the weakest points of your company and see what the vulnerabilities are. Your information systems might not be well-protected, or the software you use might not be safe. Performing a risk assessment is a reliable way to see what you have to do afterwards.
Once you identify the causes and the precautions you need to take, proceed with implementation. It might be difficult for your company to take all the necessary measures at once (due to costs), but it is highly suggested that you work on these aspects in time.
Even when you have your disaster recovery planning all set up, you should always carry out regular checkups. Businesses grow and change all the time, and so should disaster recovery planning strategies.
Sample Disaster Recovery Plan Checklist
Disaster recovery planning strongly depends on individual company details. You can search for templates all you want, but one rule will not apply to all. What you can do, however, is go through a series of topics that your disaster recovery plan should include. You should undergo disaster recovery planning with a team, which can include IT specialists in your company or other independent professionals.
- Roles: establish the roles for your employees throughout a disaster.
- Responsibilities: set the responsibilities for each employee in a case like this.
- Task List: outline the priorities and a task schedule for emergency situations.
- Backup: immediately check if your backup is working.
- Relocation: establish a place that can serve your staff for relocation if it will be required.
- Update Schedule: make sure to always update the schedule and disaster recovery planning checklist and apply any changes.
Stay safe and protect your employees and data with a proper disaster recovery planning strategy.
- Ready.gov Disaster Recovery Planning Sample: https://www.ready.gov/business/implementation/IT
- National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST): www.nist.gov
- Microsoft SQL Disaster Recovery: https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/822400
- RTO vs. RPO for Disaster Recovery Planning: http://www.techadvisory.org/2014/07/the-difference-between-rto-and-rpo